Where SAM should sit?
In an ideal world, SAM should be one part of a bigger Service Management picture, as laid out by ITIL.

ITIL describes all processes required in all areas of IT Service Management, largely working around a CMDB (configuration management database) which stores a record of every asset that an organisation owns and a history of every change that those assets have undergone.

As you can see already, SAM is a set of controls and processes that manage software asset data.  If software assets are recorded in a CMDB (as they ultimately should be) then the SAM processes are very much part of the Service Management structure.

If your organisation is embarking on the ITIL journey, then SAM should be part of your programme of works.

In addition, SAM and licence management have a direct relationship with change.  As changes take place to servers, whether it be deployment, retirement or a change in the server applications that are installed or made available, the change process should be notifying the SAM function of those changes.

The SAM function should then make a judgement as to whether new licences are required, or just to keep a record of it for a future action to take place.

SAMsource and ITIL
We have deliberately avoided the bigger picture in terms of our description of what SAM should be for organisations of all sizes.

SAMsource has been written for people that are about to or are already doing SAM as a practical guide to get on with the essentials.

If you are looking to implement SAM as part of a much bigger ITIL picture, then please seek advice from ITIL consultants that look at the whole picture rather than just the SAM piece.

We now move onto our Must read section....