Many enterprises and businesses manage their own software assets with the help of one or even more than one Software Asset Management (SAM) tool (s). Although assistance from a tool can be of value, there are three consistent mistakes we often see when taking tool-centric approach.
MISTAKE 1 – TOOL SPRAWL
It’s typical for each software load to come with its own tool, such as Microsoft having SCCM, IBM having ILMT, and Oracle having a few proprietary tools as well. It feels pretty safe to rely on each software publisher’s tool to assess their own software, but this often leaves huge blind spots. Not only does this method fail in getting an overall view of the software estate, some of the publisher-made tools don’t even cover all of their OWN software loads.
MISTAKE 2 – TRUST IN ONE TOOL
Wouldn’t it be great to find one SAM tool to rule them all? It’s common to see IT Directors do a great deal of evaluation and analysis to choose the right tool. But the truth is, a tool alone cannot capture 100% of the data accurately. Even when you have a tool that covers “all” loads, only one part of software asset management challenges are addressed, which is capturing asset inventory.
MISTAKE 3 – IGNORING PEOPLE AND PROCESSES
No matter what tool you invest in, unless you wrap it with people and process, you will not get the maximum investment return from what you are trying to accomplish, which is control, compliance, and cost.
If you had a suite of surgical tools – scalpel, forceps, clamps, sponges – would you be equipped to perform surgery? Decidedly not. A successful medical procedure requires the people and processes around not only diagnosing the illness, but also executing the proper procedure.
When assessing your software estate using a tool, the results can be confusing or inaccurate — a failing point for many business and enterprises. The most common reaction to such findings is to simply stop and put the project aside.
And just like a surgical procedure often requires specialists from different departments, so does the process around SAM. Complex IT environments often require a team of specialists to interpret the data produced by a SAM tool, and then implement the process by which an ongoing state of control, compliance, and cost reduction.