Here’s Why Using Software Asset Management for Cloud Migration is a Good Idea

by October 15, 2015 0 comments

– Vikas Bhonsle, CEO, Crayon Software Experts India

Analysts have for long forecasted the adoption of cloud in IT companies. In the next two years, almost half of a company’s IT applications will be in the cloud. Navigating to the cloud can be a long, complex process. Realizing that your organization needs to move to the cloud is step one. The real challenge lies in getting there. An organization must realize the use and application with its software assets and how they will be affected by the migration.
Often the migration of an organization’s software to a cloud space is done haphazardly, and could cost businesses millions in revenue if not done by professionals. Software asset management fills that gap.
There are proficient professionals who are trained to carry out such tasks systematically and resourcefully. This is where Software Asset Management (SAM) comes into the picture.
Organizations that will be adopting cloud and moving their computing resources hand-in-hand with SAM will have a competitive edge over those who don’t. One must understand and face the new license compliance changes that the cloud will bring and be well equipped with SAM for the same.
If software asset management sounds like another post Y2K job title that no one has any idea of, and the description on the internet leaves you baffled after the first few sentences, it is vital –  the purpose of this dynamic function to be explained. If the whole migration exercise leaves you dumbfounded as well, then this is a good read for you.
Moving your software to the cloud: Anyone vs Software Asset Management
To illustrate this, we will use a very basic example. Your business can be described as a physical house, and the move to the cloud can be described as the actual act of moving house. Before you start packing, you need to work out how much stuff you have actually got, how many removal vans or trucks are you going to need?
You also need to start looking at the hoarders in your family, starting the clear out. You don’t want to move into your new home with the clutter that you had previously. Once you have sorted your clear out and you know exactly what you want to move, then you turn your focus to the removal companies, there are certain things in your home you wouldn’t want just anyone to move, for instance, family heirlooms and valuable paintings. Jewellery and antiques that can never be replaced. The very heart of your family heritage. If you are unable to make the move yourself, there is a very small chance of you actually asking every person that walks by on the street to help you move, in fear that these precious items could get damaged, lost or stolen. Also, for you to make the move yourself, it might take you days, if not weeks to drive between your new secure premises, and your old home.
The very same applies to your business software.  One needs to have absolute knowledge in the field, to attempt this yourself. This is a vital element as the future of your business may depend on it. You will need professionals who are well versed in this field, as well as have a good, sound reputation. This is where software asset management comes in.
What will Software Asset Management achieve?
There is a basic fundamental principle that is employed to ensure this is facilitated properly, and that principle is ensuring the right systems are in place. These can save the organization a lot of money by ensuring that
all cost-effective measures are employed. Plus, it addresses employee efficiencies and takes care of the following aspects:
•    It ensures that all safety and security measures are put in place, not only on the cloud, but also in terms of the transition
•    The actual move of the software is a very intricate process, and even the slightest error could jeopardize your information, so using SAM ensures client base confidentiality as well as other vital software information.
•    Provides a deeper understanding of your current assets, how they are accessed, controlled and utilised.
Some Challenges in Cloud Migration
There are quite a few challenges you’ll face while migrating your software to the cloud, mainly related to managing the life-cycle of your software assets. Here’s an overview of what to expect:
•    IP Infringement – SaaS provider may infringe on terms of third party IP, thereby putting the put end user of SaaS provider at risk.
•    Client side software components – ‘authorised users’ might be breached if any client side components (plug-ins, applets, agents etc.) are not managed effectively.
•    Unlicensed use – Violating geographical restrictions, shared logins, incorrect logins (e.g. Admin accounts rather than regular accounts), providing logins to third parties, generating value from the SaaS system and sharing with others who don’t have access, third party usage, limit by device or platform.
•    Economies of Scale / Total cost of ownership forecasts – static costs may not add any marginal value when scaling services.
•    SaaS subcontracting e.g. Impact of IaaS infrastructure provider’s outage on SaaS provider.
•    Migrating the existing software license to the cloud
•    Measurement of hardware – related licensing metrics in the cloud.
•    Software vendor Audits – audit provision for third party IaaS providers.
•    License reclaim if Cloud agreement is dismissed.
There are lots of challenges in moving your software assets to the cloud. SAM solutions help you understand what they are thereby saving you cost and making the migration effective.

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