Software License Asset Management (SLAM) Part 1

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1 LANDesk White Paper Software License Asset Management (SLAM) Part 1 Five Steps to Reduce Software License Costs and Ensure Audit Preparedness

2 Contents A Software Audit Looms in Your Future Overbuying Software Licenses... 3 The Basics of Managing Software Licenses Acquire & Import Discover & Inventory Document, Control, Reconcile... 4 Support SLAM with Reporting and Data Analytics... 4 Top 10 Benefits of SLAM Conclusion: Survive Audits, Contain Costs and Drive Efficiency... 5 Progressing through Three Levels of SLAM To the maximum extent permitted under applicable law, LANDesk assumes no liability whatsoever, and disclaims any express or implied warranty, relating to the sale and/or use of LANDesk products including liability or warranties relating to fitness for a particular purpose, merchantability, or infringement of any patent, copyright or other intellectual property right, without limiting the rights under copyright. LANDesk retains the right to make changes to this document or related product specifications and descriptions, at any time, without notice. LANDesk makes no warranty for the use of this document and assumes no responsibility for any errors that can appear in the document nor does it make a commitment to update the information contained herein. For the most current product information, please visit. Copyright 2013, LANDesk Software, Inc. and its affiliates. All rights reserved. LANDesk and its logos are registered trademarks or trademarks of LANDesk Software, Inc.and its affiliates in the United States and/or other countries. Other brands and names may be claimed as the property of others. LSI-1166 AS/BB/DL 2

3 A Software Audit Looms in Your Future If you are increasingly anxious about software audits, you re not alone. Software companies have made it their business to collect on revenue losses from unlicensed software, and they act with backing from government copyright laws, which permit stiff fines well in excess of actual damages for the use of unlicensed software. 1 And the software vendors aren t the only ones looking to capitalize on patent infringements. Disgruntled insiders within your organization now have incentives to make online noncompliance claims through the Business Software Alliance (BSA), which offers up to a $1 million reward for a qualifying report of license noncompliance. 2 While penalties and increased license fees for noncompliance can cost organizations millions of dollars, they are far from the only costs your enterprise can face as a result of a software audit. An onsite audit can disrupt the work environment for many months and pull your internal resources away from key projects for the onerous task of gathering whatever information the software provider demands from software invoices to the documents that came from companies you have acquired. Language in current license agreements can lead to misinterpretation and disputes, increasing attorneys fees. And then there s the media: even if noncompliance was unintentional, the press may have a field day reporting that your organization has pirated software, damaging your reputation and brand. If you can t easily put your finger on what software you have, where you have it and how you are using it, the chances of failing a software audit increase. In addition, the complexities of today s license agreements often cause inadvertent software use violations. A few years ago, counting up your discoveries and reconciling them against your purchases was enough to satisfy an auditor, but today a single license agreement can account for many entitlements. An example is the Microsoft Developer Network license, which allows you to consume one license to run many operating systems and applications on an unlimited number of computers as long as those computers are used for development and testing purposes. This kind of licensing agreement represents many complexities for the software asset manager charged with the reconciliation of software assets. Overbuying Software Licenses One of the ways organizations protect themselves against non-compliance is to overbuy software licenses. If you don t understand what you have, you may be tempted to overbuy licenses to avoid getting hit with penalties and fees. This crisisdriven approach to preparing for an audit may avoid fines, but it does nothing to ease the time and money you ll spend to survive subsequent audits. The complexities of software management cause many organizations to wait until after a software audit costs them stiff penalties to implement some form of software management strategy. For many companies, software management means using the basic system tools that come with Microsoft Windows or other operating systems to account for software installations. But without a process for comparing installed software to allowances on a license agreement, you not only stand to fail an audit, but you have no way to recover and allocate underutilized licenses. You also have no way to align software buying with your needs or to make cost-effective agreements with your software vendor. You need a software license asset management (SLAM) program that prepares you in advance of an audit and allows you to recover considerable costs by taking control of your software assets. The Basics of Managing Software License Unlike computer hardware that you can touch and feel, software is by nature ephemeral and more difficult to track. By utilizing a process-driven software SLAM program to analyze what you own and how you re using it, you lighten your load at the time of an audit by being in command of the information your software vendor will demand. You also stand to trim your costs by recovering and reallocating underutilized licenses, buying only what you need when you need it, and making more lucrative agreements with your software vendor. SLAM is a set of management disciplines that combine internal processes and the oversight of an asset manager with automated systems to drive real value across your organization. To be of value, SLAM must entail ongoing, repeatable procedures used by all areas of the enterprise to define product versions and the terms and conditions of their use, to demonstrate actual ownership with verifiable records, and to determine who is authorized to use which titles. SLAM encompasses these five disciplines that enable you to eliminate unused licenses and drive immediate software license savings: Acquire & Import Discover & Inventory Document Reconcile Report [1] Software & Information Industry Association. Anti-Piracy FAQ, php?option=com_content&view=article&id=387:piracy-faq&catid=8:anti-piracy-overview&itemid=420 [2] Business Software Alliance. https://reporting.bsa.org/usa/home.aspx 3

