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3.3 min to readAsset ManagementSoftware Sourcing Services

6 steps to transform your digital supply chain program

SoftwareOne blog editorial team
Blog Editorial Team
SoftwareOne Software Sourcing Services

When it comes to digital supply chain management, new ways to improve and optimize your organization’s current methods are always cropping up. Taking a hard look at your program as it is now will help you find underlying issues. You can then determine how to work out these kinks and establish a process that can be continually optimized.

1. Evaluate your current program

To begin your digital supply chain management transformation, you first have to evaluate your organization’s current program. An easy way to get a jump on this process is to run a software asset management (SAM) maturity assessment. A SAM maturity assessment will help identify at which stage your SAM program is (reactive vs proactive) and where your organization needs to go next for effective transformation. This will require you to take a closer look at current policies, your workers’ digital supply chain skills, and your SAM tool.

Doing a complete tool evaluation is also a crucial component of your digital supply chain management journey. Examine your existing SAM tool and how it is functioning, and determine the business requirements – such as contracts – that come with it. If it is no longer feasible to use your current tool, consider what requirements would be involved in getting a new one. 

You should also make sure that your return on investment (ROI) is the best that it can be. If you are not receiving maximum ROI, design an ROI financial model that will help you put a plan in place. Making a detailed business case for how your organization can maximize ROI through SLM will lead you towards the next step in the process.

2. Determine what you want out of your future program 

After you’ve done a full diagnostic and maturity assessment, it is time to develop a strategy to determine what you want out of your future program. Figuring out how you can reach your goals will set your digital supply chain transformation in motion.

Whether your target state is basic or advanced digital supply chain, you need to know what parts of your current plan need to be optimized. Analyze your findings from your discovery and assessment period and use them as a guide for planning. You will also need a course of action for integration. A data integration plan will ensure that your organization remains safe and secure throughout this process.

Next, outline a skill set development plan. If your organization’s digital supply chain management skills aren’t where you need them to be to reach your target state, work in the time and resources required to make sure your business as a whole can assist in the success of the program.

Figuring out what you want from your future program also means having a blueprint for future decisions. Double check that you are considering all potential financial chargebacks and you’re thoroughly aware of policy definitions before you move onto the next phase in this transformation.

3. Design your program

Next, it is time to actually design your program, starting with data. The cleanup and management of the data provided should be at the top of your list. Build out entitlement records manually – or automatically through a reseller – so that you can analyze for entitlement, data import, and management. 

Once again, the team members involved are going to play a huge role here. Everyone who has hands on your transformation needs to have the proper training and structure required to keep it moving, especially when it comes to data and compliance management. Before you continue any further, ensure that you have a solid team in place to get the job done.

4. Build expertise and skill sets for involved team members

Once you have selected your team, you must then build up their expertise and skill sets based on the development plan established in phase two. This will ensure their continued adherence to the program as they improve. Go off of the foundation of existing digital supply chain management knowledge that they already have. Think of how each team member can be utilized to make your program reach its target state. If you match up team member skill sets just right, you will be able to align your organization’s software portfolio management for cross leverage.

Learn how your team succeeds at driving ongoing optimization. One optimization tactic to try is active management with a more local focus on specific, strategic tasks. This way, you will be able to efficiently work through the issue at hand while utilizing offshore transaction work. As long as you find a workflow that is realistic and easy to adopt, you’ll be able to guarantee an inherent governance in the future.

5. Begin operation of your digital supply chain management program 

Now that you have a plan in place and a skilled team ready to go, you have the greenlight to begin operation of your digital supply chain management program with a request, provide, manage, and change cycle. Let’s break those stages down:

  • Request - At the software request level, you’re going to be working through data quality, product evaluation, and receiving business approval. This will be the preliminary stage of your software lifecycle management program.
  • Provide - This will be your organization's pre-deployment phase. At this stage, you will have to check for license availability and end user license agreement checks. Here, you will work through contracts and ultimately software provision, packaging, and deployment.
  • Manage - This phase entails license administration, software compliance and usage, and spend and license optimization. Your program will be running at this stage, but will require stringent management.
  • Change - During the change stage, your organization would experience a software change and uninstallation. Licenses would be transferred or re-harvested, leading to software retirement.

6. Continuously improve and optimize the process

After you’ve completed these five steps, all there is left to do is to continue to improve and optimize your process. Keep open and consistent communication with your team members so that you’re constantly working together to solve problems and share ideas. This may mean holding bi-weekly or monthly meetings with your team. Your digital supply chain management program will be better for it.

After the transformation

If your original target was to reach basic SAM, then think about how you can make moves towards advanced SAM. Once you’ve crafted a solid plan, there is no harm in finding new ways to improve it. 

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Contact us 

Discover more about SoftwareOne’s Digital Supply Chain offering today to learn how you can begin transforming your program. Or, feel free to contact us directly to speak with an expert.

Contact us 

Discover more about SoftwareOne’s Digital Supply Chain offering today to learn how you can begin transforming your program. Or, feel free to contact us directly to speak with an expert.


SoftwareOne blog editorial team

Blog Editorial Team

We analyse the latest IT trends and industry-relevant innovations to keep you up-to-date with the latest technology.