Software is essential to running a business, and our reliance on it for daily operations continues to grow. In 2022, IT spending on enterprise software is expected to reach $672 billion worldwide, up 11% from 2021. And as the amount of software used in the enterprise increases, so does the need for Software Asset Management (SAM).
SAM is a business practice that encompasses processes and technology for understanding, tracking, managing, and optimizing software assets - from desktop applications and device drivers to operating systems, enterprise systems, security applications, server software, and more. It's a multidisciplinary practice that requires cross-functional collaboration, and when done right, can help organizations save money and reduce risk, both from a compliance and IT security standpoint.
According to a recent survey conducted by the ITAM Review, the number of software audits conducted by vendors is increasing, which puts pressure on IT departments to ensure their software assets are managed effectively. Software audits can take 60 days or more to complete, taxing IT resources and putting them at risk for steep fines for non-compliance. In addition to the threat of a time-consuming audit, failing to properly manage your software assets can result in vulnerabilities that go undetected, leaving the door open for cybercrime. Poor SAM can also result in missed opportunities for cost savings. If you don't have visibility into what software assets you have, how can you optimize your inventory to best meet the needs of your business?
Having tools and processes in place for effective SAM enables you to optimize your software asset inventory and is an essential part of a larger IT Asset Management strategy. SAM helps to reduce costs and mitigate legal and compliance risks associated with software licensing and entitlement. It helps IT teams identify and remediate potential vulnerabilities - for example, outdated OSes or security software - to improve an organization's overall cybersecurity posture. SAM also helps to enhance user productivity and maximize IT performance.
Importantly, SAM helps teams identify duplicate applications, unused software, and shadow IT, and understand where alternative licensing options can help reduce the costs of new software purchases. And when auditors knock on the door, SAM arms teams with all of the information they need, accelerating the auditing process and reducing related costs.
Licenseware's Modular Approach to SAM
According to Alexandru Cojocaru, CEO of Licenseware.io - the first open app ecosystem for SAM - companies typically manage their software apps one of two ways: manually using Excel spreadsheets or by using large, all-in-one software systems that provide more functionality than is needed. "Large Fortune 500 organizations have told us that end-to-end solutions that encompass the platform, implementation, and advisory services are not meeting their needs," Cojocaru said. "Instead, they need solutions that are specialized for specific high-risk vendors, such as Oracle, IBM, Microsoft, and others."
That's why Licenseware.io takes a modular approach. Modularity is important, said Cojocaru, since the need for SAM is often seasonal. For example, a vendor may initiate an audit in Q1, requiring preparation during Q4 of the previous year. Or, an organization may do an internal Microsoft audit at the end of a fiscal year because their cloud bill was too high. "Many companies don't have the budget to invest in a full year's license for a SAM tool, so they benefit from our modular approach," said Cojocaru.
The company currently offers six applications, some proprietary and some developed in collaboration with partners, targeted at specific areas of SAM. The apps are modular and specific, eliminating the need for monolithic SAM platforms while automating key SAM processes and tasks. Customers can choose to leverage only the functionality they need when they need it and pay for it only when they use it. "Our SAM applications are published to an open marketplace where organizations have the choice to pick and choose solutions based on what they need to solve and when," Cojocaru said. "When customers use all of Licenseware.io's applications together, they can benefit from consolidated reporting and higher-level insights into the organization's software usage."
Licenseware.io's company's SDK automatically generates about 70% of the code required for building an application. All the infrastructure is abstracted from the front end, eliminating the need for specialized backend engineers and long development cycles. What's more, Licenseware.io runs in a Dockerized environment, so it can be spun up anywhere - on-premises or in the cloud.
Lansweeper + Licenseware: A Symbiotic Partnership
To avoid reinventing the wheel, Cojocaru was in search of a software asset discovery solution to integrate into his apps that would provide access to complete and accurate software asset data - and Lansweeper was at the top of his list. "Lansweeper is a popular solution with a solid reputation in the market, and the technology would enable us to be data-agnostic." According to Cojocaru, his goal was to ingest data from the most common data sources for a particular product or group of products, leaving the remaining data sources available on demand. That way, customers can request an upload for a specific tool, and Lansweeper makes that fast and simple. "Lansweeper is a versatile tool that can be leveraged for a variety of use cases, including SAM," he said.
"Lansweeper is a versatile tool that can be leveraged for a variety of use cases, including SAM,"Alexandru Cojocaru, CEO of Licenseware.io
Cojocaru's team started by building an app loader for our Microsoft application. "Out of the box, we pull data from Lansweeper and provide a set of queries that are executed as custom reports," he said. "Customers simply export the data, drag and drop it into Licenseware.io, and access an analysis of existing software licenses."
Cojocaru said the partnership with Lansweeper is symbiotic because the technologies complement each other and provide added value to customers. "Customers benefit from rapid access to granular data about their software assets and licenses, delivered in a format that simplifies license management and audits," he said.
Licenseware.io is planning to release new applications for entitlement management and is branching out to provide support for additional software vendors such as Autodesk and Adobe. They have partnered with IBM Accelerate to build out a roadmap for developing applications that automate various SAM processes, as well. Also on the horizon is an API integration to Lansweeper Cloud. "Over the next year, we plan to develop apps for cloud cost management," Cojocaru said.
A Unified Vision for SAM
Cojocaru said that partnering with Lansweeper has been a smooth and exceptional experience. "Communication has been effective and the team is very professional," he said. "We were looking to partner with a mature company, so we could learn and grow as an organization, and Lansweeper fit the bill," he said. "Our visions are tightly aligned - and the fact that we're approaching the market together with a unified vision for the future of SAM is a powerful market play."
Seamlessly Integrate Licenseware with Lansweeper
Manage Software Assets More Effectively in Licenseware With Lansweeper.