The Top 5 SLM Best Practices
When it comes to your company’s spending patterns, software is probably taking the biggest bite out of the budget. According to the latest forecast by Gartner, investment in enterprise software will grow by 11% in 2022 and another 11.9% in 2023. If you’re responsible for the IT budget at your organization, you need to put SLM best practices at the top of your to-do list.
Table 1. Worldwide IT Spending Forecast (Millions of U.S. Dollars)
2021 Growth (%)
2022 Growth (%)
2023 Growth (%)
|Data Center Systems|
Why Are SLM Best Practices Important?
As your company grows, your need for software increases. When you spend more on software, your risk of losing money increases, as well. There are two reasons for this:
When you have software that’s not being used, your end-users are not using all of the features available, you’re wasting money. A recent study from Flexera found that 31% of desktop software spend, 29% of data center software spend, and 29% of SaaS software spend is unused or underutilized in most companies.
Regardless of the size of your company, if software publishers find unlicensed installations in your environment during a routine audit, the result will be costly, sometimes devastating. Software publishers treat non-compliance akin to software piracy, and will come down hard.
With unused software eating up so much of your IT budget and the risk of racking up hefty SLM (Software License Management) non-compliance fines, it’s critical to get your software license management under control now. How you do it is by implementing SLM best practices.
As an ITAM consultant and coach, I live my life deep inside the world of software license management at large companies and enterprises. There are plenty of reasons why, as hard as those companies tried, they were unable to unravel the confusion and intricacies of their software licensing: management changes, changes in staffing, and mergers and acquisitions, etc. Why? Because software license best practices were never put in place or done improperly.
If you’re in this situation, here’s a list of my software license best practices to get you started:
The Top 5 SLM Best Practices
- Build Your Team. A good asset manager must lead your team. That person needs the proper training and experience to provide calm and steady guidance during the first chaotic weeks of getting the rest of these software license best practices in place. If you don’t have one on staff, hire a coach to help you find the right person. Because the right person doing the right job is critical.
- Have A SAM Tool In Place. Licensing rules are too complicated and computing environments change too rapidly for any one person to keep up. Offloading the mundane, wrote, and repeatable tasks to a SAM tool or ticketing system will free the ITAM team for the more effective cost-control work. The more automation you put in place, the better.
- Implement Supportive Policies, Standards & Procedures. Your team and your tools need the support of the C-suite. Define your direction, grant clear authorities and responsibilities to the right teams, build out metrics and reports to enforce your standards, and be willing to stick to them.
- Enforce The Asset Lifecycle. The asset lifecycle helps your team and your SAM tool organize all the information coming in from your computing environment. Make sure these are clearly and uniquely defined, and the resulting reports will help you can make better business decisions.
- Get Your ITAM Team Engaging With Other Teams. IT security has details that will help your SAM team understand the computing environment. Legal will help them understand the software contracts and conditions. HR will warn you early of employee changes which will signal opportunities for you to recover and redeploy assets. The sooner these conversations happen, the more opportunities you’ll have to cut costs.
If SLM Best Practices Are Not In Place
Without software license best practices, not only is your company more vulnerable to penalties, but your department and position can be at risk. After all, no IT director or ITAM lead dreams of being the root cause of an enormous penalty merely because strong practices were not in place.
How I Can Help
Implementing software license best practices is complex for companies of all sizes, particularly for the enterprise. If flaws in your ITAM and SAM implementations are costing you time, money, and jeopardizing your organization’s reputation, it’s time to get some help.
My Pragmatic ITAM Method provides inarguable defense against software audits, manages your assets efficiently, bolsters cybersecurity by implementing best practices, and solves program failures – permanently.
And best of all, I coach and teach your existing staff how to implement SLM best practices. So, when I leave, they have all the knowledge and expertise to make the improvements permanent.