Reduce Risk and Improve IT Procurement Decision-Making.
In most businesses, managing software use is a difficult task. IT and procurement are separate operations, so which is responsible for understanding software licensing policies, managing them, and ensuring compliance? Many customers say “both,” but unfortunately each department may be relying on the other to manage license usage and ensure compliance. Add several vendors, consultants, and hardware changes into the mix, and before long businesses may find themselves lacking active control over software license deployment and use. This ultimately results in exposure to operational and regulatory risk.
Oracle is helping companies with this task. Oracle License Management Services is a team of licensing experts that provides objective license assessments to Oracle customers and partners. By providing advice, education, and tools to manage licenses, Oracle License Management Services aims to ensure that customers and partners have license structures that meet their needs and optimize the use of their Oracle software assets.
Oracle License Management Services is a global organization that delivers various levels of service, all of which are available at no cost to customers. These offerings—Compliance Review Services, Advisory Services, and Managed Services—can each be tailored to meet specific requirements. Regardless of the level of engagement, these services are designed to be transparent and collaborative and involve both information sharing and knowledge transfer.
Compliance Review Services are structured license assessments that reconcile a current license position and provide recommendations for optimal license utilization. These services often form part of due diligence, particularly when a customer needs to understand past purchases in relation to current usage.
Advisory Services provide advice on specific scenarios, such as the impact on licensing of implementing new technologies or infrastructure. In such cases, a customer might call in the team to give a presentation on a specific topic related to Oracle licensing or ask for an education session on the licenses they already own.
Managed Services engagements enable Oracle License Management Services team members to consult with companies seeking to conduct their own license management operations.
The Truth About Licensing Penalties
“There are misconceptions in the marketplace about Oracle’s practice of license assessments. Some software audit organizations partner with trade associations to complete software reviews on their behalf and, in doing so, charge their customers fines and penalties for rights infringed,” notes Christina Crowley, Oracle vice president, License Management Services. Not so with Oracle, Crowley emphasizes. “Our charter is to enable our customers, through the delivery of expert advice and education, to manage their Oracle software compliance risk. We assist them in achieving awareness of Oracle licensing practices and policies and do not charge penalties. We do, however, expect our customers to pay for the licenses they are using and the associated benefits of the support they may have received.”
Reduced Risk, Improved Decision-Making
When a customer makes the effort to understand how it is using its software assets, it reduces its financial, operational, and legal risk exposure. In the U.S., for example, legislation requires that companies certify assets, including software. Oracle License Management Services enables customers to certify their Oracle assets with confidence and reduces the risks associated with a lack of software license management. With raised awareness of Oracle license management practices, customers and partners may also benefit financially as they implement best practices and controls, manage license capacity and usage, and ensure informed decision-making regarding future IT procurement.
Crowley explains, “When our customers or partners know and understand what Oracle licenses they have, they can make the best use of them. Armed with this information, they make better decisions.”