August 21, 2018

Do you have $40,000 of SaaS Licenses hiding in plain sight?

You can’t discuss SaaS’ prevalence without bringing up Salesforce. The CRM giant surpassed $10 billion in revenue last fiscal year. It has 30,000 employees and counts 83% of the Fortune 500 as customers. It owns 20% of the crowded CRM market share and is on pace to do well over $12 billion in revenue next year.

CRM tools in particular lend themselves to being sneakily significant contributors to software overspend. Their fundamental purpose is to be a central hub to view and manage ongoing sales, service, operating and marketing activity. This means everyone from the CFO, to front line customer service reps or the VP of Sales live inside the system; managing, monitoring and maintaining customer success.

What Cleanshelf has found, however, is that the tool’s significance leads to a surprisingly costly decrease in license management and optimization vigilance.

By design, firing up new SaaS license is as easy as a quick email or call. Even departmental managers at the the smallest startups have Salesforce on speed dial, adding licenses or features on a whim as their teams or use cases grow. What companies end up missing though, are massive savings opportunities by optimizing where and how licenses are getting used.

Here’s a real world example.

The following figure offers a recent Salesforce utilization example of a Cleanshelf customer. This table is not abnormal and is generally representative of how Salesforce is being used across most major industries. The Sales team uses the CRM religiously, as shown by the nearly 99% utilization rate. But on the Global Services team, fewer than 70% of the team are actually using their assigned licenses. For a finance or technology leader, this reality suggests that a quick re-allocation or assignment effort can give Sales a license boost to handle its near term growth without making any new purchases. It would also right-size Global Services’ ownership, thereby reducing unnecessary spend. In this client’s case, reviewing utilization uncovered nearly $40,000 waste.

Whether due to lax off-boarding practices, add-ons being owned by departmental managers armed with a credit card, or overbuying to take advantage of volume discounts, the license imbalance issue is expensive, common, and really hard to discern.

Cleanshelf encourages clients to look to other departments for licenses before making new purchases. Unused or underused licenses are a great way to keep costs down while giving employees the tools they need. Of course, improving utilization comes down to actually seeing what is being used (or not used!) and where licenses live. Give us a call or email today and see how license optimization using our cross-departmental support can unlock instant savings.

About Cleanshelf

Cleanshelf is the leading SaaS spend optimization solution focused exclusively on tracking, controlling, and benchmarking subscription SaaS applications. Cleanshelf’s cloud technologies help companies save up to 30% on their SaaS spending by automatically identifying unused, underused, or unmanaged licenses and subscriptions.

Headquartered in San Francisco, CA, Cleanshelf serves dozens of clients, including Drawbridge, Revinate, Dynamic Signal, Qumulo, and Service Rocket.


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