By Eric J. Feldman | @EricJFeldman
Flexera Software was a sponsor of the IT Procurement Summit known as Caucus, the annual conference of the Association of Technology Acquisition Professionals.
I had the opportunity to speak with many of the attendees, most of whom were sourcing and procurement professionals. We spoke about some of their pain points and challenges, especially in the areas of IT Asset Management and Software Asset Management.
One might guess that a common thread through these conversations was about the challenges of managing the software lifecycle, negotiating with vendors, managing contracts, and other aspects related to the procurement role. That was certainly true, but what struck me the most about the challenges of sourcing professionals was working within the silos that exist for IT Procurement and IT Operations.
Quite often, I heard that procurement was in a reactionary role in regard to software asset management, often facilitating the transaction between IT and the software vendor. It terms of defining the business needs for software licensing, or establishing the scope of a particular software contract negotiation or purchase, they might have little input. One of the attendees told me about his company forming as a result of a merger between 5 separate entities, each with their own IT groups, software license agreements, and asset management teams. And a new centralized sourcing and procurement team was challenged with meeting their needs without visibility into what software they already had deployed.
As I spoke with these attendees, I realized that there was a specific solution that could help break down the barriers between procurement and IT operations, and that was a common, comprehensive, and accessible source of hardware and software inventory, application usage and license entitlement data.
What would be some of the information that could help the sourcing professional be in the driver’s seat for vendor negotiations, and help them negotiate the best contract and the highest discount? What would give them the ability to consolidate vendors and applications in partnership with IT Asset and Operations Managers?
- A comprehensive inventory of normalized software and hardware inventory
- Visibility into software usage and usage trends
- A thorough list of redundant and obsolete apps in the environment
- The data needed to reconcile license entitlements and inventory to help determine an accurate license compliance position
- A solution to automate the license reclamation process to defer new license purchases and reduce expenditures
The new FlexNet Normalized Inventory solutions from Flexera Software can help these sourcing procurement professionals gain visibility and control of their IT estate by having a complete view of deployed hardware and software assets.
FlexNet Normalized Inventory for Clients and FlexNet Normalized Inventory for Servers are the foundational solutions of FlexNet Manager Suite for Enterprises. Thousands of enterprises use Flexera’s discovery, inventory and normalization technology as the critical first step in business processes that eliminate manual effort, improve software security, maintain license compliance and reduce software costs.
The FlexNet Normalized Inventory products are part of Flexera Software’s intelligent solutions for managing software. They deliver the single source of truth for normalized inventory data used by Procurement, IT Operations, Finance, and Security. The FlexNet Normalized Inventory products support more than 16,000 software publishers and 190,000 software titles to ensure comprehensive coverage of the IT environment.
- Improve visibility and control of IT assets
- Identify unauthorized software (freeware, games, etc.) in the environment which could pose a security risk and impact productivity
- Drive rationalization and consolidation of the software portfolio
- Reduce management and support costs
- Get data to more efficiently manage mergers and acquisitions
- Provide software installation and usage data to enable chargeback and showback processes to allocate costs internally.
If you want to learn more about how normalized inventory can help you gain a complete view of installed software and make better purchasing decisions, be sure to view our on-demand webinar, "The Power of Normalized Inventory—Gain Insights into Your Business to Reduce Cost and Risk."