Our client is a statutory agency for the Australian Government, responsible for administering federal legislation, and other associated matters.
Our client manages a complex IT environment that encompasses mainframe, midrange (developer, test, and production levels) and desktop environments.
As with nearly all government agencies, our client faced a common challenge of trying to deliver increased services despite diminishing operating budgets, and as part of its strategic objectives, it was looking closely at its IT department, to see where it could save costs.
In particular, the organisation had identified a large and ever-increasing portion of its IT budget was related to the purchase and ongoing maintenance of commercial off-the-shelf software. The software it uses to enable its environment is sourced through various arrangements, including via software resellers, directly from vendors, and is also often provided as part of service arrangements with third-party service providers. This level of complexity made it extremely difficult for the client to adequately manage its software assets, which led to the inefficient usage of software, and sub-optimal commercial arrangements.
With planned growth in the future, our client wanted to increase its capability to provide visibility over its holistic software usage, contracts, and obligated vendor requirements. This would also ensure that legal risks such as vendor penalties from non-compliant deployments would not threaten its public reputation or result in penalties.
To achieve this, our client wanted to establish a fully managed Software Asset Management (SAM) service that would enable it to track software assets across all areas and at various points of its lifecycle, and in turn, enable it to effectively negotiate contracts.
The objectives of the service were to:
- Achieve tangible savings, cost avoidance and improved delivery of services to Agency software consumers.
- Increase awareness and mitigation of commercial and business risks.
- Improve vendor relationships and return on investment.
Working in collaboration with the client to understand the priorities and requirements of the SAM Managed Service, we offered a solution that would encompass five key disciplines:
- SAM strategy and planning
- Software procurement, including negotiation
- Software contract management
- Licence administration
- Licence audit and compliance.
The SAM Managed Service was able to seamlessly integrate software management strategy, processes, people, and technology across the core disciplines, and allowed our client to adopt a more strategic and pro-active position in relation to the investment and management of software.
In the initial three years of the SAM Managed Service, our client was able to identify significant software savings and cost avoidance, totaling tens of millions of dollars.
As it continues to modernise the end user experience and provide increased flexibility to its workforce, its software portfolio will increase and with it, the environment and contractual mechanisms in which the software is provisioned will grow in complexity. The SAM Managed Service will prove vital in ensuring the organisation is well positioned to take advantage of the technical flexibility and commercial benefits that these initiatives provide, whilst operating within the applicable commercial and technical constructs.