Software Asset Management – View vs. Do
If you can’t see it, you can’t manage it. Any Software Asset Management (SAM) guru will tell you that visibility is a key requirement that forms the fundamental basis for a successful SAM program.
With vast sprawling IT environments that are now without boundaries and with the inclusion of IoT devices, visibility will continue to be the a key fundamental in the discipline of Software Asset Management.
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The first technical step that needs to be undertaken therefore is Discovery. Discovery is a statement that’s a bit similar to: "I have some stuff out there, somewhere... not sure what or where, precisely."
Discovery then trawls through multiple layers of your IT estate and presents you back with a lot of data on many differing types on hardware assets (desktop, laptops, network devices, printers, etc.) and maybe even details on software assets contained within the hardware.
The more that comes back, the more needs to be managed accordingly—but we’ll get to that shortly.
The next technical step is then what’s termed as Inventory. This aligns closely to Gartner’s Six Critical Activities to Optimize Enterprise and Data Center Software License Compliance and Spending.
Inventory gives us even more rich data—not just the highlights, but the detail within. It’s in this detail that we as Software Asset Managers can then start to be strategic and tactical and actively manage the vast mix of assets deployed today.
What we have so far is a fantastic View, and as stated before, this is key as it sets the trajectory for everything that benefits from SAM, e.g., reduce spend, increased security, reduce risk, increase governance.
Many vendors, certainly in the SAM point solution market, will provide these great views, insights and data, but this only forms part of what should be considered a full SAM solution.
Actionable Software Asset Management
Ivanti takes SAM to the next level. Not only does Ivanti provide the View piece but also the Do. From the Discovery and Inventory steps, many datasets and metrics have already been supplied.
As an agile business that wants to ensure harmony across all solutions, a one vendor approach that enables View and Do—automate tasks, business rules, and workflows natively that ensure a consistent and holistic approach to ITAM and more specifically, SAM.
The Do—Actionable Software Asset Management, natively within Ivanti:
Discovery and Inventory, from Datacenters to End User Devices. Ordered and managed through Service Management with ‘out of the box’ CMDB, customers will be able to keep an audit log and track all changes to the environment.
Changes that can be initiated via automated workflows geared toward reclaiming unused software. In turn, updating License Optimizer to reflect within the license records that a license has been released.
Maybe you’re an end user that wants to request software? The Service Catalogue provides a rich end user experience that will allow request and approvals all within one platform for a seamless end-to-end experience.
The approval triggers flow to Endpoint Management—deploy software to the right user and the right device. Ongoing software metering, remote control capabilities to support end users or optimize the end user experience and productivity with built in capabilities to speed up log on times.
Ongoing management of deployed software is also built into the Ivanti solutions.
Security plays a vital role within SAM. With security breaches being the new normal, the rush is on to implement effective security practices and ensure proper patch compliance. And with the rising number of vulnerabilities in third-party applications, this includes solutions that install critical security updates for more than just Microsoft products.
Governance of applications is also possible with Application Control. Now you can manage user privileges and policy automatically, at a granular level, and allow for optional self-elevation when exceptions occur. Plus, you can prevent unauthorised code execution and enforce software licencing. Whilst the View is critical to SAM, the ability to execute on the ‘View’ and thus, ‘Do’ allows you to execute your SAM strategy efficiently, easily and natively with one vendor.