Have you ever wondered how much money you spend on unused or underutilized software licenses? Or how much risk the business is exposed to by not having a clear understanding of your software assets? It is time to learn about software asset management (SAM) life cycle.
In this article, we will discuss everything you need to know about the software asset management lifecycle, the benefits of implementing software asset management, and how to do it correctly. We’ll also highlight some of the challenges that organizations face when implementing software asset management and how you can prevent them.
So whether you’re just starting to learn about software asset management or you’re looking for ways to improve your organization’s software usage program, this article is for you.
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With Cubes you can easily manage your software licenses, track usage, expiration dates, and compliance with ease. Cubes also provide alerts and notifications to keep you up-to-date on your licenses.
Here are just a few of the benefits of choosing Cubes:
- Affordable: Cubes is a cost-effective solution that won’t break the bank.
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- Easy to use: Cubes is easy to use and can be set up in minutes.
- Scalable: Cubes is scalable and can grow with your organization.
- Secure: Cubes is protected by a secure framework to ensure your data is protected at all times.
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What is Software Asset Management (SAM)?
SAM is the process of strategically overseeing and optimizing software assets from the moment of their acquisition to their eventual retirement. It involves comprehensive planning, utilization monitoring, and efficient license management. By maintaining an intelligent repository of software file information, SAM empowers organizations to deploy software, track inventory, and effectively manage licenses, all while mitigating legal risks and unnecessary costs.
It also includes managing software licenses, hardware asset management, software usage, software vendors, and asset management lifecycle stages.
Why is Software Asset Management Critical?
SAM facilitates effective management of software, deployments, and updates, improving operational efficiency across the board. It will empower your business to stay in control of its software resources and make informed decisions about new software acquisitions.
Some of the most important reasons why software asset management is critical for organizations include:
- Risk mitigation: Good asset management strategy helps to mitigate the risk of security breaches and data loss. With good service management, your organization can reduce its risk of exposure to malware and other threats by tracking software assets and ensuring that they are properly patched and updated.
- Compliance: Software license agreement often have strict requirements that must be met in order to remain compliant. However, a good SAM system helps track software assets and ensure that they are in compliance with licensing agreements.
- Cost savings: SAM can help organizations save money by identifying and eliminating unused or underutilized software licenses. It can also help organizations to negotiate better software licensing terms with software vendors.
- Improved efficiency: SAM can help organizations to improve the efficiency of their IT operations. By ensuring that software assets are properly utilized, organizations can reduce the amount of time and money that they spend on IT support.
The Phases of Software Asset Management Lifecycle
The Software Asset Management Lifecycle (SAM) is a framework that helps you to identify and manage the key phases of your software assets. By understanding these phases, you can improve the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of your software asset management program.
1. Identifying the Need for the Software and Planning
This phase is critical as it lays the foundation for effective SAM processes. It involves conducting internal audits and assessing the current software usage to identify the software that is needed, the number of licenses that are required, and the software’s intended use.
2. Acquiring Software Assets
Once the planning is complete, you can proceed with acquiring the necessary software licenses. This may involve negotiating with software vendors, understanding license entitlements, and ensuring compliance with licensing agreements.
You may then proceed to purchase software licenses, lease the required software, or go for open-source software. Whatever the case, It is important to ensure that the software is deployed correctly and that end users are trained on how to use it effectively.
3. Utilizing Software Assets
After the acquisition, it’s time to put the software assets to work. This phase encompasses deploying software across relevant systems, training end-users for efficient utilization, and tracking license usage to avoid any non-compliance issues.
4. Maintaining and Monitoring the Software Assets
Softwares are not static; they require constant maintenance, updates, and patches to function optimally. Therefore once you have begun using the new software licenses, it becomes necessary for you to implement regular monitoring of software performance, installing updates as soon as they are available, and managing licenses so as to avoid any disruptions to your business operations.
5. Retire or Decommission the Software Assets
This is the last stage of the software asset management lifecycle. The time will definitely come when you must retire or decommission software that is no longer useful. This, of course, is done after assessing the usefulness of the software. It may involve uninstalling the software, deleting the software files, and returning the software licenses to the vendor.
Challenges of Software Asset Management
- It may be daunting: Managing numerous software assets can be overwhelming without an efficient SAM system in place.
- Complex licensing agreements: Understanding and managing diverse license agreements can be a daunting task, leading to potential legal risks.
- Tracking installed software: You may often struggle to keep track of all the software installed across your systems, leading to potential compliance issues.
