The proliferation of Cloud is only set to continue, with predictions suggesting that over 80% of IT budgets will to be committed to Cloud apps and solutions by mid-2018.
However with such a high proportion of costs assigned to Cloud, it is becoming increasingly important that organizations are fully in control and realizing all the benefits whilst avoiding any unexpected pain.
The Challenges of Cloud
We’re fully aware of the numerous advantages of Cloud computing; from increased flexibility, agility and speed, to cost and operational efficiencies, the benefits are well documented. However there are also some significant accompanying challenges which need to be heeded.
The ease with which business units can now access SaaS (News - Alert), PaaS and IaaS can create visibility, awareness and control issues for IT departments. This gap between what IT Managers think they know about their IT estate and what is actually true, increases risk and cost.
This in turn creates new challenges from a licensing management perspective. Whilst concerns around compliance may not go away completely, the focus shifts to optimization and understanding what software is being used when, where, how, and by whom.
The particular challenges of managing Cloud license metrics necessitate an alternative approach, quite distinct from that traditionally applied to manage on-prem licensing models. Trying to piggy-back a Cloud license management solution on top of one specifically designed to manage an on-prem license challenge is just wrong. They are very different and, as such, need different solutions. It isn't a generic, on-size-fits-all scenario.
There are some key questions which will determine whether or not your Cloud strategy has a stormy outlook:
- Do you have a full understanding of software applications, platforms and infrastructure being delivered via the Cloud and used across your organization?
- Are you fully aware of the impact on governance and security?
- Do you know how much your organization is spending in the Cloud?
- Are you actually using what you’re paying for?
- Can you easily obtain subscription or usage data and access valuable management reports?
- Are you getting value for money from your Cloud investment?
- Can you successfully plan any future Cloud migration?
- Can you easily access all the information you need to ensure a successful transition?
Addressing the Challenges with Cloud Asset Management
Traditional software asset management (SAM) solutions focused on managing the lifecycle of software assets and associated on-prem licensing models. However, given the associated complexities of Cloud and managing cloud assets, it isn’t appropriate to simply extend that approach to accommodate Cloud.
The challenges of Cloud necessitate an alternative approach, quite distinct from traditional SAM. Welcome to the era of Cloud Asset Management, or CAM.
Benefits of Cloud Asset Management (CAM)
An effective CAM program should successfully address the above questions and deliver a host of benefits, including:
- Accurate discovery, inventory and consumption tracking of applications delivered in the Cloud.
- Overcome the limitations of Cloud portals, by providing access to a single centralized view with expanded access to data and improved analysis and reporting.
- Precise and granular insight into IaaS, PaaS and SaaS usage, across your organization, regardless of who is using or paying for them.
- Information from the Cloud can be combined with that for on-prem deployment, thereby providing a complete end-to-end view of your IT infrastructure.
- Accurate, complete view of investments and their usage across the whole IT estate enables better budgeting, forecasting and cost allocation.
- Access all the information needed to ensure a successful migration to the Cloud, safe in the knowledge that any subsequent investment will be properly managed to deliver maximum value at minimum cost.
Certero is a leader in the development, delivery and enablement of enterprise-level solutions which help customers maximize the value they get from their IT assets, driving transformation and organizational advantage. Core expertise in all elements of IT hardware & software asset management is complemented by world class, tailored services. Our mission is to provide the best solutions that work individually and holistically together, seamlessly and optimally on a single platform, which is unique to Certero.
About the Author: Laura Kelly is the Content Marketing Manager at Certero Software. Certero are a specialist vendor and supplier of Software Asset Management, Enterprise Mobile Management, PC Power Management, and Password Reset products & solutions, complemented by world class services, including SAM Services.
Edited by Mandi Nowitz