It is very rare for organizations to share their SAM experiences. Some are worried they might be perceived as unorganized for needing SAM in the first place, while others might feel it's like airing their dirty laundry in public. Neither could be further from the truth.
Software licenses are inherently complicated and need to be managed by professionals. They are written by the smartest lawyers in the world to protect the intellectual property of software companies that hire them. You wouldn’t go toe-to-toe with a laywer without enlisting your own professional help, so why would you manage software licenses that way?
Darryl A. Smith, NASA’s Agency Software Manager, understands that SAM is necessary and nothing to be shamed of. Darryl’s forward thinking, combined with the sterling journalistic efforts of FedTech, have given us this rare insight into how a SAM programme was responsible for saving NASA over $103 million in just over five years.
The story starts in 2008 when NASA created the Enterprise License Management Team (ELMT) to inventory its software assets and centrally manage software purchases. Since then, NASA has leveraged its buying power to take advantage of volume pricing. It also has identified unused software licenses in some locations for re-use elsewhere. It is these efforts that have netted NASA with $103 million in cost savings since 2011.
This project is doubly exciting because it doesn't stop with NASA, which is obviously just one of many government agencies that buy software. The US government as a whole spends roughly $6 billion each year on commercial software, so all agencies have a strong incentive to improve software license management and cut costs. With that in mind, the Office of Management and Budget began requiring each agency to appoint a software manager to oversee software licenses and maintain an accurate inventory of those licenses using automated SAM tools.
The Office of Management and Budget requires a team of senior federal IT and acquisition leaders — called the Enterprise Software Category Team — to negotiate governmentwide software license agreements with vendors.
The team discusses their software needs every week and decides how to collaborate together to purchase government-wide contracts, instead of multiple agency-specific deals. The GSA has already completed three contracts with this approach, with a new deal to purchase Adobe software potentially saving as much as $350 million. In another example, a brand of mapping software has been discounted by up to 14 percent.
This article is an extract from the article “How NASA Saved $100 Million on Software Licenses” on FedTech. I strongly encourage you to head over to the original article on FedTech to read more.
Our work with government agencies in Australia
SOS has delivered many successful SAM consultancies for government agencies in Australia. In 2016 we took home the coveted Microsoft Worldwide SAM Partner of the Year award based on one of our government agency projects.
SOS has undertaken numerous SAM projects for government agencies in Australia. In fact, we won Microsoft’s “Global SAM Partner of the Year” award for one such project for saving one government agency many millions of dollars on their software costs.
If you are a government agency looking to do the same, why not get in touch and see how we can help.