Calling all business owners!
What do you believe is critical to making your company a success?
A few things will likely come to mind, driven by the ultimate, undying factor that plagues all ambitious CEOs and Executives:
Getting more revenue!
And so, to do this, you’ve agonised over having the perfect sales process and the perfect marketing process, all the while ensuring you’ve cultivated vital synergy between them both – the key to a well-rounded and effective company.
But, are you missing something crucial?
Yes. And it is based on the very foundation of which you do business!
Your software asset management, otherwise known as SAM.
What is software asset management?
Microsoft rightly says that “SAM brings together people, processes, and technology to control and optimise the use of software in your organisation.”
In other words, SAM helps companies:
- Access, manage and secure their software and hardware assets
- Assess their IT operations productivity and cybersecurity
- Assess production and nonproduction data centre designs and workloads
- Assess whether any of the above can be improved
What is the point of spending severe amounts of money on that sales and marketing software, which is accessed across the entire company on multiple devices, if it’s not managed efficiently and protected from threats?
Your software and hardware are essential, and should be handled similarly to other investments your business makes!
So, short answer: if you want your business to succeed, you need to create a SAM plan.
Why is SAM important?
Organisations continue to move to a cloud-based structure, which means growing an effective IT asset management solution will become increasingly important.
Research carried out by the IDC shows evidence that the IT asset management software market will reach $2.6 billion in 2020. This represents an annual growth rate of 8.4%.
And, by 2025, every industry will be “transformed into a digital business”. Therefore, it’s not a surprise that, in 2016, 52% of CEO’s had already established a digital business strategy.
We’re seeing business and IT technology trends, such as:
- The influx of mobile devices
- Internet of Things (IoT)
- Cloud Solutions and AI
- Increased Need for Data Storage
- Increased Threat of Cyberattacks
- More Remote Employees with multiple devices
These factors add complexities and costs to your company’s IT department if they’re not controlled. And we know from the fast-moving pace of the world, that by the time we get into Q2 of 2018, there are bound to be more technology trends that your SAM solution will have to cover. Keeping your plan up to date will help with this.
The ICD have noticed that traditional approaches to asset management do not hit this moving target. Companies are unable to respond quickly to changing business needs, and cannot keep pace with the performance and security demands of today.
Is your business one of these? Or have you seen the benefits of getting your SAM solution in place?
What are the benefits of Microsoft’s SAM solution?
Financial improvements –
Controlling the cost of all your software assets is a massive challenge; especially you’ve amassed thousands of different types of software, licenses and versions. Managing and updating them when necessary can be extremely expensive.
Microsoft’s SAM solution helps in this area by securing valuable information on the licenses you’re running currently. IT departments can budget more effectively with this information, and cost of operations will likely reduce as your organisation becomes streamlined
Volume discounts –
Your SAM solution will make you aware of your licensing information: what types you have, how many you have, what your organisation has bought in the past, what you’re using currently, and what you will still need to use in future.
Bear in mind: you’ll put more clout behind a discount request if you buy your licenses in volume. Microsoft’s SAM solution promises to help with negotiating these discounts, allowing you to save money and improve business relationships with your software resellers.
Liability control –
Microsoft’s SAM solution will ensure your software licenses are compliant across the board, including compliance with government regulations (strict standards of IT governance and control).
The costs of penalties, legal fees, and damage to your business’ reputation can easily be avoided with a software asset management plan in place.
Corporate Governance –
Microsoft states: “effective corporate governance begins with…identifying the risk facing your business, and controlling and mitigating those risks before they can impact.”
Their SAM solution can help you do both. Your current software management (or lack of one) may have compliance issues. SAM will create a best-practice roadmap to ensure all your software assets are managed consistently.
Employee satisfaction –
You want your employees to do a good job, so give them the tools they need! Microsoft’s SAM will make your software and IT systems easy to use, trouble-free, and function correctly.
Having the right systems in place, which work simultaneously without fault, will increase employee efficiency and boost morale.
Operations run smoother –
Microsoft’s SAM helps your business run smoothly, giving you peace of mind and providing extra layers of security.
The whole process is designed to reduce the complexity of your software and IT resource, allowing operations to optimise and run almost autonomously so you can focus on the other stuff: making money.
Reduce waste and redundancy –
Companies may not know what software they’ve bought over the years. It may overlap with other software purchased, or even be out of date without them realising. Does this relate to you?
Microsoft’s SAM solution allows you to pick out what software assets you actually use, and help you decide what to get rid of and how to do so. Costly maintenance plans and annual fees, for example, may still be being paid on software you no longer need.
Remember: check your license agreements before making any changes. There may be clauses, which limit your options.
The next steps
Creating your software asset management plan has never been more critical. Your IT environment can become dangerously vulnerable if you do not know what software assets you have, where these are located, and how they’re configured and used.
We have produced a step-by-step guide on how you can get started with your SAM plan.