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Software overspend: Some clues to stop it

software overspend

The importance to know: How to detect software overspend

Information is power. Not only the external to the organization. To know what the company is, where will go and what’s have is paramount. For what? To better assign their resources. Consequently, it’s important to have policies and processes in place to achieve it. One of those processes, what helps to detect software overspend is the Software Asset Management (SAM).

But what’s SAM? We will get this definition from GartnerA process for making software acquisition and disposal decisions. It includes strategies that identify and eliminate unused or infrequently used software, consolidating software licenses or moving toward new licensing models. Note that this description marks all the phases in the software lifecycle: acquisition, usage and deletion/disposal of the software.

So, why an organization needs a SAM? These are some reasons to have it in place:

  • Overspending.
  • Security threats.
  • BYOD / Shadow IT.
  • Compliance / Legal and financial responsibilities.
  • True-ups.
  • Fines.

Consequently, we will focus in the first issue, the overspending.

Make questions to figure out where is the (over)spend

First of all, we must draw up the macro inquests. We can use the three W’s: Where, Who and What.

  • Where is the licenses’ localization?
  • Who is the owner of the licenses?
  • What is the current cost of licenses?

With that information, we can finally make the SAM flow process as follows, to get an optimized position:

  • Findings: Related with software, hardware, virtualization applications and their utilization.
  • Rights: This is about contracts, licenses, maintenance, replacements, renewals and expiration.
  • Adjustments: Downgrades, upgrades, allocations and transfers.

Putting it all together

Finally, it’s time to make use of all this information gathered and consolidated. Below are some topics that will help to reduce your software overspend:

  • Put all on the table: Track the spend by supplier, use a comprehensive SAM application, get complete usage data along with the current compliance position.
  • Cut the excess: Identify what licenses to keep, what to resell and do not purchases new ones.
  • Reuse: Uninstall the unused software, have a software catalog in place – along with a software portal – and also an usage policy.
  • Get ready for renewals: Know everything about the software, negotiate volume discounts, review and negotiate better terms and conditions and create user profiles.
  • Control: Have an audit response team.


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