SLIM 360: The Only Tool You Need to Control Licensing Costs

Harness the Data You Need to Optimize Your Software Licensing

MetrixData 360 and SLIM 360, as software licensing management tools, provide the data you need to optimize your software licensing, reduce costs, and ensure compliance. With comprehensive and customized reporting, you can gain visibility into utilizing all your software assets and make informed decisions about the software you acquire.


The software industry is making incredible strides at all ends of the spectrum, bringing new challenges that organizations, large and small, must act on to remain competitive. One of the most critical areas executives must monitor license compliance. Ensuring your organization complies with thousands of software titles can become a nightmare. However, there’s finally a solution to this problem: SLIM 360.

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SLIM 360: Manage Licensing Costs

MetrixData 360 and SLIM 360 software tools offer potent insights into utilizing your assets, helping you make informed decisions about software acquisition and usage. A comprehensive dashboard and detailed reporting allow you to monitor usage, track compliance easily, and identify cost-reduction opportunities.

Reduce Your Software Costs

Reduce Your Software Costs

With our software procurement solution, you can quickly reduce your software costs by taking advantage of volume discounts and other cost-saving measures. Our software procurement solution makes it easy to stay on top of your software costs and ensures that you always get the best deals on software licenses.


Say Goodbye to Manual Software Tracking

Say Goodbye to Manual Software Tracking

Manually tracking software licenses and costs is a time-consuming process that can be difficult to keep up with. With our software procurement solution, you can easily keep track of your software licenses, costs, and contracts in one place. You’ll have access to real-time data on your software usage and can make informed decisions about your IT procurement strategy.

Simplify Your Procurement Process

Our software procurement solution simplifies the procurement process by automating the process of purchasing software licenses. Our intuitive interface makes tracking your software licenses and costs easy and ensures you have the proper licenses for your organization. With our software procurement solution, you can rest assured that you’re always up-to-date with your software licensing agreement and costs.

Optimize Your Software Licenses

Software licenses can be complicated and expensive. Mike Austin, an experienced director who knows the challenges of managing software licenses and costs, decided there was a need for a software licensing management tool that users needed to provide the data needed to optimize their software licensing agreement and reduce cost.


With Mike Austin’s help, you can ensure you get the most out of your licenses. Mike will review your current licenses, identify opportunities for savings, and help you get the best deals for your next software purchase.




It’s no news that there are many ways to save money on your software licensing. But how do you know which one will be best for you? Are they worth the investment? What if you invest, but it never pays off? These are all questions that software buyers may have in mind, and SLIM 360 aims to provide insight into the answers.


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Want to understand your software costs? The ability to document past decisions, current status, and future projections means that you’ll have a much more effective discussion with your team members to look at your options and make an informed decision. 


So, book a call here: 

5 Ways You Are Over-Spending on Microsoft 365 Licensing

Do you feel like you are likely giving Microsoft more money than you need to for your Office 365 or Microsoft 365 licenses? Feeling confused about how they bundle products and what features and functions that your users are actually using? Imagine if you had the data to find a way to reduce your Office 365 and Microsoft 365 subscriptions by 12% and 35%. How impactful would that be on your IT Budget?

If you have Office 365 or Microsoft 365 subscriptions, you are likely spending more than you need to be. Utilizing our proprietary SLIM 360 tool, we have analyzed over 2 million users of Office 365 and the results are that the average company is spending anywhere between 12% and 35% more than they need to.

Here are the top areas that we find companies are paying for subscriptions that they should not be:

Paying for Blocked Users in Office 365

When someone leaves your company, you need to stop them from accessing your Office 365 data. The process for this is to put them into blocked user status. This means their data (Exchange mailbox, SharePoint, OneDrive, etc.) is still there but that they can no longer get access to it. Users in blocked status still consume their Office 365 subscriptions, so when their replacement is hired you end up purchasing another license (unnecessarily). Most organizations believe they have a process to identify these blocked users, but we see anywhere between 3-6% of subscriptions that can be reclaimed when the right analysis is done.