- Optimizing utilization: Underutilized software licenses can lead to unnecessary costs, impacting an organization’s budget.
- Vendor management: Dealing with various software vendors can be time-consuming and challenging, affecting negotiation outcomes.
- Compliance and audits: Ensuring compliance with license agreements and undergoing software audits can be resource-intensive and stressful.
- Cost management: The total cost of software ownership can escalate if not managed properly, affecting the organization’s budget.
However, with a great software asset management system like Cubes, everything will be done seamlessly. The automated processes and centralized management makes software asset management a breeze. You enjoy automated audits, in-app license renewals, and more. Get a demo today to get started.
Benefits of Choosing a Good Software Asset Management Solution
Once you have chosen the right software asset management solution, you go on to enjoy a range of advantages and peace of mind to know that your licenses are secured, effectively managed, and protected from compliance issues. Here is a closer look at the benefits to expect:
- Efficiency and cost savings: Optimizing software usage and managing licenses effectively lead to significant cost savings. It will also improve overall business operations.
- Improved Productivity: Proper use of software resources can improve employee productivity. By making informed decisions about software acquisitions based on usage data and needs, businesses can ensure that their employees have the tools they need to be successful.
- Risk control: Ensuring compliance and proper license management reduces legal and financial risks.
- Enhanced Security: Regular updates and patch installations strengthen system security.
- Better vendor relationships: Effective vendor management leads to favorable negotiation outcomes.
- Transparency and Planning: SAM helps organizations align their software resources with their goals. This ensures that they are using the right software for the right tasks and that they are not wasting money on unused licenses.
Software Asset Management Best Practices
- Choose the right SAM tools and solutions: There are a number of SAM tools and solutions on the market, so it’s important to choose the right ones for your needs. Consider your specific needs and requirements when making your decision.
- Implement a centralized SAM system to manage all software assets efficiently. Establish a single repository or platform that acts as the heart of your SAM system.
- Use automated tools to keep track of software requests as well as all installed software and licenses. Leverage cutting-edge software asset management tools that automate mundane tasks like license tracking, renewal reminders, and audits.
- Regularly monitor software usage to ensure compliance with license agreements. By tracking software usage, you can quickly identify areas where you might be over- or under-licensed. You can then take steps to optimize your license usage and ensure compliance.
- Provide adequate training to end-users to maximize software utilization. It is also where you regularly conduct internal audits.
Following these best practices will allow you to improve your software asset management and achieve your SAM goals.
So are you ready to start?
Signup Now on Cubes to Start Managing Your Software Licenses with Ease
Are you tired of manually tracking your software licenses? Do you want to save money and improve compliance? If so, then you need to check out Cubes, the leading software license management solution.
Cubes make it easy to manage your software licenses in one place. You can track license usage, expiration dates, and compliance with ease. Cubes also provide alerts and notifications to keep you up-to-date on your licenses.
With Cubes, you can:
- Identify underutilized licenses and optimize software usage.
- Track software licenses in real-time.
- Manage all software licenses from a centralized location.
- Receive alerts and notifications about potential underutilization and expiring licenses.
- Generate automated reports on license usage, allocation, and compliance.
Request a demo to learn more about how Cubes can help you manage your software licenses with ease.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Is software asset management the same as IT asset management?
A: No. While software asset management (SAM) focuses specifically on managing software licenses and usage, IT asset management (ITAM) covers a broader range of IT assets, including hardware and software.
Q: How will asset lifecycle management benefit my business organization?
A: A good asset management system leads to cost savings, risk mitigation, increased efficiency, improved productivity, better decision-making, enhanced security, transparent software usage, vendor relationship improvements, and strategic planning.
Q: Why is Cubes the best tool for SAM?
A: Cubes is the best tool for SAM due to its ease of use, comprehensive features covering all aspects of SAM, real-time updates on software usage and compliance, customizable reports for better decision-making, and excellent customer support.
Quality software asset management solution is a critical requirement for business organizations of all sizes. By implementing an efficient SAM program, you can avoid certain risks, improve compliance, save money, and improve efficiency.
For easy and reliable management of your software licenses, choose Cubes. With Cubes, you can fully track your software licenses, monitor usage, renew subscriptions, ensure compliance, and perform audits with only a few clicks. It is easy to use and can help you save money on your software costs.
Why not get started with a demo right now? Contact Cubes today to discuss your specific needs: +1 800 342 9388