Software Asset Management, or SAM, has been the guiding force of IT departments for decades. Does the influx of the cloud spell doom for SAM? Asset management has reduced software licensing compliance concerns and lowered IT maintenance costs by tracking software assets, but now many of the mainstream software providers (such as Adobe and Microsoft) are moving toward SaaS, eliminating some licensing concerns.
Yet a number of situations within today’s business environment still require asset management, including the influx of BYOD and the explosion of virtual computing. SAM isn’t dead, but it is morphing into TAM: Technology Asset Management. TAM asset management software allows IT to sustain their current IT environment while managing virtual assets and scaling for growth in the future.
Do you know who’s downloading what?
Managing Shadow IT Activities
Shadow IT, or users who download and use applications without the consent of the company or the IT department, mean that asset management is even more important than before. As many as one-third of all users in SaaS environments report downloading and using applications without asking permission. For the IT department, this means more vigilant tracking and managing of assets than ever before.
Monitoring Mobile Devices on the Network
Like Shadow IT, mobile devices are a security threat to all businesses. IT has to keep up with the mobile devices accessing the network, and identify which are potential threats, while maintaining a high level of service to users. TAM includes tracking devices, where SAM involved merely monitoring the software on the network. Though more comprehensive in nature, it highlights the ongoing need for asset management solutions.
Keeping Track of Virtual Machine Sprawl
As more software and applications move to the cloud, IT is faced with a sprawling virtual network to monitor, maintain, and manage. How can IT address virtual machine sprawl? IT needs to understand what software is used by which departments and for what purposes. Only when the needs of all the users are considered can IT offer solutions that work well for the enterprise as a whole. What does this mean? Better asset management software helps track what users use which software apps, and provide support and solutions for those apps and activities.
How are IT departments addressing these concerns? Cloud asset management software allows IT to centralize their operations, tracking all of the apps, devices, and virtual machines on the network to identify problems and find solutions. IT professionals can finally concentrate on the important aspects of asset management instead of the incidentals of the job.