Gartner recently put out their annual report: The Software Vendors That Are Auditing Now and What to Do About It. Based on survey data from their IT Financial, Procurement and Asset Management Summits, the research firm found software vendor audits have, once again, gone up. The percentage of respondents who said they had been audited in the last 12 months rose from 61% to 65% in 2011. Also interesting was the top five vendors doing the auditing: IBM, Adobe, Microsoft, Oracle and SAP (which is a new entrant to this list).
Gartner suggests that organizations look more closely at Software Asset Management, and start taking these threats seriously, as changes are increasing that you will, at some point, face an audit by one or all of your vendors. Many respondents also noted that they vendor had to have lengthy discussions with those being audited to explain licensing rules and clarify why they were not in compliance – this tells us one thing – if the customers don’t understand it, they need to be less confusing! You shouldn’t need an expert or an in-house person to explain the licensing to you, but unfortunately you do in order to stay compliant!