The Key to Success

Controlling Your SAM Activities

Why Controlling Will Boost The Efficiency Level of Your SAM Activities

How the Awareness for SAM Has Transformed in Recent Years

In its findings, the study concludes that an integral software asset management concept significantly reduces software expenditure and can help to prevent incorrect licensing. Moreover, proactive software management enables the establishment of agile IT infrastructures that are tailored precisely to their intended purpose.

Nevertheless, companies have not implemented these principles with sufficient efficiency in the past. Among the reasons for this – according to the techconsult study – was that only in around one third of the 200 interviewed companies did SAM receive active support and promotion at management level. Indeed, over ten percent claimed that SAM would have no influence on company performance.

Awareness surrounding SAM has transformed in recent years for a whole variety of reasons:

  • Software vendors have increased their audit activities significantly 
  • Outside of IT, compliance has become one of the most important management factors of them all 
  • Companies are facing new challenges due to cloud consumption models

These days, numerous companies no longer ask themselves whether SAM is needed. Instead they are calling increasingly for transparent measurability in regard to the results of software asset management.

Why the Balanced Scorecard Concept is Equally Suitable for SAM

The American economist Robert S. Kaplan developed the concept of the balanced scorecard (BSC) as part of a study. The aim was to create an approach for performance measurement, whose focus was not placed solely on financial indicators and that would enable more than just a backward-looking, historical evaluation.

Different areas of a business, so-called perspectives, are considered from a holistic perspective in order to assess their performance. The strategic alignment of a company can be modelled and defined more precisely through the assignment of suitable targets and metrics to these perspectives.

At the same time, the BSC indicates the correlation between visions, objectives, control parameters and measures. For instance, it shows a connection between strategy and the definition of measures, hence permitting clear visualization of strategies and therefore increasing the probability of their implementation.

The balanced scorecard system uses both short and long-term objectives, monetary and non-monetary metrics, late and early indicators, as well as external and internal perspectives. It is therefore an outstanding controlling instrument within software asset management as well.

How Active Controlling Using the Balanced Scorecard Method can Increase the Efficiency of SAM

The balanced scorecard can be used to model and operationalize targets and sub-targets of software asset management strategies. The concept permits a free selection of perspectives that can be adapted ideally to suit SAM.

The definition of success factors, performance indicators, target values, measures and responsibilities – as well as their presentation in a cause/effect model – create an approach offering holistic assessment of SAM in a practical setting. Proceeding in this way helps to increase the efficiency of software asset management, while ensuring its integration within the IT department’s strategic planning.

Figure 1: Balanced Scorecard, Source: SOftwareONE

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Stefanie Wucher

Senior SAM Consultant

Strategic Software Asset Management, Software Asset Management Processes

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