Are you ready for an Oracle audit? Must-read advice from Gartner

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Is Oracle focused on your level of software compliance? The simple answer is absolutely. Gartner customer surveys reveal that Oracle has stepped up its frequency of audits, with as many as 50% of respondents reporting they were audited within the last year.

IT asset managers will need to be at the top of their game. For example, did you know that Oracle’s virtualization and cloud polices are not included in Oracles’ license agreement? This kind of licensing issue could put your organization out of compliance without you even realizing it.

To ensure that your organization does not incur large, additional fees to correctly license your existing Oracle installations, software asset managers must keep ahead of all Oracle licensing rules and policies, as well as meet regularly with technical staff to identify risks.

Get the free Gartner report, How to Survive an Oracle Software Audit

 

Watch out for these audit triggers

Even experienced software asset managers can get tripped up. In a recent must-read research note, Gartner highlights several surprising scenarios that might cause Oracle to request an audit:

  • Use of older license metrics and product names — Oracle may use audits as a means of updating your licensing from older metrics, such as Concurrent Users, to new ones such as Named User Plus (NUP), Processor or Application User. It may also update your licenses to the most recent product names, which may not include the same functionality as the original entitlements
  • Changes to the technology environment, such as server refreshes, adding high-availability capability or using virtualization technologies — Use of and changes within virtualization technologies, such as VMware, can lead to very high unexpected costs
  • A new Oracle account executive is assigned to the customer — A change in the account team will sometimes spark an exploration into the customer's current licensing and potential noncompliance, especially at a time when no new business is planned or when plans are unclear

 

Here’s what you can do in 5 simple steps:

Gartner lays out several best practices for how you can prepare:

  1. Establish written procedures for handling any audit, and include any Oracle-specific procedures that must be followed
  2. Proactively prepare for Oracle audits by ensuring that their organization has all purchasing records and a complete inventory of purchased and installed software
  3. Set up regular meetings with IT procurement and technical personnel to discuss any changes in technology and any future Oracle purchases to determine how these will impact the tracking of Oracle licenses
  4. Ensure that technical personnel understand areas of common audit risk
  5. Refuse to settle audit results until the analysis is complete and they are certain the results accurately reflect their environment

 

The full report provides a thorough explanation of what you need to know, including how to check your audit rights and entitlement records, how you can manage and prove compliance and what to expect when resolving compliance issues. The report also addresses Oracle Configuration Manager, which collects and transmits customer configuration data to Oracle sometimes without notifying the client organization that it is occurring.

 

Click here to download the Gartner report, How to Survive an Oracle Software Audit

 

How HP helps your organization

The HP Asset Manager Software Asset Management (SAM) module can help your organization reduce software expenses and manage risk more effectively by automating the most common software management processes. Gain visibility into real license usage and negotiate from a position of knowledge in order to secure more cost-effective contracts. HP SAM calculates the compliance status based on inventory and software license contracts and entitlement data, along with cost for compliance and expenses by vendor. With HP SAM you are audit ready and need to purchase only those software licenses that are really needed.

 

Read more about HP Asset Manager Software Asset Management module.

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