Just a few weeks ago, Stephen White and Victoria Barber, both Research Directors at Gartner, published a paper on the future of Software Asset Management. It's well written and a great insight (excuse the pun) into where things are headed and the increasing challenges faced by IT and business leaders in relation to software.
As software vendors and companies transition from traditional license models to Software as a Service (SaaS) the risk of higher outlays on software has grown significantly. At the same time though, we are all becoming familiar with the transformative impact that software can have on an organisation - driving out cost, improving customer service, increased sales or just generally improving productivity. Many CIOs preference buying over building software and more often than not, today's best of breed tools are delivered as SaaS by default.
“By 2020, for 40% of software titles, the fundamental priority of software asset management (SAM) will shift from managing compliance with software publisher terms and conditions to eliminating unnecessary expenditure in "as a service" contracts.”
- Stephen White and Victoria Barber, Gartner Analysts *
The accessibility of SaaS can drive over-provisioning of user accounts, excessive account entitlement and expensive overuse of virtual environments. In the traditional Software Asset Management context, this is new territory and there's a catch - it's all web based - so compliance and inventory tools won't find it installed anywhere.
Our take is that there's a related and even bigger shift taking place where advisors in software asset management, transformation or change management can focus on helping companies understand and track sofware value - not just what's installed or deployed. To us, this means we all need to head back to the business case and consider what drives software's ability to generate benefit for a company. Quite simply, that's why Insightcentr exists. To answer the fundamental question of any software platform - who's running it, and are they really using it?