For example, iQuate's iQAnalytics tool takes into account how current software was deployed, license details, discounts and other historical data to project future demand -- and software costs. It drills down into very granular details such as what applications are deployed in which J2EE app servers, database configuration option details and Veritas cluster configurations, so that IT can model the impact of changes on software costs, says iQuate CTO and founder Jason Keogh.
All that information, Adams says, can be used to drive a better deal when it's time to renegotiate. "Most companies don't go back and negotiate the terms as well as they should. Large organizations should be able to do that," she says.
Whether you want to move to a third-party maintenance provider or not, simply making it known that you're entertaining the idea can lead to savings. "The presence of these providers is already moderating the behavior of [ERP] vendors," Scavo says.
Color Spot's Robinson says he knows that SAP looks unfavorably on his decision to move off SAP maintenance. But the decision in no way reflects dissatisfaction with the software itself, he adds. "I know SAP sees Color Spot as a rogue player, [but] nothing could be further from the truth," he says. "We love SAP, we really do. But the traditional licensing model, for the future, does not make sense."
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