What is SAM – and why do most consider it a Bad Word?
Written by Peter Barontseff; National Account Director, SAM Division, COMPAREX Canada
Software Asset Management is commonly insinuated as Vendor Auditing of Software. It is seen as a very negative and costly experience.
For most, SAM is referred to as that dreaded vendor letter. “You have been selected to participate in a Software License Review.” Everyone cringes when they see that letter or hears about it.
The nightmares of long days and late nights in war rooms, counting software deployments, crunching spreadsheets, and putting other critical projects on hold to bow to the vendor creeps into your mind. And in most cases, due to a simple mis-understanding of the licensing model, SQL Enterprise was deployed rather than Standard and you cut a cheque for a very substantial unbudgeted amount for non-compliance. That cost, does not even take into account the internal cost of the time spent to go through the entire process, which can take months and in some large enterprises – years.
So, now that you are squirming and thinking “I don’t like SAM, I don’t want to ever go through that” – the truth is, SAM is not just managing licensing and passing a Vendor audit once in a while.
It really isn’t. Software Asset Management isn’t a bad word! SAM is a practice and methodology that allows you to take control of your assets, make them work for you, reducing your costs and protecting you from risk.
SAM is not a one time, or once a year project. SAM is an ongoing practice that must be adapted and changed as your business evolves.
Software Asset Management is about bringing people, processes, technology, knowledge and policy together to gain control and optimize your software assets throughout their lifecycle.
SAM provides management teams with the data they need to make important decisions related to controlling costs, budget accuracy, productivity, contract negotiations, reducing security risk, compliance, and ensuring that the business is modernized to compete in the market. Not just getting through a vendor audit.
The 5 Components of SAM:
- People: SAM requires involvement from across the organization. It is not a job that lies strictly in IT. Procurement, Finance, Executive Sponsorship, and IT need to be engaged in SAM as an ongoing process and policy.
- Processes: Understanding your internal processes related to software procurement and management is a critical component. Processes need to be continuously updated and optimized as the business grows and changes.
- Technology: Technology, of course, plays a role in SAM. How you collect inventory and all the related details to each asset is a key element in a successful SAM practice.
- Knowledge: The licensing world gets more complicated every day. No two vendor licensing models are the same. Having the knowledge to cover all the different software titles within your organization can be daunting, and realistically impossible.
- Policy: Developing and enacting policies related to and surrounding your SAM practice are critical to an ongoing successful SAM maturity.
It is very difficult for organizations to be able to bring all 5 components of SAM together on their own. This is why organizations partner with COMPAREX.
COMPAREX is the most knowledgeable SAM as a Service provider and partner. We help you to optimize your infrastructure to meet your business needs by using your software and assets in a far more intelligent way. The end results are ultimately reducing costs, optimizing operations, reducing risk and gaining transparency.
Let us show you why SAM is a benefit, not a curse.
Stay tuned for Part 2 in our Software Asset Management Series or sign up to be notified of our newest postings.