The company profiled in this case is one of the largest integrated energy companies in the world, with almost 30,000 employees located in more than 30 countries. With increasingly expensive software licenses used at research and production sites, managers needed to control costs and properly align IT investment with business. A metering and reporting tool for IT asset management was needed, one that could provide a snapshot of global software usage patterns to several layers of management for analysis and better planning. See below how they gained a ten-fold return on investment (ROI) through license cost savings in less than six months by, using Open iT metering software.
For IT Asset Managers in this technology-reliant company with roughly 1,700 high-end software users, supplying equipment needs, keeping costs down and assessing the value of each IT investment were ongoing challenges. It became increasingly important for business managers to see where and how IT resources contributed to the company’s bottom line. Additionally, a company merger required actions to eliminate duplicate software, to renegotiate vendor contracts and to provide management with an accurate reading of how and where costly IT investments were being used to further overall business goals.
Getting usage reports for management had always been difficult, since the process involved multiple steps by several individuals. It included the painstaking job of scripting and manually transferring data to Excel spreadsheets, with a reliance on technical personnel who had to set aside essential tasks in order to help..
“I was getting very tired of asking key technical personnel to help me manually put together Excel spreadsheets of software usage information,” explained the company’s Global Application Portfolio Manager. “I knew this information was critical to the company, but I also knew that important operational work had to be postponed as a result.”
The company was no effective way to integrate business data with usage data for company-wide chargeback. Management needed to see how IT expenses were used by each user at each location in order to make proper budget allocations, as well as to make critical business decisions. The same data was needed to properly negotiate the company’s long-term objectives with software vendors.
After reviewing several data-collecting and reporting software packages, and considering the development of an in-house solution, Open iT LicenseAnalyzer was chosen for its ease-of-use, Web- based reports and robust flexibility to accommodate company-specified functions. LicenseAnalyzer includes software inventory, with a real-time monitor and usage-reporting tool that analyzes software and license utilization over specified time periods. The initial installation, report format set-up and training, together with the integration of user data from the Active Directory, took less than two weeks. After this, software was installed locally on the nine regional sites in North America, Asia, Middle East and Europe, and the company appointed managers to be in charge of each site. Training sessions were held as online meetings. Each manager could readily see their own usage statistics for different applications and features, and compare this to the overall enterprise picture.
One of the key license reports has a table showing applications used, feature names, name of user, the business units they belong to, the site locations, the SAP cost centers, job titles, the total active time and the maximum number of licenses in use. The information could be regrouped at any time to target key areas of focus. Senior management could now access the reports directly, get the information they needed, and analyze company needs for future investments.
With Open iT LicenseAnalyzer, the company’s Site Managers, IT Asset Managers, and Senior Business Managers now all had access to software usage data for nine sites, worldwide. They could easily see the cost or profit center needs without asking for help from technical staff. License agreements were renegotiated with vendors using real data. Unnecessary expense from unused licenses was readily recognized and eliminated, and IT resources were consolidated and optimized.
“With Open iT Software in house, I can create all the reports I need,” explains the Global Application Portfolio Manager, “and even better, I know that all the other managers and analysts of software assets in our company on a regional level can do the same.”
One of the company’s Business Solutions Analysts stressed that “one of the most important features of our Open iT Software implementation was the addition of our Active Directory information to all of our reports. With these reports, we can get a very clear idea of an individual user’s application needs. We also use this information to provide usage statistics to management for accurate maintenance chargeback. Open iT Software has given us the ability to better understand the usage trends and value of our software.”
Using data from Open iT LicenseAnalyzer reports, license agreements have been renegotiated, and significant savings, 10 times greater than the initial cost of the metering solution, were realized in 6 months. Managers have ready access to relevant resource data, and can now streamline and guide expenditures to support the company’s overall business strategy.
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