AG FOODS Group wanted to make sure the software on the company’s PCs was properly licensed. The company hired IT consulting firm Tacoma to implement a Software Asset Management (SAM) program. As a result, AG FOODS Group now has total visibility into its software assets and is assured of its compliance with software licensing agreements. Implementing the SAM program has also helped the company achieve widespread organizational efficiencies.
Based in the Czech Republic, AG FOODS Group develops, produces, and distributes instant drink mixtures to customers throughout Europe. In early 2006, the company was concerned that it did not know the legal status of its software licenses. AG FOODS Group was purchasing and installing employee software based solely on user requests, without knowledge of how many licenses the company owned or the most cost-effective way to acquire new ones.
Company PCs run the Windows® XP Professional operating system and Microsoft® Office Standard Edition 2003. The server infrastructure includes HP server computers running the Microsoft Windows 2000 Server operating system. The company needed to ensure that its software complied with licensing agreements. It also wanted to implement a strategy for transparently and cost-effectively acquiring future software.
||The software assessment resulted in a pleasant surprise for us, and it provided reassurance that the state of licenses in our company was better than we had expected.
||AG FOODS Group
AG FOODS Group hired IT services company Tacoma to conduct a complete Software Asset Management (SAM) assessment. Since 1998, Tacoma has helped customers evaluate and optimize their software assets through effective management.
Tacoma conducted its engagement with AG FOODS Group using a standard SAM approach:
- Determine the complete software inventory installed on individual PCs and servers
- Review purchase documentation against installed software and regulatory requirements
- Create a report consisting of all licenses owned, including any shortages or surpluses
- Propose a way to rectify any licensing discrepancies
- Introduce effective SAM policies to optimize how the company purchases and maintains software
Tacoma completed the software inventory on the company’s 50 PCs and its servers using AuditPro software by truconneXion, in conjunction with Microsoft Office Word 2003 and Microsoft Office Excel® 2003 spreadsheet software to generate printed reports. Based on the results, Tacoma offered AG FOODS Group guidance on how to optimize its software investments and ensure that future software purchases were cost- effective.
The SAM assessment has given AG FOODS a precise, detailed, and verifiable account of its software assets, and, as a result, the company is now assured of its legal compliance. In addition, the company has new tools, information, and policies to help keep its installation processes organized and its purchases cost-effective.
- Total visibility into software assets. AG FOODS Group was surprised to learn that it was overlicensed by several dozen licenses in Microsoft Office Standard Edition 2003. Because the company did not know how many licenses it owned, employees had unnecessarily deployed OpenOffice in an effort to cut costs. “We were able to reclaim the available Microsoft Office licenses instead of using OpenOffice,” says a representative of AG FOODS Group. In addition to being overlicensed in some areas, the company learned that it was lacking licenses for several installed shareware products, which were never used. AG FOODS Group also had multiple installations of the same software products on different machines—the result of failing to remove programs from old machines that were replaced.
- Certainty of compliance. AG FOODS Group is now confident that its software licenses are in good legal standing, and can verify this in the event of an audit. Most of the issues the assessment revealed were minor errors that were easy to reconcile. “The software assessment resulted in a pleasant surprise for us, and it provided reassurance that the state of licenses in our company was better than we had expected,” says the representative of AG FOODS Group.
- Improved software management. The visibility the company gained with the SAM assessment resulted in more efficient software management. AG FOODS Group now has better insight into how to optimize new software purchases for the company, thereby making the most of its investments. It also has more PC storage space due to the absence of unnecessary and unused programs. And PCs are being used less for private purposes during office hours.
Based on the benefits the SAM assessment brought to the organization, the company has decided to repeat the process at regular intervals.
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Document published December 2007