Before we dive into the tasty tips of software management, let’s get into the dirty details:  

  • 76.4% of organizations admit to over-licensing  
  • 10 hours a week spent on average resolving data accuracy issues 
  • 25% of software license budgets are spent on software license “complexity” 
  • 50% of organizations have 12 or more discovery tools to help with licensing 

Don’t let your organization also wallow in the murky waters of software management, where things like security threats, software audits, shadow IT, and software lifecycles drown you. Let’s examine some life-saving tips that will rescue you from over-licensing and over-working.  

Tip #1: Get Visibility 

Stop wasting time and money with cumbersome spreadsheets! Ultimately, the goal is to track things that actually matter for software management, i.e. tracking spending by vendor, getting detailed usage data, and calculating your current compliance position. With a higher level of visibility, you can finally answer the why and who questions – “Why is software being installed but no one is using it?” “Who’s making software purchases?” -- in order to actually manage your software.  

Tip #2: Focus on Surplus.  

Once you’ve gained visibility of your software state, identify the surplus of license agreements you have and create a game plan. Pinpoint what licenses should be kept. Abstain from purchasing new ones. Resell extra licenses via UsedSoft or similar companies. Rationalize the apps you are using, i.e. only allow one app for similar work functions.  

Tip #3: Reduce Unused Software.  

With unused licenses hanging around, you’re liable for any security threats, noncompliance, or shadow IT that takes place in your software estate. But by identifying your surplus and thereby reducing the amount of unused software in your organization, you are also reducing its liability. Some helpful tips:  

  • Introduce a software usage policy, where an app unused for 90 or 120 days can be uninstalled from a particular machine. 
  • Identify and uninstall all unused software.  
  • Enact automated software reclamation policies. 
  • Implement software catalogs for ease of access when reinstalling apps that have gone unused but are now needed. 

Tip #4: Prepare for Next Renewal.  

Eventually, your next software renewal is going to come around and your software management process should include preparing for it so as to avoid over-licensing upfront. Before your next renewal, understand your usage and licensing. During the renewal, negotiate for better Terms & Conditions and search for volume discounts, both of which will save you time and money. Put yourself in a position of strength with preparation.  

Tip #5: Get Efficient.

Software management’s kiss of death is ultimately inefficiency. Though harder to track than the others, efficiency breeds smarter software usage. Some ways you can get efficient once your software estate has been cleaned out: use sophisticated tools for complex software (no more spreadsheets!), implement a software portal (facilitate the ease of software requests/installation), create an audit response team, or outsource your software management services (if you don’t have the time or resources to manage your own software state).   

Check out our on-demand webinar, “Steps to Cut your Software Spend by 30 Percent.” Then, check out our SAM and ITAM solutions. Ivanti can help you discover and inventory what’s on your networkpass every software auditcut your hardware and software costs, and achieve asset lifecycle management. Explore our solutions, then contact Ivanti, and let us help you improve management of all your enterprise’s IT assets.