As a license manager, managing and controlling software licenses and compliance is probably at the top of your priority list. Ensuring compliance and protecting against security risks is critical to the success and integrity of your organization. In this article, we’ll discuss the importance of software portfolio management for compliance and security, why it’s an absolute must-have for license managers, and how to establish a process that ensures compliance and security.
What is Software Portfolio Management?
Software portfolio management refers to the strategic approach to managing all software applications and licenses in a company. It includes the identification, documentation, organization, and control of all software assets. Effective software portfolio management enables you to maintain an overview of your software licenses, meet compliance requirements and minimize security risks.
Compliance: fulfillment of legal requirements
Compliance is an essential aspect for companies in every industry. Failure to comply with software license agreements can lead to legal consequences, such as fines or claims for damages. With software portfolio management, you can ensure that all software licenses in your company are acquired, used, and managed correctly.
Efficient software portfolio management provides you with a central overview of your software license agreements and enables you to compare them with the applications installed. This allows you to identify potential compliance violations at an early stage and take measures to rectify them before legal consequences arise.
Security: Protection against security risks
Cybersecurity threats are constantly on the rise, and software plays a central role in this. Insecure or unpatched software can lead to serious security breaches where sensitive data can be stolen, or the company network compromised.
With software portfolio management, you can ensure that your software is up to date and has received regular security updates. You can identify vulnerabilities and take appropriate measures to fix them. In addition, managing your software portfolio helps you to identify and remove unauthorized or insecure applications to close potential security gaps.
Increased efficiency and cost optimization
Well thought-out software portfolio management not only enables you to meet compliance requirements and protect against security risks, but also to optimize your IT resources. You can reduce software license costs by identifying and eliminating obsolete or unused software, adjusting maintenance contracts or subscriptions, and bundling new purchases. By better planning and using your software, you can increase efficiency in your company and avoid unnecessary expenditure.
The bottom line is this:
Effective software portfolio management is essential for license managers to meet compliance and security requirements.
In practice, software portfolio management includes identification, documentation, organization, and control, as described above. These components can be implemented using several methods, tools, and work steps. If possible, the whole thing should not always lead to spontaneous effort but should be established in the company.
Wouldn’t it be nice,
- if you had a process in your company that led to every software requirement being checked according to different criteria?
- Do you already have the software? Another, similar product? Another version of the same product?
- Is the software security-critical? Where is data stored? What third-party software is required?
- Is there a charge for the software? Is it audited?
- What are the manufacturer’s contractual conditions?
- If you could consciously decide based on the answers collected whether and what to procure and use?
- If all licenses and installations were well documented and continuously maintained?
We have developed supporting services for software portfolio management processes to relieve the burden on internal resources and ensure high quality.
Supported Software Catalog – Service
We have built up a database for our customers with which we support the individual Supported Software Catalog. This catalog contains all applications that may be used in the company (whitelist), but also all those that have already been rejected (blacklist). By collecting this information, we ensure that only recognized, tested, and approved software is used by our customers. The criteria for the software to be approved are developed jointly. After an initial review and documentation of the software used to date, the process for new software is introduced in parallel. This ensures continuity.
SAM Tool Managed Services
Once the decision to purchase software has been made, it must be systematically recorded, and its use monitored. There are several powerful SAM tools on the market for this purpose, but maintaining data and operating the tools is anything but trivial. This is why we have developed our SAM Tool Managed Services. We always guarantee a correctly maintained tool, meaningful reports and indications of optimization potential.
Software Contract Controlling
Purchased software also incurs running costs. Maintenance contracts are usually renewed automatically. Subscription contracts can expire unintentionally. Each of these term contracts must be reviewed in good time before the renewal date: Is the contract still needed? Do the contract terms still meet current market standards? Should the conditions be renegotiated? We take over contract controlling for our customers and ensure that each contract is assigned to a responsible person who can make the necessary decisions on time.
Software portfolio management sounds complicated. As with many seemingly unmanageable tasks, it helps to put together individual packages and secure targeted support from experts.
Our SAMtoa team will be happy to support you.
Management Director und License expert of SAMtoa GmbH