Survey reveals software audit fears

Austin, TX – December 13, 2016 – Snow Software, the leading developer of Software Asset Management (SAM) solutions, today revealed that SAM and IT managersaround the world are most afraid of being audited by Microsoft,  Oracle, and SAP.


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Asked to identify the top three vendors they feared being audited by, 75 percent of respondents highlighted Microsoft, followed by 53 percent for Oracle and 33 percent for SAP.

The same survey found that in terms of audit activity, 68 percent of organizations had been engaged by Microsoft in the last 12 months and 36 percent by SAP. IBM took third spot, auditing 31 percent of organizations.

Matt Fisher, Vice President at Snow Software commented on the findings: “While we expected to see Microsoft reported as having the highest volume of audit activity, it is surprising to see them take the number one slot in terms of being feared by their customers. In our experience, Microsoft is actually one of the least aggressive and difficult software auditors. We typically hear far more horror stories from customers that have been audited by Oracle or Attachmate (now MicroFocus).”

“Our advice is that, if you have your software assets under control, there’s actually little to be afraid of during the audit process. A fear of audit suggests that organizations recognize a lack of control and up-to-date SAM intelligence.”

The top three reasons given for audit angst include the likelihood that the audit will cost money in true-up fees or fines (29%), having to explain unbudgeted costs to business management (19%) and the disruption caused to normal business operations (19%).

With many software vendors – including SAP, IBM, VMware and Citrix – deep into their fourth quarters and scrabbling for every last bit of revenue, it is perhaps not surprising that audit angst is particularly high at this time of year.

Fisher continues: “The year-end audit has long been a stalwart of Q4 revenue for many software vendors, whether performed as an outright audit or disguised as an incentive to upgrade to the latest versions and technologies. These situations can actually work to customers’ advantage if they are holding the right information about their current software use and plans for the coming year.”

Snow’s SAM experts recommend a simple series of proactive steps that end user organizations can take to strengthen their position before an audit review, preparation is key.

Defending an audit can be made all the easier by using the right technology. Deploying a Software Asset Management (SAM) solution will help ensure the software estate is optimized before responding to the audit request and avoid unbudgeted costs.

For more information on the actions you can take to prepare for and defend an audit from Microsoft, SAP, IBM, VMware and others, download Snow’s Santa Claus or Audit Clause: what does the festive season have in store for you? eBook here.

About Snow Software

Whether it’s through lack of control, lack of understanding or lack of compliance, Snow ( believes that most organizations today end up paying too high a price for their software.

Headquartered in Stockholm, Sweden, Snow Software is the largest dedicated developer of Software Asset Management solutions, designed to ensure that the $326 billion spent every year on enterprise software is money well spent – ensuring organizations have the appropriate licenses for the software they use – not too many, not too few.

With more local offices and regional support centers than any other vendor, over 6,000 organizations around the world rely on Snow Software’s on-premise and cloud-based SAM platforms to manage software licensing across more than 11 million devices, from mobile to desktop, data center to the cloud.

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