You can’t make the right software purchase decisions, meet license compliance requirements, and keep an up-to-date software inventory without knowing how employees use different software solutions in your company.
As an IT manager, you also want to reduce expense overhead from unwanted software renewals and eliminate unnecessary programs. All that is only possible when you capture and analyze software usage tracking data.
Software usage tracking is the process of gathering, monitoring, and analyzing what software applications employees access and how frequently. Organizations typically collect this data from user activity records, application logs, and SSO or OAuth platforms.
Measuring how employees use software has multiple benefits. For example, tracking software usage enables you to unlock cost savings by telling you the exact number of licenses you need. You’ll also learn if employees are extensively using an application, which means that the tool is business-critical. Software usage monitoring also helps you comply with licensing agreements and flag the use of unauthorized software.
5 ways to monitor software usage at your business
No matter what industry you work in, increasing productivity is always top of mind. While this isn’t always an easy task, one way in which you can do so is by finding the right software tools that solve all of your pain points as they ensure you work smarter.
When monitoring software usage, the goal is to determine the quality of the current software product and see if any improvements can be made. As a manager, you’ll want to measure software use and see if you can increase ROI, identify areas of improvement, manage workloads across teams, as well as reduce overtime and cost.
One of the ways to ensure an increase in productivity is to track your company’s software usage.
1. Monitor software renewals
As companies keep adding new SaaS tools to their tech stack, it may not always be possible to stay on top of renewal deadlines. Missed renewals not only negatively impact employee productivity but also prevent you from accurately budgeting IT spending. Knowing upcoming renewals also helps you optimize allotted seat numbers and negotiate better contract terms with the software vendor.
Sometimes, you may even run into tools that are set up with an auto-renewal status, meaning you could be billed annually, and automatically, for a tool that you don’t need anymore or one that you simply forgot about. Your company may also experience that software you signed up for a free trial of is no longer free, and you’re now being billed without even knowing.
No matter which instance sounds the most familiar, when you keep track of upcoming renewals, you can better measure if that particular software tool is worth the money.
Did you know? One of the great things about using G2 Track is that it can monitor your software contract renewals and termination dates for you, so you don’t spend your budget renewing software that no longer makes sense for your company.
2. Verify if employees are using the software
Sure, this step in tracking software usage may seem obvious, but you’d be surprised by how many times this is forgotten about. With so many software options on the market, it’s easy to get distracted by the new and shiny application and then forget about the one you’ve been using for years.
When you make a note of metrics like how long someone has used a certain tool and when their last login was, you can better access if this application is necessary for your team, if you can find its features elsewhere, or if you can get rid of it altogether.
of desktop software tools are wasted or underutilized.
Tracking software usage is critical to strategic IT resource allocation.
For example, you may need to buy additional licenses when more people use a tool than the number of licenses you paid for. Similarly, you may need to find alternative solutions when teams don't use a tool as much.
Monitoring software usage patterns can also help you set up training sessions when employees face difficulty working with a newly onboarded tool.
3. Watch for new tools to be announced
There’s always something new in the pipeline, just waiting to be introduced to the adoring software users. And you never know when a new company is going to debut a new software solution that is everything you could ever want.
Maybe it has all of the features of a tool you’re already using, at half the price. Or maybe it combines the functionality of two software solutions you use, wrapped up in one shiny product.
Whatever the case may be, something better (and cheaper!) could be just around the corner. You don’t want to miss out on what could take the industry by storm because you’re late on an announcement.
4. Measure productivity
Next, take a look at your tech stack, also known as a software stack. Your tech stack is the combined software systems that are needed to complete your entire platform of tools so that no additional software is needed to support any of your applications.
When doing so, ask yourself some key questions:
Do your employees find these tools easy to use?
Are these applications accurate and reliable?
Do you get consistent results when using these tools?
Are these tools helping your company achieve your short and long-term goals?
How often does the application experience downtime where it’s unable to be used?
Depending on your answers, you may find some ways to evaluate your tech stack for the better so your teams can experience more success.
5. Test coverage
To help you measure your company’s software use, it’s in your best interest to make the most out of G2 Track.
This complete SaaS and contract management tool allows you to manage software spend, contracts, account usage, and compliance -- all in one place.
How much of your budget is being spent by department
When contracts are up for renewal
Which applications are being used and how often
This is just a glimpse into what G2 Track can do as you take a deep-dive into the software your company uses.
Utilize G2 Track for software usage monitoring
When you use G2 Track to measure how your company is using specific software tools, you’ll have a better idea of where you can improve, save money, and cut back. Not every tool you invest in is going to be a perfect fit, but with G2 Track, everything you need to measure whether or not you’re using the right software will be all in one place.
G2 Track integrates with SSO and OAuth platforms to help you with software usage monitoring and see whether employees are using assigned applications. This real-time software usage tracking data goes a long way in helping you during license reclamation or contract rightsizing activities.
Want to see G2 Track in action? Sign up for the free forever plan today!
Mara Calvello is a Content Marketing Manager at G2. She graduated with a Bachelor of Arts from Elmhurst College (now Elmhurst University). Mara's expertise lies within writing for HR, Design, SaaS Management, Social Media, and Technology categories. In her spare time, Mara is either at the gym, exploring the great outdoors with her rescue dog Zeke, enjoying Italian food, or right in the middle of a Harry Potter binge.
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