Opinion

Navigating the Cloud: Why SAM is more important than ever

Julian Swan, director, compliance marketing EMEA at BSA

Cloud computing offers businesses the prospect of immense benefits — lower IT costs, greater operational efficiency, and increased protection against malware to name a few. For IT managers looking to reap these benefits, a key step should be implementing effective software asset management (SAM) practices. That is the somewhat surprising conclusion of a new BSA study released recently.

“Navigating the Cloud — Why Software Asset Management is More Important than Ever” details how SAM helps to unlock the potential of the cloud.  Conventional wisdom had been that there’s no need to worry about license compliance or other SAM concerns in the cloud. But it turns out that as more and more organisations shift their computing resources to the cloud, businesses that understand that SAM is just as critical and beneficial in the cloud as it is in traditional IT environments will have a competitive advantage.

In order for that business to successfully address the new licence compliance challenges the cloud presents, they must fully understand the why’s and how’s of deploying SAM in a cloud environment. BSA’s latest study gives IT managers the critical guidance they need to help their organisations realise the benefits of the cloud.

“Navigating the Cloud” describes how the principles behind SAM remain the same even as businesses move to the cloud. In both traditional and cloud environments, the practice of managing the lifecycle of software assets within an organisation and remaining compliant with software licence agreements is critical for all organisations that use software. Properly deploying SAM in either environment positively impacts an organisation’s assets, operations and bottom line. While effective SAM is a cloud enabler, ineffective SAM can undermine the benefits of cloud implementation.

The ability to provision services in almost real time is a new and unique benefit of the cloud environment. This rapid deployment of software and services, however, may present those managing an organisation’s software assets with unfamiliar challenges. In “Navigating the Cloud,” BSA offers advice on the risks of improperly managed software assets and how businesses can deploy effective SAM practices to mitigate those risks.

While transitioning to the cloud has created a host of new challenges for IT professionals, the operational and monetary benefits that organisations achieve are strong incentives to move away from the traditional software environment. “Navigating the Cloud” underscores BSA’s commitment to helping organisations understand and implement strong SAM practices.

This was first published in December 2013

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