METRO AG was faced with the challenge of getting a complete view of all IT assets required throughout the group. In addition to the hardware and software inventory, this included user and license data. The goal was to gain valuable data through the implementation of a central solution for IT asset management (ITAM) in order to optimize their software use, assess risks and become more efficient.
As the first step, the USU Software Asset Management solution was used for Discovery. The solution obtained high-quality inventory data via reports as the basis for effective data management after connecting to various source systems. In parallel, the solution was introduced for License Management and its optimization modules were used for the most important software manufacturers.
Over 60 dashboard reports provide consolidated HW and SW data, which the USU solution uses to ensure compliance at all times, and also provide up-to-date balance sheet data to optimize the software licenses for SAP, Oracle, IBM and Office 365. The centralized solution minimizes manual effort and helps to significantly reduce software costs.
At a glance
> 60 METRO customized reports for HW and SW inventory, current SW compliance
> 30 METRO companies, full view of over 100,000 IT devices
"Thanks to the targeted and always trustworthy cooperation with our partners USU and Raynet, we were able to productively set up an overall ITAM solution that provides us with a full overview of valuable IT data across all METRO companies in over 30 countries at all times. This allows us to use our IT resources much more efficiently.”
Ulf Vollmer, Head of Compliance Control at METRO
A full overview of IT resources
Complete view of the decentralized IT infrastructure, risk assessment at any time, compliance for the most important software manufacturers, and cost-efficient software deployment across all METRO companies in more than 30 countries - these were the ambitious goals of the SAM managers of the wholesale group.
To achieve these milestones, a call for proposals was issued for the introduction of a central IT asset management solution. Through a comprehensive selection process, USU came out on top with the best overall offer and, together with inventory specialist Raynet, also impressed METRO during a proof-of-concept phase lasting several days.
Four inventories, one tool
In the first phase of the project, the task was to create transparency across all the IT assets. In addition to the hardware and software inventory, this also included user and license data. This data had previously been collected manually from a wide variety of systems and had to be validated in order to produce high-quality information. Country-specific security requirements made the task even more difficult. This initial project phase was led by USU's partner Raynet, which implemented the Discovery technology. As a result, more than 60 customized reports were created, which allowed access to all essential data - for example, the inventory quotas of each country or the entire Oracle inventory.
Through the integration of the USU solution’s License Management, additional source systems from major manufacturers were successively connected, for example, Microsoft, SAP and Oracle. This allowed the METRO team to make knowledgeable decisions about optimization opportunities. In several steps, this enabled the
Positive effects on compliance & IT security
Today, the METRO Group has a centralized overview of all relevant IT data. This means that valuable information is automatically available for all METRO companies in over 30 countries and for many internal decisions.
The internal effort for data management has been significantly reduced. For example, compliance reports about the top three software manufacturers can be generated automatically and used for the preparation and evaluation of audits. The consolidated data is also the basis for cost-effective IT software deployment since unused licenses can be tracked down and the METRO portfolio can be optimized.
In the next project phase, the existing inventory data has been enriched with end-of-life and daily updated vulnerability information. The added value of the aggregated data becomes visible in a "technology catalog": For example, expired Windows versions that no longer receive support can be identified. The USU solution enables METRO to perform a holistic risk assessment of all locations and countries.
The success of the project was guaranteed by active communication with the internal METRO departments involved, such as Finance, Legal, Governance, Purchasing and HR, and also by the trusting cooperation between the project partners. "The introduction of IT asset management at an international group is always challenging. That makes it all the more important to tread this path together and motivate each other," said Daniel Fink, USU Sales Manager, in praise of the successful collaboration.