This well-known aerospace manufacturer has a workforce spread across the globe and a yearly IT software spend of approximately $450 million. When an unexpected IBM audit landed a few years ago they were unable to gather the data required to respond and subsequently had to negotiate a final and costly settlement of over $200 million. Part of the settlement was agreeing to install the IBM License Metric Tool (ILMT) and having Anglepoint install it. Based on this advice from IBM, they engaged Anglepoint’s IBM team to implement ILMT as they lacked the experience in-house to do this. They wanted to ensure they were compliant and avoid further IBM investigation.
During this engagement, the client informed Anglepoint that they were 6 months into an RFP process for SAM tooling and services and that they recognized the shortfall within the business in their ability to manage their major software publishers and the need to regain control of their IT estate. The client requested that Anglepoint participates in the RFP as they considered Anglepoint their trusted partner. Upon reviewing the RFP, Anglepoint suggested a different approach that would provide a long-term ITAM Program transformation but ultimately allow them to realize substantial cost and risk avoidance. The client realized this was the option that would deliver a strong ITAM function and ultimately provide the ongoing process and governance that was needed.
Eight years on, the client is still seeing continuous improvements across the organization, has a fully functioning and effective ITAM operation, better departmental collaboration and is realizing consistent year-on-year savings.
This aerospace manufacturer had no developed SAM tools to provide data, no trained software asset management function in-house and no managed service provider. An IBM audit uncovered about $200 million in non-compliant use of software of which they had no understanding or visibility due to a lack of licensing knowledge and data that could be utilized. They simply didn’t have the experience, expertise, or tools to manage the software audit effectively and avoid the unbudgeted spend. This resulted in a very costly settlement fee and a requirement to work with an IBM partner to implement ILMT. With no in-house understanding of the basics of Software Asset Management let alone the complexities of IBM licensing they needed expert support and IBM recommended Anglepoint as an ILMT implementer to roll out ILMT and help them gain control of their spend.
The client’s procurement team was working in a silo, procuring software but not managing the deployment or governance. The SAM function was essentially a request management process where procurement provided the software but didn’t know how to measure it or track it, and didn’t know the basics of entitlement versus license consumption. There were no processes in place that aligned with standards.
A Need For Process, Governance and Accurate Data
The audit experience made them realize that if they had that degree of non-compliance with IBM, what problems could be uncovered with other software publishers? They determined that they needed to embark on an RFP process to find a managed service provider and SAM tooling to provide the process, governance and data that would be required to avoid a repeat of the IBM audit. The RFP was also to be managed by the procurement team with no knowledge of SAM or a real understanding of what they would need, being led by the vendors and unable to make informed decisions that would be best for the business in the long term. This would put them in the hands of the service provider with no internal control. With around 40,000 servers, 145,000 employees, and tens of thousands of devices (many of which are off the network in government off network site that would also need to be tracked), the complexities were huge. The result was an RFP that simply didn’t meet the requirements of the business.
This was the tip of the iceberg for this organization as further challenges unfolded throughout the ensuing process. With procurement having no ITAM understanding further compounded by a consistent change of personnel, not only was deployment not being tracked but entitlement information was not being stored centrally, and in some cases, not stored at all. The requirement had expanded to not only a SAM tool implementation but a data-gathering exercise across the entire organization to piece together information that would build an accurate CMDB. The task would be largely manual whilst tools were being rolled out and gap analysis performed. With no existing SAM team the selected provider would need to become the SAM team.
From a list of several vendors that had been vying for the RFP for six months, Anglepoint entered the process with just a few weeks to spare. Through a well-articulated solution suggestion presented by our experts, the client saw that they would be in capable hands with Anglepoint. With a strategy that met the client’s needs and could be adapted as they matured and having already seen the results that were being delivered with the ILMT rollout and the work that was required to get their IBM estate in order, they knew they had found a trusted partner. Anglepoint became the SAM team.
ITAM Program Transformation Puts Them Back in Control
The solution that was put forward would split the tool requirement from the service provider, allowing the client to access the necessary expertise to help them build a clear roadmap for ITAM and the tooling they would require. This would mean that they would ultimately be in control of the decision-making and would be able to grow a strong SAM function within the business that would be able to utilize the data provided by the tool.
Anglepoint’s experts began by deploying a tactical approach that meant utilizing any data sources that existed, including HP Asset Manager, HP Universal Discovery (UD), and Dependency Mapping Inventory (, overlaying this with manual discovery. They prioritized the publishers and experts across Anglepoint’s publisher teams and created Effective License Positions (ELPs). They were able to start to build a clearer picture of data that would then feed the CMDB. Throughout the process, the Anglepoint IBM team was deploying and improving ILMT, and as contract renewals or software audits presented themselves, they were also supported with the SAM expertise required to ensure optimal outcomes – optimized renewals and well-managed audits with less painful settlement fees. Relationships with the vendors were improved, and the client was becoming more proactive in their software management and cloud management. Subsequently, the number of audits received was reduced as the publishers no longer saw them as a revenue opportunity. To this day there have been zero dollars in findings for any of the publishers managed by Anglepoint due to software audits.
Anglepoint then brought product experts, rather than salespeople, from shortlisted tool vendors to the table to allow the client to understand what capabilities the tools offered, and this process enabled them to choose ServiceNow based on the real needs of the business. The priority was the governance of a large and complex estate to manage and mitigate risk. Besides the financial impact, risk mitigation was key – as a government contractor, any risk is unacceptable. As processes were established that would include procurement, deployment and harvesting, technology stabilized and the client was able to start growing the internal team, starting with a Senior Manager of ITAM who became the key stakeholder and allowed the client to take more control internally. This enabled them to build decentralized collaboration across the business and further strengthen the processes put in place to manage their software estate effectively.
Eight years on, the client and Anglepoint have a highly effective partnership. Anglepoint’s deep expertise paired with the client’s growing internal team ensures that the SAM function is relevant and valuable. The team provides relevant data to all areas of the company and has cemented itself as a valuable part of the overall company strategy. The cross-functional collaboration means that procurement and SAM began to see each other as mutually beneficial and integral to each other’s outputs. Procurement now has a clear view of what software and cloud to purchase for renewals and SAM knows what has been purchased, deployed and is being consumed.
Risk across all the major software publishers has been mitigated through the provision of accurate and trustworthy data and remediation guidance. This amounts to $10+ million in IBM software savings and $10+ million on Microsoft software.
Optimization of Adobe licenses via bundling and downgrade rights saved $3 million and a recommended approach for covering Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) delivered $1.8 million annually. Oracle ULA certification produced $6 million dollars a year in savings. Oracle Java remediation uncovered over $5 million a year in savings
In total, there is approximately a 5-6% in cost savings delivered on the $450 million spent annually.
The partnership means that the client can change and adapt year-over-year. Anglepoint continues to support this client as they mature their software asset management function.
An IBM audit uncovered about $200 million in non-compliant use of software of which they had no understanding or visibility due to a lack of licensing knowledge and data that could be utilized.
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