Companies must weigh the trade-off of purchasing and using genuine, fully licensed software versus using unlicensed software. This paper explores this trade-off and concludes that companies with unlicensed software do not have lower IT spend, but may incur far greater risk of system failure, data loss and employee discontent. In this paper, we explore the differences between mid-market companies (organizations with greater than 24 PCs and less than 500 PCs) that are committed to using genuine, fully licensed software to those that allow unlicensed software to play a role in their firm. We explore the differences in IT system failure rates, IT spending, perceived risks of counterfeit software, and fundamental company success metrics. To capture a strong cross representation of large markets, we included the United States, the United Kingdom, China, and Brazil, each equally represented here. The findings outlined below are consistent across the emerging and developed markets tested.
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