Office 365 Service Accounts

There are a few technical reasons why Service Accounts (non-humans) require an Office 365 subscription to be assigned to them (e.g., you need Office Pro to be signed in at all times in order for an application to work on a server). However, the PowerShell scripts or on-boarding of Office 365 subscriptions is an imperfect process, and when an analysis is done of Service Accounts that have been assigned subscriptions, we are finding between 2-5% over-subscribed licenses.

Users with Multiple Subscriptions

As mentioned above the on-boarding process of Office 365 is far from perfect. Just think, this process often relies on Active Directory and most organizations know that this is not ideal. This means that employees often end up being tied to multiple subscriptions. The impact is between 1-2% of your subscriptions can be reclaimed when this is analyzed.

Group Mailboxes with Subscriptions

Group mailboxes should be free unless they are bigger than 50GB. It is very common for us to see E1 or E3 licenses assigned to them. These unnecessary licenses cost anywhere between 1% and 4% of your overall Office 365 costs.

Users with the Wrong Subscription Types

This category may be the hardest to identify. Each of the ones above if you like data you can find them by looking through and downloading several reports out of the Office 365 Tenant – though it isn’t very easy. Users with the wrong subscription type not so easy, however.

Most organizations believe all their users need E1s, E3s, or E5s. Some have optimized their task-based workers (those that do not have their own computer and instead used shared devices or kiosks). Our data suggests that the average organization is actually using less than 40% of the functionality they pay for. Think about it: an E5 has over 50 products included in it and the average organization is only using 20 of those. We know this is caused by how Microsoft bundles and prices their subscriptions. There are things that can be done to reduce your subscription costs through right-sizing that can save you between 5-20% of your Office 365 or Microsoft 365 subscription costs.

Bonus: Unused Visio and Project Subscriptions

If you wanted to look to see if users that were assigned a Project or Visio Online were using them, you would not find this data anywhere in your Office 365 Tenant. It’s no surprise to us. When we analyze this data, we find that anywhere between 30-50% of these subscriptions are not activated or have not been used in the last 90 days.

Adding Up the Savings in Your Office 365

Just think about how much all this waste could mean to your IT Budget if you had the ability to identify it and reclaim those licenses. If your Office 365 costs just $500,000 a year that is anywhere between $60,000 and $175,000 that you could get back. If you want to have a discussion about how you can take back control of your Microsoft spend, please click the link below and book a 30-minute call with one of our specialists.

Give Your Microsoft 365 Licensing a Health Check

Book a meeting with MetrixData 360 today and see how much you could be saving on your Microsoft 365.


Data Normalization and Software Asset Management

Software normalization and categorization sound like quite an intimidating process, the kind of thing you probably need a couple of bachelor’s degrees for. Since you’re never too old to stop learning, today we’re going to demystify some of the more intimidating elements of software normalization and categorization. At MetrixData 360, we are an independent software asset management consulting company specializing in data normalization, along with software contract negotiations, software audit defense, evaluation of license readiness for migration to the cloud, just to name a few of our many skills. If you want to learn more about what we do, you can check out our about us page. But for now, let’s get into the weeds of data normalization, what it is, how to do it, and how we can help.

Why Should You Care About Data Normalization?

Data normalization is an important process in software asset management that systematically cleans and identifies data, filtering out unneeded information and standardizing the data in a format that is easily readable. Some of the main benefits of data normalization include:

  • Speeding Up the Process of Data Collection: Imagine all the different formats your data could potentially be stored in. Reading your data accurately without a data normalization tool will require you to manually go in and input the data into a single platform. This could take weeks of work and leaves you open to human error.
  • Improves Visibility: Effective software asset management where you can ensure compliance and cost-effective measures begins with knowing what you have. If you are just beginning your software asset management journey, you can check out our article on how to get started.
  • Negotiation Advantage: Knowing exactly what you have and exactly what you need will give you an advantage in your next software negotiation with your vendor. Software vendors profit off of your uncertainty when it comes to the number of licenses; purchasing too many licenses means you are wasting money and purchasing too few means you are open to compliance risks which again means more money for the software vendors. Having a data normalization tool can level the playing field.
  • Discover Security Risks: Software asset management is often underappreciated for its uses in cybersecurity. However, data normalization involves painting an accurate picture of all the licenses that you have activated in your environment and this will give the cybersecurity team the ability to know what must be patched and updated. It is also important to note that cybercriminals will often use untracked and forgotten assets as an entry point into your software environment. Software asset management eliminates the risk of these forgotten legacy licenses.

What is Involved in the SAM Normalization Process?

Although complicated in practice, the concept of the process of gathering and normalizing software data is quite simple. During the normalization process, you have two goals in mind: collect deployment data and eliminating redundant data (such as instances where a license may be counted twice if it is found on two different tables) to ensure your table is referencing a finite number of applications. These two goals are achieved through matching software installation data to a central contact library comprised of recognized software, the process also adds things such as publisher, product, and version value to the discovered model. These discovery methods are used to connect installed software to entitlements related to that software model.

The process of data normalization can be quite simple or terribly complicated, depending on how you go about it. So here are a few tips to keep in mind when you’re attempting to normalize your data:

Don’t Try to Do It Manually

I can’t stress this enough. The data is too complicated and too time-consuming to do by yourself. The exception for this is if you are a small company, with only a few desktops to keep track of. The more devices you have, the pricklier things can get and the data you pull by endlessly counting is unlikely to even be accurate as you try to keep track of everything in your software environment.

Data Normalization in SCCM

SCCM is an excellent tool at your disposal as you wrestle your data under control. It is an excellent way to monitor Microsoft tools and can be integrated neatly with a third-party tool.

If you are using SCCM, it is important that you ensure your data is of good quality by making sure your SCCM data isn’t stuck in silos but is instead accessible to those who would find it useful, including HR, procurement, and security.

SCCM can easily become overwhelming since it can collect hundreds of thoughts of pieces of data. Don’t get discouraged, however, since the next step is to clean up this data into something you can use.

Upload Your SCCM Data into Your SAM Tool

This is where things get a little difficult if you do not have a SAM tool properly installed since it is a SAM tool that can normalize your data in a manner that is easy to read and use. With the data your SAM tool produces, you can start rooting out compliance issues, find cybersecurity threats, and start developing a plan to minimize software costs. Ensuring that your SAM tool can produce trustworthy data is always a challenge, which is why it is important when you are picking your SAM tool to do your research or else you may be forced to resort to installing a secondary SAM tool or even picking up the slack through manual effort. That is why at MetrixData 360, we have a wide variety of resources available to help you come to an informed decision regarding your next SAM tool.

So, you can check out some of our resources, including: Best Software Asset Management Tools of 2020 and 5 Factors to Consider when Buying a Software Asset Management Tool.

How MetrixData 360 Can Help Get Your Software Under Control

As you can imagine, normalizing your data can be a daunting challenge if you are forced to go through it alone with just a notepad and pencil. Going about the task manually means you’ll be counting until you go blind, and there’s an uncomfortable chance you’ll get something wrong. This is why you’ll need your own SAM team who can own the project and someone who comes to the table with the skills and tools you need to get the job done quickly and accurately. Which is why MetrixData 360 has prepared a state-of-the-art Data Normalization strategy with proven results. If you’d like to know more about what we do and how we do it, you can reach out and contact us by clicking the link below and we will get to you in under 24 hours.

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What is SCCM and How is it Used?

