Are you using a lot of software tools for your business?
You’ll need a SAM tool to manage them.
Otherwise, you end up having duplicate apps, paying for unused software, and potentially getting fined for going over your software license limits.
Want to learn more about SAM tools, and the processes they help with?
In this guide, you’ll learn all you need to know about software asset management including:
- What’s Software Asset Management?
- 5+ Software Asset Management (SAM) Processes
- Use Blissfully to Manage Your SAM Processes
Let’s dive in!
Software asset management (SAM) is a set of processes that help you manage, control, and protect all of your company’s software assets.
With a proper SAM system in place, you better understand your costs, software usage, potential liabilities, and safety risks.
Software asset management also helps you to maintain your software assets throughout their entire lifecycle and maximize their value all from one place.
Software asset management can help you succeed in 3 main areas:
License management is an important aspect of software asset management and is one of its main goals.
When you purchase a license for a software, you need to make sure you’re compliant with its Terms & Conditions, renewal agreement, and other policies. The license also contains important details about the installation, usage, and expiration date of the software license.
So having this information in an easy-to-access place can save your employees lots of time and effort.
A SAM tool also automatically updates any changes that occur in the license policy, so your chances of becoming non-compliant are much smaller.
A software audit is the process of a third-party vendor checking whether you’re compliant with the software license you purchased.
Failing to be compliant can lead to legal issues, company liability, and hefty fines that can reach up to $150,000 per software copy that’s not properly licensed.
And on top of that, extracting all information you need for the audit manually can take you up to a month and 1 or 2 of your full-time employees. So, you’re not only more likely to make a mistake or miss an important detail, but also you lose more time and money.
With a SAM tool, you’re always prepared for an audit. That’s because all your compliance information is automatically tracked and up-to-date. So, getting it ready for an audit takes much less effort and time.
Many businesses end up buying too many licenses that are not being used. Apart from paying the recurring fee for such licenses, they also have to pay a maintenance fee which is an additional cost.
Oftentimes, this expenditure is just as bad as paying a non-compliance fine. Heck, sometimes it can even be worse.
If you’re paying a non-compliance fine, it’s just a one-time fee. Unused license fees, on the other hand, can drag for a long time and build up to enormous amounts.
And the worst part is that detecting excessive licenses is hard if you don’t have a SAM system in place. So, you might not even be aware that part of your IT budget goes for services you’ll never use!
With a software asset management tool, you see all licenses and the percentage of the ones that are staying idle in your inventory. Such insights can help you cut on these costs and optimize license usage.
Still not sure if you need a SAM tool? These 10 essential SAM benefits will convince you!
An advanced SAM tool can automatically detect a new software that’s added to the company’s inventory.
Once detected, the software becomes part of the SAM system and you see all information related to it.
SAM tools can also manage all sorts of software, including PC software, mobile apps and cloud services. You can also track the total number of apps used, the type of license you purchased, and other vendor information.
Also, you can get notified on any license changes so you’ll always be up-to-date with your license information and be able to manage it all from one place.
With a powerful SAM tool, you can prepare for a software audit in no time.
The system keeps a record of all your software tools, their licenses, and your compliance with them.
And the best part is that you can get all this information in the form of an organized report that you can present in front of your software vendors. This gives you more credibility and the chances of making a mistake or missing critical information are minimized.
When handling multiple software tools, you might get confused by their billing methods, payment deadlines, and maintenance fees, as all of them have different pricing models and payment policies.
That’s when keeping track of all these costs can get out of control.
But with the help of a SAM tool, you see all this information in one place. That includes purchases, recurring fees, and maintenance billing.
You also get useful insights into your spending so you can easily detect and prevent spending money on software you’re not using.
Another feature is the powerful report system that can break down the usage of an app per employee, department, project, and by month or a year.
You can also customize these reports to show you specific KPIs that will help you understand whether you’re reaching your SAM goals.
When an employee leaves the company, their account might be unused but still paid for. Without a SAM system, it might be hard to discover all of these accounts and keep track of them.
With a SAM tool, instead of purchasing new licenses for the employees that come after, you can recycle the old ones and give them to the new hires.
This way, you won’t be purchasing new licenses when you can easily allocate the extra ones in your inventory.
Without a centralized SAM system, some employees might purchase software without a manager’s approval. This way, the IT department has no idea what new software is added to the company’s inventory and who uses it.
But with the help of a SAM tool, you can streamline the software requests. All departments can use the SAM platform to submit their requests and get approval.
This way, all software tools are recorded in the system and managers have an overall picture of who is using what software.
This can also eliminate the usage of software with duplicate features and reduce your costs.
When onboarding employees, you need to give them access to around a dozen software tools.
SAM tools make this process as simple as 1-2-3. You can create a workflow for onboarding employees in specific departments, and the software will help you execute it each time.
Accordingly, you can also use a SAM tool for your offboarding process.
In order to minimize risk of cyber attacks, you want to make sure that you revoke software and network access from all former company employees.
You can use a SAM tool to streamline this process, and ensure that it gets executed completely every time.
Not sure if you’re doing SAM right? Follow these 7+ software asset management best practices!
Still not sure which SAM tool can make all of these processes happen?
Blissfully is a software asset management platform that helps you build efficient processes and track them all from one place.
With Blissfully you can track and manage your licenses, optimize their usage, minimize your costs, and always be ready for an audit.
Some of the key features you’ll get access to include:
- Usage and spend tracking. Identify and eliminate extra spending, inactive accounts, and unused licenses with ease.
- Budget forecasts. Create budget forecasts and compare them to your actual spending. You can customize these reports to view spending by departments or apps.
- Employee workflows. Trigger onboarding and offboarding processes and automatically assign software to new employees or disable former employee accounts.
- Vendor workflows. You can trigger vendor renewals, approvals, or termination through the platform and see all vendor information in one place.
- Audit trails. Every workflow has audit trails that show your compliance. This way, you can get a compliance report with just a few clicks.
A software asset management tool can help you manage all your software apps with ease.
To get the most out of the tool make sure you set up the following processes:
- License tracking
- Software license compliance
- Usage and spend tracking
- Software recycling
- Software request control
- Onboarding and offboarding automation