4 Acquire & Import: Gain insight into all software and hardware assets from the point of purchase, automate purchase tracking, and eliminate unnecessary acquisitions. Discover & Inventory: Accurately discover, inventory, and report installed software titles on users devices. Document: Categorize and normalize each installation of software according to vendor, utilization rates, software entitlements, EULA terms, and conditions of use. Reconcile: Regularly reconcile entitled software versus discovered software and remedy exceptions immediately. Allow license managers to reclaim or uninstall applications. Report: Deliver in-depth reports and dashboards that provide actionable insight. With these core practices in place, SLAM then offers the validation you need to protect yourself at the time of an audit and to plan for the future effectively by: 1) ensuring the consistent capture of data over time, 2) providing a history of changes over time, and 3) demonstrating control at any given time of your software asset entitlements. The benefit of having SLAM in place is that it significantly changes the way your organization views and manages its software assets. With SLAM, requests for software installations go through a request-and-approval process that takes into account the role of the requester and the available entitlements to ensure proper administrative tracking and oversight. When supplemented with a standardized catalog of approved titles, SLAM practices build the structure and context for active software resource tracking, maintenance, and planning. This disciplined, process-driven approach enables cost management and chargeback. It also helps internal consumers understand the budget impacts of requesting and installing software. SLAM will do much more than take the pain out of an external audit; it will allow you to perform routine internal audits to determine if your software assignments benefit your organization, if you have the right software assigned to the right machine, and if you are working with the right vendor. Without processes that offer up hard statistics, you have no leverage for negotiating license agreements, volume discounts, or the details of the audit process. Acquire & Import Develop an integrated structured asset repository by collecting and importing key information about your software, such as entitlements, license agreements, contract terms, proof of purchase, departmental allocations, and warranties. To keep this information continually current, organize it in a structured asset 4 repository that contains a software catalog of owned and available software titles and licenses. A consistent update process will result in an up-to-date catalog that quickly answers auditor queries. By integrating the repository with other SLAM components, you can deduce chargebacks, potential upgrade paths, and the number of licenses still available for assignment. Discover & Inventory Whether you want to renegotiate a software vendor license agreement or reassign unused or underused software, you first need to discover and inventory how and where you are using your software. By combining internal processes for tracking software with an automated SLAM discovery engine, you will be able to locate your software, analyze usage, and reconcile that information against entitlements, which you have stored in the structured asset repository. A company-wide discovery discipline serves your organization far beyond the audit by providing the necessary information to drive entitlement policies, recovery processes, and purchasing. Document, Control, Reconcile Until you take control by documenting and reconciling software entering and leaving your organization, you remain exposed at the time of an audit. By centralizing the management of software installation requests and fulfillment, you gain the control mechanisms you need for tracking when authorized software leaves your environment or unauthorized software enters it. Centralized management proves that you have a discipline in place for assigning software rights specifically and consistently. Automated request handling and fulfillment engines interfaced with an asset repository not only allow you to satisfy auditors by ensuring compliant software use among employees, they enable internal audits that yield information you can use to negotiate better deals with software providers. Support SLAM with Reporting and Data Analytics Use the SLAM disciplines you put in place in your organization to generate reports that prove your software usage patterns. A company that can track usage patterns over time enters a software audit with strong defenses. By using automated reporting tools that integrate with the structured data repository and the engines for software discovery, request handling, and fulfillment, organizations can support a wide range of decision-making, from evaluating and revising internal policies to providing leverage during purchase and contract negotiations. In addition, data analytics gives you granular control and total visibility into your end-user inventory of both software and

