UK Financial Directors Lack Confidence in Software, Finds BSA Survey

Financial directors (FDs) in the UK have increased spending on software but feel poor management is restricting the positive impact it can have on their organisations, according to research by the Business Software Alliance (BSA). More than 250 UK FDs participated in the survey, which shows that only 7% say they are very confident that the software in their organisations is correctly deployed.

The research found that 85% of FDs are responsible for software licensing in their organisations, with almost all (98%) agreeing that software is important to the running of their business. However, just 6% feel they are getting the best out of their software investments, while almost two-thirds (65%) are not happy with the way it is being managed. In spite of this concern, the majority of the FDs surveyed (81%) say their software spend has increased in the past five years, making up 6%-10% of capital expenditure for 70% of organisations.

Although spending on software has increased, businesses are clearly feeling the pinch of the recession with 85% citing funding as a major barrier to managing their software assets more closely. More alarmingly, only 12% of FDs think that intellectual property (IP) is valued within their company, which might explain why almost 30% of those surveyed admitted that illegal software could be in use in their organisation.

Richard Anning, head of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales IT Faculty, said: “Good business software is a fundamental aspect of how businesses operate in the 21st century. Our advice to our members always is to keep up to date with software licensing, undertaking an annual audit of software held in the organisation if required. It is also important to ensure you are not compromised by changing circumstances, such as test, acceptance and live environments, and that your business continuity plans are covered.”


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