App Store Essentials: Using Your App Store to Help Optimize Software Spend

By Laura
Noonan

In many companies, more than one third of total IT spend
goes toward software licenses, so it’s no wonder that IT executives are looking
for effective ways to optimize software license usage and minimize software
spend. Consequently, an important goal within IT is to establish a
comprehensive Software License Optimization process that aggregates, normalizes
and reconciles software inventory, purchase order, usage data, license entitlement,
product use rights and other information from enterprise business systems and determines
an accurate license position.

Your
enterprise app store can be an integral part of your overall Software License Optimization
program by helping you eliminate the waste that occurs when software that is
installed on user machines sits idle.

The
good news is that an enterprise app store with the right feature set can help
you track down unused software and then reclaim the associated licenses. The
benefit: You spend less on software because you don’t buy additional licenses
unless all the software you own is actually being used. Two features in
particular are instrumental in helping you do this: license reclamation and
software leasing.

Let’s start with license
reclamation
. Here’s how this feature helps:

  • License reclamation leverages installation and
    usage data to automatically identify software that is deployed but unused.
    Usually the organization specifies a period of time in which the software is
    unused, for instance 90 days, after which the software becomes a candidate for
    reclamation.
  • Your
    app store should include the ability to conduct automated email campaigns, so you
    can engage users in the reclamation process by sending a message that offers
    the option of keeping an application or surrendering it.
  • If the users opt to surrender the application,
    the app store then triggers a de-install of the application through your
    software deployment tool. The software license management tool will detect the
    removal of the software at the next inventory collection and add the license
    back to the available pool.
  • Effective
    license reclamation campaigns track user responses for you and provide full
    visibility into results, including how many users did and did not respond, the
    percentage of users who opted to keep or surrender the software and the users’
    justification for keeping software.

Now let’s look at software
leasing
.
Leasing is particularly useful in project-based environments where
application needs change as employees move from one project to another as well
as in environments in which contractors are brought in to perform specific
functions for a period of time. Here’s how leasing helps:

  • Leasing gives users access to an app for a
    limited period of time, after which the license is reclaimed automatically
    unless the user extends the lease.
  • An effective leasing capability gives you the
    flexibility to set a maximum lease time and a default lease time based on the
    needs of your business.
  • When a lease is about to expire, it’s important
    to have an automatic notification capability so users aren’t caught off guard
    and they can extend the lease if necessary.

As you can see, license reclamation and software leasing options
give you a real edge in optimizing usage and spend. Some companies report that
they were able to recoup nine times the acquisition cost of the app store
solution within six months simply by using license reclamation capabilities.

Read
the next blog in the App Store Essentials
series, “Connecting Your App Store to IT Service
Management Systems,” to find out how integrating your app store with solutions such as BMC Remedy, ServiceNow and
Microsoft Service Manager brings the app store into your service management
processes to ensure that software delivery complies with corporate policies and
external regulations.

For more information about implementing a successful
enterprise app store and unifying the software request, application packaging,
deployment and license management processes, read Creating
a Well-Stocked, Well-Managed Enterprise App Store
white paper.

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