Leading structural engineering firm Arup says it has saved £1.3 million by ridding itself of unused software and streamlining software deployment.

After IT staffing costs the second biggest IT cost at Arup is software. On average software accounts for 40 percent of the company's total IT spend, with 70 percent of that spent on desktop software such as Adobe and Microsoft products.  

Led by Richard Barnes, global automation team lead at Arup, the IT team set out to see how efficient that spend was. The team agreed to reclaim all software that had not been used for more than 90 consecutive days.

“We were able to uninstall around £585,000 worth of software, that’s about 17,000 installations," said Barnes.  

Arup used IE's AppClarity, a license optimisation tool which uses Microsoft System Centre Configuration Manager and runs analytics from IE's database.

Additionally, said Barnes, using IE's Shopping system, Arup has saved £735,000 on software deployment costs over two years. This equates to 148,137 software installs processed, saving more than 37,000 man hours of IT time, which has instead been spent on core tasks.

Shopping is an enterprise app store which enables users to select and install their own software from IE within minutes of the original request.

"We’ve now got a very happy team of internal customers who find using the tool as easy as ordering from iTunes or Amazon,” said Barnes.

Earlier this year Arup outsourced the management of its data centre to Vtesse Cirrus facilities in Hertfordshire, and moved in 500 pieces of equipment out of its own West London headquarters as part of the deal. Arup needed to upgrade its existing data centre facilities but was facing significant refurbishment costs to overhaul its existing space.

Picture: space Shuttle Endevour in Arup designed building