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SAP Asset Management Saves Aerospace Company $11M

(February 2024)

Company Profile

  • Industry: Aerospace
  • Size: 140k employees
  • Revenue: $66B
  • Region: Global
  • Market: Mid-Market
Analysis:
$11.4M
optimization opportunity

Effective SAP Asset Management Case Study | EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

Like many other organizations, this engineering giant had struggled to manage its SAP estate at an enterprise level. It focused instead on relying on favorable terms and conditions and a supposedly healthy relationship with SAP to mitigate compliance and financial risk. For almost ten years, an internal license focal has supported Software License Management (SLM) and related SAM initiatives for SAP, interacting with procurement, IT finance, and product management to manage SAP. 

The client engaged Anglepoint to complete an enterprise-wide SAP Effective License Position (ELP) that included the full scope of SAP data and entities. Anglepoint identified millions of dollars of software license surplus because of collaborative meetings, data reviews, and license analysis. Additionally, future compliance risk was identified that was eliminated in 2023 due to the recommendations that Anglepoint proposed.

The Challenge

The organization is subject to high levels of security, and this has translated into internal communication challenges. A relatively new SAM team struggled to insert itself and obtain access to the data it needed for contract and entitlement to manage the SAP licenses. The external and internal relationships that they have with SAP stakeholders are political and managed at an executive level with relationships that have been forged over decades, which left them with little or no access to contracts and entitlement data. In turn, Anglepoint also struggled to get access to entitlements and contracts. With little data to support discovery efforts, recommendations and insights were only as good as the small amounts of data that Anglepoint had been provided with. The stance taken by procurement was that the terms and conditions for service providers didn’t allow the level of access required – as a result, it was a situation of “we don’t know what we don’t know”.

The protocols in place preventing access to entitlement and contracts data meant both the internal software asset management team and Anglepoint had limited visibility into software discovery and deployment. This lack of enterprise-level license management and the amount of ‘unknowns’ in terms of compliance risk, audit risk, and overall license management created a high level of risk in all areas.

As the SAP publisher onboarding process ramped up, it was apparent that normal employee turnover within various stakeholder groups had caused a loss of important institutional knowledge due to a lack of documentation and record keeping. In many cases, the lack of data sharing was due to procurement not knowing where the information was stored or not understanding the type of data required to be provided, rather than protocol preventing the information from being shared.

SAP licenses had been disparately managed with no single function managing the SAP systems across the organization, which meant no formal adherence to licensing rules and requirements. Because of this, thousands of users had access to licenses that were not required for their roles. This, in turn, led to potential compliance concerns.

Anglepoint needed to take a proactive approach to change the cultural mindset and drive a collaboration.

The Solution

Anglepoint needed to gain trust at all stakeholder levels and began working from a ‘ground-up’ perspective, rather than simply a ‘top-down’ approach.

Anglepoint began by creating relationships with new product management stakeholders from the security group and other business areas, allowing for a complete view into license consumption. These relationships spanned much more than just SAP, and included all publishers that Anglepoint was contracted to manage, as well as additional ad hoc software publishers. With more than a dozen procurement agents who viewed Anglepoint as a trusted advisor, in combination with strong buy-in from middle management, Anglepoint was able to slowly gain the buy-in required to have the client’s procurement team send its SAP entitlement and contract data as it was clear they were working on the client’s behalf.

Anglepoint gained trust from individual procurement agents who are the sole authority (in combination with their management) to make decisions on behalf of the organization regarding software contracts. There was depth and breadth to the types of stakeholders involved and the role they played in SAP portfolio management.

Anglepoint ensured that the SAP security and basis teams worked thoroughly through all potential optimization activities. They gained clarity around the products in use, who the products were owned by, and how much was deployed. Through a questioning process across the departments, opportunities arose in user classification, clearly defining SAP engine entitlement, determining SAP deployment, and then working through correctly assessing the usage of self-declared products. Anglepoint identified a non-standard SAP named user license type that had hundreds of thousands of users assigned. They also supported and led the strategy behind a reclassification to assign those users the proper license type tied to their role. This reclassification moved the hundreds of thousands down to only several thousand users deployed across all license types and systems.

RESULTS

Complete enterprise-wide entitlement position created for the first time in 2023. Anglepoint received more than 2.5k documents and files that contained contracts, amendments, and appendices, something that just a year prior would have been impossible. Anglepoint completed its enterprise-wide SAP Effective License Position that included the full scope of SAP data and entities. There is now a centralized view of an enterprise-wide entitlement position, rather than data being housed disparately in different systems and groups. This knowledge will provide the client with additional buying power, leverage, and risk mitigation.

Ongoing optimization. Anglepoint identified potential optimization that equates to over $11.4M. The client is eager to move forward with provisioning licenses to where they are needed. Anglepoint is moving forward with optimization and risk mitigation in collaboration with the client. Anglepoint’s efforts have ensured that this data is now available and delivering these insights.

 SAP audit retracted. As a result of Anglepoint’s contributions, an SAP audit notification letter which had 186 products in scope was narrowed down to only 11 license types, which after significant back and forth, ended up being a mutually beneficial exercise between the client and SAP. The SAP audit went away with zero findings or risk.

 Users properly classified. The trend continues to move in the right direction. In December 2022 user counts were above 35k. In October 2023 those licensable counts were 11k. Additionally, out of 13 licensable named user types that the organization owns, 8 of them are now not in use due to optimization activities that Anglepoint recommended, which will lead the organization to additional cost savings.

A path forward for additional optimization. Due to the collaborative relationship between SAM, product management, senior leadership, and procurement, there is a plan in place to realize additional savings. Combining data outputs, self-declared reports, and people with proper systems access with the right amount of senior-level sponsorship will allow the client to realize even greater maturity as it seeks to optimize its software estate.

 

It was apparent that normal employee turnover within various stakeholder groups had caused a loss of important institutional knowledge due to a lack of documentation and record keeping.

Effective Management Of Your SAP Estate

SAP licensing is complex. The disconnect between what license managers purchase and what SAP administrators deploy can expose your company to compliance risks. Thankfully, we found an easier way to help you understand and optimize your SAP estate.