5 hardware assets. It captures point-of-purchase information and provides the end-to-end product lifecycle visual picture of when to purchase new IT assets. An effective data analytics solution is one that enables you to: Gain control of asset acquisition from the start by establishing beginningof-life initiatives through cloud aggregators that connect your information with B2B purchasing information from multiple vendors, suppliers, and resellers. The solution should be able to deliver purchase history, barcode scanner integration, automatic asset enrollment, license renewal, asset retirement, and warranty expirations. Track asset lifecycles through agentless, real-time collection of asset data from endpoints after deployment. This tracking capability should encompass software and hardware discovery; asset mapping; and software and hardware usage monitoring, such as printer toner levels and number of pages printed. Manage end-of-life initiatives through the monitoring of warranty expiration dates and ultimate archiving of asset records to a central repository. Top 10 Benefits of SLAM 1. Turns data into decision-making information 2. Supports both enterprise and departmental agreements 3. Improves internal analysis, chargeback, and financial accountability 4. Reduces legal/financial/reputational exposure risk 5. Improves efficiency and lowers IT support and maintenance costs 6. Assists in budget planning and resource allocation 7. Streamlines mergers and acquisitions 8. Provides data for license renegotiation and purchase right-sizing 9. Ensures consistent and repeatable processes 10. Delivers full visibility into lifecycle data for any assets Conclusion: Survive Audits, Contain Costs and Drive Efficiency Progressing through Three Levels of SLAM SLAM does not become part of your organization s DNA overnight. Instead, it is a goal you can reach through a series of successive steps. Many companies start their SLAM program with a basic plan that allows them to survive a software audit. But if they stop at this initial phase of SLAM implementation, they will fail to reap the financial benefits of a comprehensive SLAM program. At Level 1, SLAM allows you to survive the audit by showing proof of purchase for every discovered instance of an audited title. This initial phase of SLAM includes a basic entitlement management program for comparing the specific terms and conditions of a license against what is actually installed. Ideally, you have assigned an employee to manage discovery and entitlements and to police noncompliance. At Level 2 in the development of a SLAM discipline, you can begin to contain your costs by analyzing how your software assets are being used and make operational decisions based on that analysis. For example, you may look at usage patterns to determine if there is unused software that you can uninstall and make available to other employees. By first identifying underused software, then initiating internal processes to solicit an explicit request to retain or remove the software, SLAM helps raise visibility into the costs and business-relevant use of that software. By actively assessing software usage, you can negotiate future license agreements with your software vendor based on validated data, not guesswork or supposition. At Level 3, you ve successfully automated software installation requests with your software catalog for dynamic, real-time assignment and recovery based on policy and license availability. You have structured processes to ensure that SLAM becomes a strategic tool rather than simply data collection in advance of a pending audit. Just as importantly, you can now manage costs of both licenses and maintenance as a function of the asset catalog and expose those costs to internal consumers through budget chargeback. Now, you can right size your next license purchase rather than overbuy licenses as a way to achieve compliance. You can keep total titles owned to a minimum, decrease support costs, and reduce the complexity of your technology infrastructure. It stands to reason that software audits will increase as vendors continue to collect on revenue losses from unlicensed software. In addition to government copyright laws that permit extreme penalties, an audit burdens your staff, disrupts productivity, and jeopardizes your organization s reputation. With so much at stake, it makes good business sense to prepare for an audit with a SLAM program. At the time of a software audit, a SLAM program helps you avoid increased license fees and penalties and keeps your employees engaged in your key initiatives rather than burdened by an auditor s requests for documentation. Adhering to a SLAM discipline beyond the audit provides the structure and analysis a company needs to forecast purchases and negotiate better license agreements from a position of strength and knowledge. 5

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