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What to Expect at the Gartner (London) IT Financial, Procurement and Asset Management Summit

Alexa Bona, Research VP, IT Asset Management, Gartner

After nearly two decades of Gartner IT Financial, Procurement and Asset Management Summits in the US, Gartner have brought the format to EMEA.

The first EMEA Gartner IT Financial, Procurement & Asset Management Summit will be held in London at the end of the month.

I recently spoke with Alexa Bona, Research VP at Gartner, to ask what we can expect from the summit.

Q. What is your role at Gartner?

I am Vice President of Research and Agenda Manager for the IT Asset Management and Procurement group at Gartner.

I guide the research content for this group. For my personal research– as an analyst I cover trends in software licensing, pricing and maintenance, contracting for cloud services, and I assist clients who are negotiating with big software suppliers such as Microsoft, Oracle and SAP to help them understand the licensing today, how this may change in the future, and how to get the best deal.

Of course this involves not just an analysis of the market dynamics, and knowing what works in negotiations, but also good software asset management capabilities- so the research ranges from strategic to very tactical.

Q. I understand this is the first time this event is run in the UK

Yes, indeed, this is the first time we have run this event in the UK. The US event is into its 19th year and has been very popular. The main reason we have launched it in EMEA is because of client demand.

We also did a pre-event survey of 186 organizations in Europe to ensure that we were covering topics that resonated, and interest was certainly high.

The top 3 ‘hot topics’ from that survey were: IT cost optimization, Trends affecting ITAM, IT Procurement and IT finance, and ITAM Best Practices and Processes—and so we have multiple presentations on these at the London event.

Q. What sort of numbers are you expecting?

We are expecting several hundred senior leaders in IT, IT Asset and Financial management and IT procurement roles.

Q. What can attendees expect from this event?

The title of the Summit is ‘Optimize IT Cost Today, Empower New Technologies For Tomorrow’- So the program of the event focuses on:

  • Reducing long term IT costs,
  • Better managing Software Licenses,
  • Negotiating more effectively with key suppliers like IBM, Microsoft, Oracle, SAP, VMware and others, and managing the relationship more optimally.
  • Preparing for the impact of new IT trends (e.g. cloud, virtualization, consumerization, IT/OT convergence) and optimizing IT costs in the face of those trends

Attendees should come out with a better strategic view of how the market is moving, and how they need to adjust their operations as well as some very tactical advice on how to optimize costs that can be implemented in the days and weeks after the Summit.

Q. In terms of client requests, what are you seeing the most demand for in this field? 

In terms of volume of inquiry- due to the market dynamics in software, where the high switching costs and other factors mean that buyers have a lot less power than providers in negotiations after the initial spend- and the number of customers some of the big software vendors have- we of course get lots of inquiries related to negotiations with Microsoft, Oracle, SAP, IBM and others.

I would suggest that aside from the vendors themselves, Gartner probably sees more software deals from these vendors than any other organization, so we do get a unique view of the industry.

However I would also say that with the focus on cost optimization, and the continuing increase in vendor audit activity, we are also seeing an upsurge in inquiries related to IT and Software Asset Management.

So with that in mind this summit includes presentations exploring how you get started with ITAM, the key processes, the data required, the people issues and of course evaluation of the tool providers capabilities.

We will also share the results of a big survey we have just completed of IT Asset Managers in EMEA and the US to inform attendees on the state of ITAM – and of course we will have the results of the survey on ITAM Service Providers and Cloud Services that we are jointly working on with you!

The Gartner IT Financial, Procurement & Asset Management Summit is being held in central London on the 28th and 29th September. More details can be found here

About Martin Thompson

Martin is owner and founder of The ITAM Review, an online resource for worldwide ITAM professionals. The ITAM Review is best known for its weekly newsletter of all the latest industry updates, LISA training platform, Excellence Awards and conferences in UK, USA and Australia.

Martin is also the founder of ITAM Forum, a not-for-profit trade body for the ITAM industry created to raise the profile of the profession and bring an organisational certification to market. On a voluntary basis Martin is a contributor to ISO WG21 which develops the ITAM International Standard ISO/IEC 19770.

He is also the author of the book "Practical ITAM - The essential guide for IT Asset Managers", a book that describes how to get started and make a difference in the field of IT Asset Management. In addition, Martin developed the PITAM training course and certification.

Prior to founding the ITAM Review in 2008 Martin worked for Centennial Software (Ivanti), Silicon Graphics, CA Technologies and Computer 2000 (Tech Data).

When not working, Martin likes to Ski, Hike, Motorbike and spend time with his young family.

Connect with Martin on LinkedIn.

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