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An ITAM bull’s-eye: detection & removal of unused software

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Arup is best know for its design work for the built environment such as 30 St. Mary Axe a.k.a 'The Gherkin' in London (for which Arup were structural engineers).

Software efficiency vendor 1E has sold its license optimisation tool to structural engineering firm Arup. The tool itself is designed to connect with Microsoft’s System Centre Configuration Manager (ConfigMgr) and run analytics from its database.

Arup has also purchased license use of 1E’s Shopping enterprise app store. Shopping is intended to enable users to select and install their own software “within minutes” (according to 1E’s claims) of the original request.

NOTE: 1E was included in our February 2012 Review: Microsoft SCCM (ConfigMgr) Plug-Ins Group Test

Unused software ELIMINATION

Aware of a forthcoming “true-up” where expenditure on applications could run to over £935,000, Arup wanted to find and eliminate unused software on its PCs and streamline software deployment to save IT helpdesk costs.  This efficient IT project with 1E has saved the firm £650,000.

After staff costs, the second biggest line item at Arup was software. On average, software spend accounts for 40 percent of the total IT spend, with 70 percent spent on desktop software such as Adobe and Microsoft products.

Led by Richard Barnes, global automation team lead at Arup, the IT team set out to see how efficient that spend was. The team agreed to reclaim all software that had not been used for more than 90 consecutive days.

“We were able to uninstall around £585,000 worth of software, that’s about 17,000 installations.  AppClarity has lessened the ‘administrative nightmare’ of detecting installed but unused software.  As well as avoiding unnecessary software costs now and in the future, we now have a much-needed, transparent view of application compliance and a simple detection process in place to find and eliminate unused software,” comments Barnes.

“Additionally, with Shopping, we have saved £735,000 on software deployment costs over two years, which equates to 148,137 software installs processed, saving more than 37,000 man hours of IT time which were better spent on core tasks.  We’ve also got a very happy team of internal customers, who find using the tool as easy as ordering from iTunes or Amazon,” adds Barnes.

AppClarity  from 1E launched in April 2011. Customers include 3M, Aptar Group, Arup, ERM and the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.

Unused software and shelfware

“Software licences represent a major cost and administrative burden for organisations – often, they consume far more of the IT budget than necessary.  There is over £1.7 billion of preventable and ongoing costs associated with unused software and shelfware within organisations in the United States and the United Kingdom – that’s £230 of unused software per PC which AppClarity can claim back,” comments Sumir Karayi, CEO, 1E.

“Empowering users to shop for applications themselves embraces the consumerisation of IT in today’s social office.  Savvy business people don’t want to wait a week or more for the software they need to do their jobs, but research has found that sometimes that is the case. They walk around with app stores in their pockets on smartphones – there is no reason not to introduce the same concept into the workplace and offer our customers significant time and cost savings,” concludes Karayi.

Shopping is fully tested against the legacy (package/programme) model of Microsoft System Centre Configuration Manager (ConfigMgr) 2012 RC2.  Since its inception, 1E has sold 2.3 million licenses of Shopping worldwide.

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Adrian Bridgwater

Adrian is Editor of The ITAM Review and ITSM Review. Adrian is also regular writer and blogger with Computer WeeklyDr. Dobb’s Journal and other IT publications. Connect with him on Twitter or LinkedIn.

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