SCCM: what it is, what it does, and how it helps with your software asset management (SAM) solution

It is well known in the tech industry that Microsoft has created one of the most complicated software licensing schemes in the market; one only needs to take a look at Microsoft’s SQL Server licensing to see that much. Not only are their licenses hypercomplex, but they are also subject to change frequently. If you are a large organization, this means that a single change in licensing could affect thousands of products throughout your software environment. It can be a nightmare and a seemingly insurmountable task to manage this kind of complexity, which is why it is important to be aware of the tools that you have at your disposal to help you in this struggle, such as Microsoft’s very own SCCM.

At MetrixData 360, we are well versed with Microsoft’s products, including SCCM.

So, in this article, we will look at Microsoft’s SCCM; what it does, what it is good for, and how it can help you improve your software asset management solution within your company.

What is SCCM?

SCCM was originally published in 1992 under the name System Management Server (SMS); however, in 2007 it was renamed System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) and may also be called ConfigMgr. SCCM can be described as a Microsoft management tool, meant to provide users with the ability to manage a large number of Windows-based computers.

Administrators using SCCM are given the ability to manage deployment and the security of devices and applications over a large and intricate enterprise software environment. Many administrators also use SCCM as an extra layer of security with the ability to create automatic patching. However, SCCM comes with many other features including remote-based control, patch management, operating system deployment, and network protection, just to name a few of its many features.

A free trial of SCCM is available for a short time; however, a license is required after the free trial has expired.

SCCM uses a single infrastructure to do its job, placing virtual machines, mobile devices, and physical machines under the same umbrella, giving the administration team control over a wide variety of tools and resources, either on the cloud or on sites. It allows the administrative team to discover service, desktops, and mobile devices connected to the network through the Active Directory and manage those deployments and updates on a device or group basis.


SCCM is often confused with Microsoft System Centre Operations Manager, SCOM. However, while they serve similar roles, these Microsoft products are not identical, SCOM allows administrators to monitor the health and performance of their IT environment, performing tasks such as deploying and managing operations, services, and applications within a software environment.

Both SCCM and SCOM exist as part of a larger family of products better designed to assist admin to manage applications and services, however, SCCM helps to primarily maintain the infrastructure security and make sure everything is up to date while SCOM monitors the services and devices and then shares that information in regards to your requirements.

What Can SCCM be Used for?

SCCM has a wide variety of uses including the ability to manage updates, provide a layer of protection against outside sources, deploy software, and can even protect you against compliance issues.

Since it provides you with such a wide variety of data, you can use SCCM to organize your software environment. You can also configure automatic alerts and automatic tasks to ensure you are updated on the status of objects and to ensure tasks are completed on time.

Using SCCM for Software Asset Management

While most organizations only use SCCM as an IT tool, it can also provide a wealth of information for software asset management. This is because SCCM will store inventory data that can be used to track assets.

One simply needs to ensure that SCCM is freed up using a web-based multi-tenant asset management system which will allow SCCM to be used for tasks beyond the IT Department, such as HR procurement and security. SCCM can provide you with the ability to plan and proactively dig down deep into the data of your software environment in order to ensure compliance and lower the risk of receiving a Software Audit, which can prove a costly and unbudgeted expense in these troubling times.

Related: Getting ready for a software audit? You can prepare by checking out our Software Audit Defense Procedure

Of course, there are limitations to SCCM since it can only provide you with so much information in a raw format. Often companies will use SCCM during the beginning stages of their software asset management solution in order to gain a footing before eventually migrating to a specialized SAM solution.

Getting a Handle on Your Software Asset Management Strategy

Software asset management is a difficult task for any organization with an intricate software environment. It is important therefore to ensure that you have every available tool at your disposal to help you achieve this goal. Not many companies consider SCCM as a valuable tool in their efforts to reach compliance and optimization.

At MetrixData 360, we often use our client’s SCCM tool to assist in our efforts to gather our data, which, in turn, ensures our customer’s compliance, optimization, and software licensing confidence. If you would like more details about how MetrixData 360’s approach can save you big on your software expenses, you can check out our SAM COMPASS service page by clicking the link below.

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