Software asset management policy


Final | March 2010 | v1.0.2 | OFFICIAL - Public | Housing and Public WorksClick to print


The Financial and Performance Management Standard 2009 outlines the requirement for departments and statutory bodies to manage strategic and operational risks. As with all ICT resources, software must be managed to mitigate risks and control costs. This QGEA policy states the Queensland Government’s direction in regards to Software Asset Management (SAM) of all third-party software licences and associated electronic media purchased by Queensland Government agencies.


This policy applies to all Queensland Government departments (as defined by the Public Service Act 2008). Accountable officers (not already in scope of the Public Service Act 2008) and statutory bodies under the Financial and Performance Management Standard 2019 must have regard to this policy in the context of internal controls, financial information management systems and risk management. Please see the Applicability of the QGEA for further information.

The following are outside the scope of the current policy:

  • in-house developed software applications.

Policy statement

To ensure effective and ongoing management of software assets, including the tracking of media and licensing documentation, agencies must establish and implement:

  • policies and practices which promote and provide direction for responsible management of software assets
  • appropriate processes and frameworks to manage the use, procurement and compliance risks associated with software licensing.

Policy benefits

The implementation of consistent and centralised software asset management practices within agencies will facilitate improved control and management of ICT investments and reduce financial and legal risks associated with software across Government. The expected benefits of the Queensland Government managing the use of software licences and media include:

  • savings achieved through licences only being purchased when needed and unused licences being tracked, pooled and transferred as required
  • cost reductions through linkages from metering reports to ICT planning to ensure maintenance agreements will be continued only for software that is currently in use
  • diminished exposure to financial and legal risks
  • more efficient use of resources, with time not being wasted in attempting to locate media, supporting untested software or searching for licences
  • more accurate and precise budgeting will be possible, since maintenance renewal dates will be captured, upgrades will be accurately calculated and user base licence growth can be calculated.

Policy requirements

Policy requirement 1: Agencies must develop and implement a software asset management policy and associated procedures.

As with other ICT resources, software must be managed to mitigate risks and controls costs. To this end, agency management must provide a clear direction and commitment to software asset management by:

  • ensuring the development and implementation of an agency software asset management policy and procedures for the purchase, installation, maintenance and retirement of software and licences
  • addressing software asset management in ICT resource strategies and planning
  • identifying roles and assign appropriate resources for the management and maintenance of software licences and associated media
  • ensuring the annual review of compliance with agency software asset management policy and practices.

Policy requirement 2:Agencies must implement registers and processes to monitor, record and manage software licence use

The implementation of centralised software asset management will provide agencies with a consistent approach to identifying and managing licences and controlling associated costs and compliance risks. Agencies must:

  • implement software asset registers and processes to record and manage software asset use (including the storage of media and licence documentation)
  • deploy software auditing and metering tools to identify software usage
  • ensure that optimum use of licences is available through developing a licensing pool.

Policy requirement 3: The State of Queensland will be the owner of all software licences

The Queensland Government makes a considerable investment in business solutions and their continued maintenance. All future software licences must be procured under the name of ‘The State of Queensland acting through the (State Government Entity)’. This will support the ability of Government to transfer licences between various bodies to support machinery-of-Government changes. Agencies will still be required to manage these licences.


Implementation of all requirements must be completed in accordance with the Software Asset Management position paper.

Issue and review

Version: v1.0.2

This QGEA Policy is published within the QGEA which is administered by the Queensland Government Customer and Digital Group. It was developed by the Software Asset Management Program within the QGCIO and approved by the Queensland Chief Information Officer on 16 March 2010.

This QGEA Policy will be reviewed on an annual basis. The next review date is March 2011.

Last Reviewed: 16 March 2010