BSA obtained a complex picture of software management of the companies in the Győr-Moson-Sopron region when it visited the local companies between mid October and mid November. They have found that some of the companies are well-organized concerning software management while others still have to improve their skills. Most of the companies welcomed the visit of the BSA's experts. The experts have found that all of the companies have a designated person for IT issues and that the management is more or less aware of their liability concerning IT issues. In many cases staff has to sign an employee policy statement. On the other hand, in many other areas the situation is not so favourable, for example, the number and exactitude of software inventories are not as accurate as hardware tracking. Price and terms of software procurement are the most significant aspects in the purchasing decision of business users. The retailer's knowledge about software in general and of software licensing bears secondary importance. The actual control of employees never happens. Integrated software management is hardly in use at companies. The overall impression the experts gained is that companies set in motion a lawful business operation process, which takes the firms' long-term interest into account. Yet, it is still a long way for software asset management to become a comprehensive approach.
The next phase of BigvisIT Campaign starts on 19 November 2005 in Budapest and Pest County. BSA had sent and continues to send out thousands of letters addressed to small and medium- size companies. As the name of the campaign suggest, BSA's legal and technical advisers pay a visit to the Managing Director on an agreed date.
The main purposes of the visits are to obtain an overall idea of business software asset management practices in the region, to offer a helping hand in developing it and in locating illegal software. During the visit BSA's experts asks questions from the company directors related to software management and evaluate the answers together with the respondents. Experts on spot offer practical advice for the directors to ensure organisations better manage their software assets. Users of licensed software and users willing to use those can count on BSA's long-term professional support.
Nevertheless, if BSA finds serious and intentional malpractice, and the Managing Director is not willing to collaborate, the visit can have displeasing aftermath.
It needs to be added that in extreme cases BSA can initiate legal redress even involving the authorities to protect the intellectual proprietary rights of its member organisations. BSA's advice for the companies is to be aware of the legal and other risks they take by using illegal software and legalise their software assets.
The BigvisIT Campaign will go on until the end of 2006 and after visiting the Western regions, Budapest and Pest County BSA is going to visit the rest of Hungarian counties as well. A comprehensive study based on the experiences will be published among government officials, legal authorities and the media.