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Defrosting SAM Budgets With Managed Services

ManageSoft are a key player in the Enterprise SAM market, I spoke to them last week about their recent developments and how they are extending the reach of ECM into the SME market via hosted SAM.

Of all the IT Projects to be frozen during a downturn, you would have thought a software asset management project (with a solid proof of concept and compelling business case put forward) would have been more important than ever. However many SAM related projects appear to facing a freeze when reaching board level.

Computing Magazine reported last week ‘Increasing Board Input for IT Purchases’ as one of the most popular methods for organizations to reduce IT costs in the coming months. So spending thresholds are lower, sign-offs go higher, and a board member who is not SAM-savvy and perhaps does not appreciate the amount of money spent of software licensing soon puts a kybosh on the whole project.

It is my guess that most SAM projects are positioned as capital expenditure, investing in the future, which is bottom of the priorities list for many companies at the moment. One alternative is to look at ongoing hosted software asset management services, which can sometimes be financed from operational budgets.

Whilst not ideal for all companies, hosted offerings are a relatively low risk route to kick start a SAM initiative and start developing some financial returns. Low risk because organisations investing in such a service do not have to worry about onsite installation, additional infrastructure costs, or ongoing maintenance and administration.

ManageSoft are delivering their hosted SAM solution via business partners. PC-Ware across Europe and ZettaServe in Australia are leading the way in providing ECM in their datacentres. Customers can benefit from managed SAM services including hardware and software asset recognition, software license entitlement, and contract management.

In your experience – where has a SAM project budget been allocated? have you any tips to share on ensuring your project wins approval?

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About Martin Thompson

Martin is owner and founder of The ITAM Review, an online resource for worldwide ITAM professionals. The ITAM Review is best known for its weekly newsletter of all the latest industry updates, LISA training platform, Excellence Awards and conferences in UK, USA and Australia.

Martin is also the founder of ITAM Forum, a not-for-profit trade body for the ITAM industry created to raise the profile of the profession and bring an organisational certification to market. On a voluntary basis Martin is a contributor to ISO WG21 which develops the ITAM International Standard ISO/IEC 19770.

He is also the author of the book "Practical ITAM - The essential guide for IT Asset Managers", a book that describes how to get started and make a difference in the field of IT Asset Management. In addition, Martin developed the PITAM training course and certification.

Prior to founding the ITAM Review in 2008 Martin worked for Centennial Software (Ivanti), Silicon Graphics, CA Technologies and Computer 2000 (Tech Data).

When not working, Martin likes to Ski, Hike, Motorbike and spend time with his young family.

Connect with Martin on LinkedIn.

3 Comments

  1. Doron Gordon says:

    We at SAManage, a SaaS IT Asset Management provider are seeing strong interest in our software-as-

    a-service solution especially considering today’s economy. Customers are turning to SaaS for the compelling reasons of low cost to

    entry, quick route to value, reduced deployment risk and the “try before you buy”. With SaaS, customer can get up and running very

    quickly and gain value from a solution without provisioning servers or managing software.

    One of the less talked about benefits of

    SaaS is the “no upgrade” – customers are always on the latest release of the product, and do not have to go through upgrade cycles when

    the vendor releases a new version. When a SaaS vendor rolls out new functionality, it immediately becomes available to all customers who

    get that new benefit without making any investment.

  2. Doron Gordon says:

    We at SAManage, a SaaS IT Asset Management provider are seeing strong interest in our software-as-a-service solution especially considering today’s economy. Customers are turning to SaaS for the compelling reasons of low cost to entry, quick route to value, reduced deployment risk and the “try before you buy”. With SaaS, customer can get up and running very quickly and gain value from a solution without provisioning servers or managing software.

    One of the less talked about benefits of SaaS is the “no upgrade” – customers are always on the latest release of the product, and do not have to go through upgrade cycles when the vendor releases a new version. When a SaaS vendor rolls out new functionality, it immediately becomes available to all customers who get that new benefit without making any investment.

  3. The answer to that question will depend upon the maturity of the SAM

    program and (frequently) the size of the organization. In our experience within a typical SMB the SAM program is in actuality spread

    across a variety of roles and are encompassed in a number of budget line items but rarely designated as SAM. In the Enterprise we

    typically see it hitting both expense and capital in a combination of consulting services and labor in expense and software in capital.

    Having provided an outsourced solution for SAM for over 10 years we saw a drastic change in CIO receptivity last year when we

    converted to a fixed price solution. This has allowed us to demonstrate a direct hard dollar ROI exceeding the cost of our service

    typically within the first 3 months and since the service is a 12 month contract it is a justifiable expense line item. Additionally,

    since we are not tool specific clients can choose to host their inventory tool in-house and put us on a report distribution list as

    opposed to having to host their inventory data outside their walls.

    While we’ve seen a downturn in other service offerings we

    have seen a sharp upturn in our outsourced SAM service as well as our cost reduction analysis service.

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