Issued by: icomm

[Johannesburg, 31 July 2015]

The changing IT landscape, with its shift towards the cloud and greater mobility, as well as more complicated methods of accessing software (such as Software as a Service), has meant that Software Asset Management (SAM) has had to undergo a transformation in order to keep up with evolving company needs.

"In the past, SAM was a much simpler exercise; a business identified its network assets and attributed software accordingly," Hailey Parker, sales manager of COMPAREX South Africa, a global IT specialist in licence management, software procurement and technical product consulting, explains. "The ubiquitous nature of today's technology landscape, however, makes for a more complex scenario, but also highlights the importance of SAM when it comes to taking control of software assets, and thus being able to make informed decisions around both business strategies and IT operations."

The ITIL best practice guide on SAM defines it as "all of the infrastructure and processes necessary for the effective management, control and protection of the software assets within an organisation, throughout all stages of their lifecycle."

"But SAM is not just a licensing audit or a one-time exercise that falls purely within the domain of the IT department," Parker states. "It has become a key element of governance and, based on this, a key business consideration."

The global virtualisation market (categorised as hardware, storage, network and data virtualisation) was valued at more than US$10 billion in 2014 and is expected to reach US$21.5 billion by 2019 in response to demand for cloud-based systems. The deployment of virtualisation technologies has had a massive impact on how software is provisioned, licensed and supported within a virtual environment, placing an even greater emphasis on the need for SAM.

"Factors such as legislation, including the Public Finance Management Act (PFMA) and the Municipal Finance Management Act (MFMA), corporate governance requirements outlined by the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX) and the King III report, risk management, and cost savings have all become drivers in the SAM movement," says Parker. "And these new business requirements are all achievable with SAM, allowing companies to create trustworthy data, manage licensing requirements, improve management controls and operational integration, bring about a clear understanding of a business' infrastructure and environment, and enable the new workforce.

"COMPAREX' SAM2GO offering combines the best of SAM with managed services, helping companies that don't have a precise overview of their licensing situation to quickly and easily get an overview of software licences and infrastructure.

"SAM resources are scarce, so an offering like SAM2GO, which is part of COMPAREX SoftCare, a professional licence management solution, is a great alternative to traditional SAM, allowing users to reduce compliance risks, cut licence management and purchasing costs, and demonstrably increase procurement process efficiencies," she concludes.

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