Let’s face it, software looks radically different today compared to only a few years ago, primarily due to organizations increasingly adopting software-as-a-service (SaaS) tools over traditional, on-premise software.
In fact, according to Zylo’s 2020 Benchmark Report, SaaS spending grew by 14% from 2019 to 2020. And there’s no end in sight, with the investment firm Bessemer Venture Partners forecasting cloud-based software will account for 75% of all software by 2030.
While SaaS innovation helps employees work efficiently and effectively, the sharp rise in SaaS changes the game for Software Asset Management (SAM) leaders.
As proof of this point, Gartner, a leading technology research firm, recently included Zylo in its 2021 Market Guide for Software Asset Management Tools. We’re honored for the recognition, as it reinforces the evolution of SaaS within SAM, and the need for the right tools to help SAM leaders excel in their jobs.
Read on to learn key takeaways from Gartner’s report.
Gartner’s Perspective on Software Asset Management Tools
First things first, let’s define SAM.
Gartner defines software asset management tools as products that help optimize software and SaaS spend while supporting the automation of tasks required to maintain compliance with software license and SaaS subscription use rights. SAM tools provide in-depth analysis and management of software assets by decoding software license entitlements, automating the collection of software consumption data, establishing vendor-specific effective license positions (ELP), governing software assets, optimizing software value, and sharing information with other tools and stakeholders.
Put more simply, SAM tools help to simplify the complex world of software license and SaaS subscription management, so organizations can optimize budgets and drive savings.
The explosion of SaaS over the last decade — the average organization now employs an average of 651 apps — pushes the boundaries of traditonal SAM, making it difficult to determine which tools to use to support the management of not only your on-premise software, but SaaS, too.
It’s increasingly becoming clear to SAM leaders that a singular tool lacks the capabilities to manage the complexities of both on-premise software and SaaS. In fact, by 2026, Gartner predicts only 20% of organizations will use a single tool to support SAM across all of their environments.
Due to the rapid evolution of software in recent years, as well as a large number of SAM vendors, choosing the best tool for your organization can be tricky.
According to Gartner, best-in-class SAM tools should include the following critical capabilities:
- Examine your devices, infrastructure, and financial records to understand how the organization utilizes both on-premise software and SaaS.
- Integrate with vendor portals and vendor management systems in order to obtain complete software contract, purchase, and procurement records.
- Utilize native integrations or an application programming interface (API) to understand software and SaaS consumption.
- Normalize consumption and entitlement data (usage and licenses) to create an up-to-date and accurate system of record for all software.
- Ability to fine-tune the number, type, and cost of licenses needed and in use, so you can determine ways to cut SaaS spend and boost efficiencies.
- Enable SAM teams to allocate licenses, identify remediation actions for noncompliance and over-licensing, and automate workflows to improve process compliance across your organization. A centralized system of record makes it easier to manage vendors and software assets across their lifecycle.
The Future of Software Asset Management Tools
According to Gartner, interest in software asset management tools continues to rise, which is unsurprising when you consider how enterprise software spending is projected to increase by 13.2% in 2021. Another driver of SAM growth includes the functionality to streamline automation or reduce the amount of time required to manage complex on-premise licenses, according to Gartner.
And as SaaS continues to grow, the scope of SAM tools will continue to evolve to support the unique needs of SaaS, and organizations must consider how their SAM tool supports their larger tooling strategy.
Use Zylo’s Software Asset Management Tool to Manage, Optimize, and Reduce SaaS Expenses
With Zylo, you can seamlessly discover and categorize all usage for not just IT-managed software, but line-of-business-owned, and shadow IT in a centralized system of record.
Zylo for Software Asset Managers enables you to:
- Reduce costs via better data and clear insights.
- Quickly make high-impact, data-driven decisions.
- Streamline chargebacks between departments.
- Integrate SaaS data into SAM.
- Establish a master record of every SaaS application.
Ready to learn more? Reach out to schedule a personalized demo today!