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ITSM Thoughts from the World of Software Asset Management

It appears there are self-esteem issues in the IT realm. Roy Canavan in an ITSM Review article addresses the struggle that software asset management (SAM) faces as it tries to fit in among other organizational standards. Canavan complains that SAM is under-used, costing companies money on the one hand, or much-needed support on the other.

ITSM / ITAM Divide – Bridged with SAM

According to Canavan, the divide between IT systems management and IT assets management is real, despite notions to the contrary:

Best practice would have us believe that the creation of a SAM framework ties in seamlessly with the rest of IT, as well as with the rest of the business (many elements of data required to support a SAM framework lie with HR (named user licenses), the Contracts Department (concerning Software Contract metrics) and Procurement/Finance (to account for the installs made under the aforementioned contracts)).

ITAM, which is really a form of inventory management, needs more SAM to address the Proof of Entitlement concerns that go along with inventory data. This, Canavan explains, is because the actual status of software assets depends on supporting data (contract and procurement data), not just installation.

More than a Marginal Function

SAM needs to be more than just a marginal function because software consumption influences the outcomes of future purchases and contracts, which ultimately affect a business’s bottom line and/or productivity. But wouldn’t you know, the issue of SAM tends to attract attention only in the wake of Software Vendor Audits, leaving this supposed BAU activity mostly in the cold.

Inclusion with Contracts and Finance

If only SAM could make it into the contracts and finance departments, those stubborn cliques that snub their noses about IT licensing. C&F departments often forget to consider additional roll-out clauses related to software contracts. This can present a business with unneeded expenses in the long-run–as much as an additional 25% to the price of a contract for vendor-based support–necessitating the need for a better SAM suite.

Read the full article here:

About Eric Anderson

Eric Anderson is a staff writer for CAI's Accelerating IT Success. He is an intern at Computer Aid Inc., pursuing his master's degree in communications at Penn State University.

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