New standard pleases BSA

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The recent formalisation of the ISO software asset management standard, ISO/IEC 19770-1, is a milestone in the development of best practice, says the Business Software Alliance (BSA).

The organisation says the publication of the standard, which took place earlier this month, represents the formal recognition of a business practice that is gaining momentum in the local IT landscape.

"As software becomes more and more integral to the operations of public and private sector organisations, the task of managing and optimising those software assets has become even more complex," says BSA chairman Stephan le Roux.

"With the publishing of this standard, organisations now have access to best practice in this field and can seek certification, confident in the knowledge that, once implemented, they will be on the road to full software compliance."

According to David Bicket, who co-authored the IT Infrastructure Library (ITIL) Guide to Software Asset Management and contributed to the ISO/IEC 19770-1 standard, the certification offers the usual benefits of software asset management, including risk management, cost control and competitive advantage. It also has the ability to demonstrate good corporate governance in this area, and a greatly reduced likelihood of software manufacturer audits, he says.

Bicket, senior manager at Deloitte in the UK and director of Investors in Software (IiS), told ITWeb recently that there were also talks taking place with software manufacturers.

Although ISO and ITIL are vendor-independent, it is in the interests of software manufacturers to ensure their customers comply with standards, he says.

Talks are focused on what software manufacturers are willing to commit to, with suggestions including waiving licence audits if customers are certified, no audits for a year, and discounts if certification is in place.

Le Roux says the BSA applauds those who brought the standard to fruition.

"It marks a milestone in the global development of software management best practice and will help organisations to ensure they are fully compliant and making the best use of their software assets," he adds.

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