Don’t Let Your Guard Down! How to Ace Your Software Audit!
The Software Audit Face
Many people cringe when they hear a software audit is coming up soon. The sound of the word makes us feel like we need to put on our battle gear and prepare for war. The reality is an audit it is a necessary evil thing that most businesses need to do as they grow.
The best way to deal with a software audit is to prevent it from happening. The problem is that few companies know how to avoid the scramble that comes from tracking down licenses, agreements, and software assets across the organization.
The Necessity of Software Audits
Software audits are most often conducted by third-party companies or outside agencies. Because of the work involved, it can take a momentous amount of time and labor force away from your routine daily operations. A software audit examines a customer for license compliance and safeguards the company to make sure it maintains a set of industry standards, specifications, and legal terms. Software audits can be subject to lofty fines if there has been a breach of any variance.
How to Ace the Software Audit
Check out the five tips below on acing your audit from the experts at Milestone.
- Check your internal compliance
- Be a step ahead of the auditors by performing your own compliance check. Check and verify all the data and responses before sending it out to the auditors.
- Delegate Tasks
- Work as a team and list the responsibilities and subjects to each corresponding team member. Having team members involved is imperative to having a successful audit.
- Gather and gather some more
- Create a well-organized system.
- Create subfolders for categories to keep important and relevant information grouped together for easier access and understanding.
- Stay on top of internal changes
- Be proactive in documenting any changes that may occur (discontinued departments, troubleshooting etc.)
- Maintain open lines of communication.
- Make yourself accessible
- A key person should make themselves available for the audit preparation and audit itself.
- Reschedule meetings because auditors may need additional information throughout this stage. (such as documents, etc.)
Be prepared for an audit
An audit is not something companies enjoy. The best companies take steps to ensure they are staying compliant. Taking the time to have your “Aces in Places” will prepare you for smooth sailing on your audit. Companies with the right tools fare better than their competition.
You will get audited
17% of companies that face vendor audits have been audited three or more times in the same period. A report from KPMG stated that 52% of software vendors felt the loss in revenue from unlicensed software.
Audit Management Software
The assistance of an Audit Management Software like ServiceNow can help simplify the auditing process. An audit management software can:
- Run audits at any time with the chosen desired frequency.
- Create scheduled audits from across different departments. Gives detailed feedback and helps automate the process for an auditor.
- Audit management software can notify the auditors when an audit is due.
In ServiceNow’s SAM reporting dashboard, teams can view tasks, change requests, and manage the overall process in a unified dashboard. If you are on the audit team, you can see the history of the audit and track the progress. You can also view items not assigned to owners that are candidates for removal. Numbers shown on the dashboard are updated once a day or can be manually updated.
Here is an example of a requests and audits tab in ServiceNow
You can learn more about driving savings with a software management tool like ServiceNow in their latest eBook: 8 ways to drive cost savings using software asset management.
What if you decide to ignore the ramifications and penalties that could happen for noncompliance?
- Fines and Penalties
Penalties come in multiple forms: financial fines, limitations on activities, additional barriers to approval and even prison which consume hours of manual work and can incur costly legal fees.
- Damage to your reputation
Companies caught in violation of a software agreements can have their brand’s reputation suffer. Despite years of recommendations, companies still fail to implement the most basic audit and compliance efforts until a scandal explodes.
- Unenforceable Contracts
Changes to legislation, or incorrectly drafted contracts can result in breach of corporate contracts. As a result, a lengthy and expensive legal process may require litigation in the courts to correct.
Take the next step with Milestone and ServiceNow
When it comes to audit automation and optimizing cloud spend, ServiceNow is the only platform that gives you a single source of truth for your cloud environment. Milestone helps many of the top brands in the world solve their IT challenges and control runaway costs with IT staffing, customized managed services, and ServiceNow-enabled solutions that set companies up for success.
For more information, check out our latest cloud visibility webinars.
Please feel free to reach us at email@example.com to learn more.