5 Key Findings in Software Asset Management
Crayon US recently met with over 150 Software Asset Management (SAM) and Information Technology (IT) procurement professionals from America’s top companies at the only end-user driven networking SAM event in the US; SAMS US. Each attendee was asked 5 questions regarding SAM. Below are the findings:
1. Where, in your organization, is your internal SAM Department located today?
SAM Departments are most commonly located within IT, procurement, finance, and vendor management. Some companies have very dispersed SAM departments with multiple departments included and some companies have no SAM team at all.
SAM owners highly recommended IT and senior level management decision makers, who have ownership of asset management and compliance, to be part of the SAM team and to be proactive.
The key takeaway is to have buy-in from senior leadership. SAM processes need to be clearly defined. For example; software deployment; will your end users download and deploy software of their choosing, or will there be processes and approvals? A defined SAM process with leadership buy-in will create a SAM company culture, which will reduce SAM complexity and departmental resistance.
2. In which direction do you see your internal SAM department develop over a period of 5 years?
Companies are challenged with lack of budget to fund resources and find talent with the right skill set motivated to stay educated in the increasing complexity of the licensing world. Companies want to define and mature the SAM processes to incorporate a positive SAM culture, reduce defensiveness within an organization, drive positive relationships between departments, and have a company-wide understanding of SAM processes and the value of accurate data. SAM departments are looking to expand areas of expertise and define what those areas of expertise will be with help from leadership. Accuracy of data is crucial for trust and collaboration with company leadership and internal end users.
Become an “internal strategic partner” by selling successes, providing accurate data, and showing cost savings, cost avoidance, and compliance successes. Work on collaborative efforts with management and have a governance process in place to reduce complexity.
3. Which skills are needed to succeed in your SAM Department today?
A successful SAM department will be able to:
- Obtain accurate data from different departments
- Recruit and retain resources (Hard to do with limited formal training provided)
- Strive toward increased SAM maturity and defined processes
- Increase budget if possible
- Stay educated on licensing models and industry trends
- Provide ongoing training and education
- Communicate SAM value internally through reporting, forecasting, risk avoidance, cost savings, etc.
- SAM team should include some soft skills training for internal departmental relationship building
4. Which direction do you see the skills needed to succeed in your SAM Department develop over a period of five years?
The traditional on-premises SAM processes will move toward a license management and subscription management process with the overall focus of managing cloud spend. SAM departments will need to stay educated on industry trends and legal issues and continually demonstrate vision and value internally, even in an ever-increasing complex, technical, and detail-oriented role. SAM resources will have a broad experience and/or a specific expertise where possible.
5. What do you need to be successful in your department?
- Accurate information and data from multiple departments
- Communication skills, resources and processes to sell SAM value internally
- Ongoing education and training
- Leadership buy-in and engagement in the SAM process
SAMS US Takeaway
Crayon's engagement with the attendees confirmed the passion and intelligence of the SAM and IT Procurement leaders who joined us in the round table sessions. The professionals truly care about what they do and want to show great value to their companies.