Snow Software has found that the prospect of a Microsoft software audit puts most customers into a state of panic.
While most software audits spark terrors of sudden licensing costs and threats of fines and court action, those from Microsoft, SAP and Oracle are the worst.
Snow Software found that three quarters of those SAM and IT managers it quizzed saw Microsoft as the vendor audit to be feared the most. There were high levels (53 percent) for Oracle and SAP (33 percent).
Microsoft has been a heavy auditor and pounded on the doors of 68 percent of firms in the last year.
What creates the fear is not so much the resulting fines but also the fallout of having to explain to senior management just why those unplanned costs had occurred and the disruption it could cause to the business.
Matt Fisher, vice president of Snow Software said that while he expected to see Microsoft reported as having the highest volume of audit activity, it was surprising to see them take the number one slot in terms of being feared by their customers.
“In our experience, Microsoft is actually one of the least aggressive and difficult software auditors. We typically hear far more horror stories from customers that have been audited by Oracle or Attachmate (now Micro Focus),” he added.