How to Get Started with Non-PVU Reporting

How to Get Started with Non-PVU Reporting

If your company uses IBM products, PVU reporting is something you’re probably familiar with. But it’s easy to forget that there are licensed products outside of PVU that require proper managing and reporting, too.

Reporting non-PVU products is just as important as reporting standard PVU products during a software audit. But reporting them correctly presents a unique set of challenges because they can vary in licensing type, range of deployment, and collection methods. That can make it difficult to track them, and to provide proper documentation.

Non-PVU reporting can be a timely undertaking, and sometimes it’s difficult to know where to start. That’s why we’ve outlined a few simple steps you can take to make sure your next software audit goes smoothly.

Be informed and prepared.  As with regular PVU reporting, it’s important to understand your Passport Agreement, the product ELA, and any negotiated special licensing terms.  Non-PVU products cover a variety of licensing types, from the classic Authorized, Floating, or Concurrent User, to other types like a license measurement based off the square footage of your facility. Make sure you understand the details—some applications are more complex than others.

Partner with product experts within your organization. The next challenge is the logistics of data gathering. Reporting on non-PVU products typically means working with multiple administrators or engineers across different silos within the organization—and that means partnering with the business application owners. Their knowledge about management and the architecture of products will be key in your data collection efforts.

Next, you need to consider the different methods of data collection. Keep in mind that each product family is delivered to its user base in a way that makes sense to the product, not always for utilization reporting. This can make data gathering a timely process, and it will differ from product to product. In many cases this will be a manual effort—however, some products provide scripts and/or can be used with third-party products to assist in data collection.

Get organized. Be sure to document your journey and the steps taken to collect data. Then identify opportunities to create a scriptable and repeatable process. After that, you can collect your data and validate your findings with your Passport Agreement.

This can sound simple, but the initial data collection might just scratch the surface of the information you need. Getting all the data will require a continued partnership with the application owners and experts—they’re your front line for monitoring and managing the license position.

The evolution of an organization to expand or divest can complicate the reporting process as well. Monitor your metrics, and know that it’s crucial to consider multiple sites and licensing acquired from mergers/acquisitions or divestitures. And make sure you keep any documentation developed with IBM about any software licensing transfers. Finally, implement and review any new license keys and counts that have been applied and documented with IBM.

At CleanSlate, we have a deep understanding of non-PVU reporting and can help make sure your business doesn’t have any surprises during your next software audit. If you’d like to learn more about all the ways we can help your business, contact us today.

Five signs it’s time to reevaluate your SAM strategy.

Five signs it’s time to reevaluate your SAM strategy.

Having the right software asset management (SAM) strategy in place for your business can save you time, money, and lots of headaches—especially if you run into an unexpected software audit. But many companies have an outdated SAM strategy—or no SAM strategy at all—which is a risk that can be easily avoided if you take the right steps.

To help companies make smart decisions about reevaluating their SAM strategy, we’ve put together a quick list of five key signs that it’s time to take another look at how you’re managing your software.

#1: Your internal audit process is out of date. If you haven’t looked at your internal audit process for at least a couple of years, it’s probably obsolete, which can lead to a host of issues. It makes evaluating your software footprint difficult, and that might mean you’re overpaying for software you’re not using. Or it could mean you’re underpaying, which could lead to a costly audit. But if your internal audit process is up to speed, you can avoid these issues. (If you’re using IBM software, don’t forget they’ve recently upgraded ILMT)

#2: You’re going through a merger, acquisition, or divestiture. If your business is changing through a merger, acquisition, or divestiture, you need everyone on the same page—so it’s a good time to review your objectives and SAM strategy. These scenarios can take years to complete, so if you get audited during that time you need to make sure your software usage is well documented to prevent any snags in the process.

#3: You’ve recently expanded internationally. International software licensing is a whole new ballgame. If you acquire a foreign company or foreign assets and need to purchase software that will be used outside of the U.S., you’ll need to make sure you’re following the rules and regulations set by the foreign government. For example, in many European countries, trade unions require strict review of each individual software license. You need to be prepared for both the added time and expense of these processes.

#4: You change your IT support outsourcing or go cloud-based. When transitioning from one IT company to another, you need to make sure your new IT partner is providing accurate, detailed reporting. And if you transition to a cloud-based infrastructure, you’re going to need to take another look at your software licenses to make sure they align with the requirements of using cloud.

#5: Your IT architecture has changed. If you’re going through a major hardware upgrade, you need to take another look at your SAM strategy because new hardware can alter how you utilize software. Faster, more powerful hardware can change your licensing footprint—and that might mean spending more for the cost of additional processing. If these costs are unexpected, they can really hurt your bottom line.

Taking a closer look at your SAM strategy is always a good idea. Even if you think your strategy is optimal, it’s worth the time to make sure. Our team can help—contact us today to find out how.