Chances are you’ve seen more than one fantasy film with the word “secret” or “secrets” in the title—The Secret of NIMH, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty. Indeed, there’s something about “secret” that grabs our attention and draws us in.

By the same token, it’s a safe bet that theatres won’t be showing “The Secret of Surviving a Software Audit” any time soon—but the script could be compelling because lots of people—IT staff in particular—lose sleep worrying about such audits. And for good reason. As you’ll discover in the Ivanti white paper 10-Step Software Audit Plan: Don’t Wait for The First Notice to Start Making Your Plan:

  • Malware from unlicensed software costs companies worldwide nearly $359 billion a year.
  • Software vendors are playing cop in the IT world through software audits to see that organizations pay for the technology they use.
  • Your organization could be audited this year. Around 66% of organizations can expect at least one audit in the next 12 months according to estimates from Gartner. 1

Software License Compliance Audits Make People Lose Sleep 

People toss and turn worrying about whether they’ve actually complied with confusing and operationally challenging regulatory mandates. They worry about whether they can credibly prove compliance to potentially skeptical auditors. And they worry about how badly an audit “fire drill” will disrupt their team and consume productivity that’s badly needed elsewhere.

But this doesn’t have to be the case. As explained in another Ivanti white paper Compliance for Today’s Complex Audit, a people-centric, policy-automated approach to IT operations means you can reduce the risk of non-compliance dramatically. You can provide auditors with impressive, credible documentation of your compliance measures. And you can minimize compliance costs by ensuring that your IT operations are always inherently audit-ready.

Best of all, this level of compliance confidence can actually be a secondary benefit of your people-centric, policy-automated IT operations. The primary benefit is the ability to connect your people to the digital resources they need to do their jobs every day—faster, more securely, more accurately, and with less labor—even as your digital business keeps changing and expanding. People-centric, policy-automated IT is a win for compliance leaders, IT teams, employees, the business, and its customers.

The Secret to Surviving an Audit? A Software Audit Plan

With a software audit looming in your future, the secret to survival is understanding what to expect and the steps you must take to ensure compliance. Don’t wait until the first notice arrives to start making your plan.

A Software Audit Plan is a guide of steps to take after receiving an audit letter. If followed, these steps can help reduce the audit’s financial and productivity impact on your organization. These steps will most likely be consistent between software publishers but can be modified to meet specific requirements as needed. Approximately 46% of organizations have no written policies on the use of licensed software. 2 Make sure your organization is among the 54% that do.

10-Step Software Audit Plan

The Ivanti white paper 10-Step Software Audit Plan: Don’t Wait for The First Notice to Start Making Your Plan provides more detail about each of the audit plan’s 10 steps:

  1. Receipt of Audit Letter
  2. Involve Legal Immediately
  3. Set Up a Mandatory Meeting for All Applicable Parties or Departments
  4. Negotiate a New Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) with the Software Publisher
  5. Negotiate Audit Terms
  6. Gather Relevant Data
  7. Send Data to Software Publisher (Nothing More, Nothing Less)
  8. Negotiate Outcomes
  9. Record Results
  10. Prepare for the Next Audit

To get some advice on how you can best tackle software audits, join our webinar “What to Say and What NOT to Say to a Software Auditor” on April 16, 2019. Save your spot today!

Gartner: Nine Steps to Survive Your Next Software Audit (Gartner IT Sourcing, Procurement, Vendor & Asset Management Summit 2018)
2017 Global software study conducted by BSA

Compliance Tips and Best Practices graphic