Software License Management: Best Practices for Universities

Universities are heavy consumers of licensed software such as AutoCAD, MATLAB, Ansys, and SOLIDWORKS. Engineering applications are prevalent in research labs, and some are even part of the school’s curriculum for science, math, and engineering students. Proper software license management is crucial, not just for cost savings and compliance, but also to foster innovation and research without legal hindrances.  

This diverse pool of end-users indicates varying levels of license usage within the institution. Therefore, a comprehensive software license tracking system should be a non-negotiable item in your procurement checklist. Here are the top five software license management best practices tailored for universities: 

Increase visibility with a comprehensive software license management tool

With hundreds of staff and thousands of students using multiple applications for different purposes, it can be quite a challenge to consolidate all license usage in an effective and efficient manner. This holds true even more for academic institutions that run a combination of license servers and different software licensing models

In addition, some users resort to license borrowing, which can be a blind spot when reviewing usage patterns. With the right solution and reliable insights, you can build upon your existing software license management (SLM) program and gain enhanced visibility on who is using which license, when, where, and how.  

Software license tracking becomes paramount, given how the number of licenses and the use of engineering software varies in each department. It also varies depending on who’s using them – it could be a student, a researcher, a full-time employee, or a part-time employee. A single source of truth with granular data will make your life easier as you identify your cost generators, cost centers, invoice reports, and allocation models. 

Integrate license usage for better software license optimization

Most universities have their own preferred ERP and BI systems. A proper software license management solution will allow you to seamlessly export the data to the application of your choice. This makes it easier for any user to generate the reports they need in the format most suited to their goals. 

Track and reduce software license costs

While this is one of the most apparent benefits of tracking your software license usage, it can be easy to underestimate the savings that one can generate from identifying unused modules, underutilized applications, and duplicate licenses. However, the real magic happens during the analysis and presentation of the data. Through canned, real-time and customized reports, universities can translate the optimization of their software license usage into dollar values. 

Ensure software license compliance

A complete software license management solution helps universities better manage licensed software by ensuring that the usage is compliant with their vendors’ software license agreements. The system will help institutions in keeping track of different types of software licenses and their expiration date. It will also enable configurations that allow administrators to prioritize certain user groups over another group. 

Improve processes and security

Through software license optimization, universities can also improve their internal processes and security. LicenseAnalyzer provides license usage view on a daily, monthly, or quarterly basis, making it easy to break down the data into different departments. That way, institutions can easily identify unused or rarely used licenses or features. They can use this data to introduce changes to the curriculum: maybe you’ll find that the students are heavily using one application when they should already be studying another software. 

Open iT for Universities

Open iT is a trusted partner of different organizations, including universities, to track, analyze, and optimize their software, cloud, and SaaS usage. The company provides a complete solution: aside from offering a comprehensive software license management tool, we offer reliable 24/5 customer support for our clients all across the globe and services backed by industry experts. We also have a special pricing package for universities. 

Contact us today to learn more! 

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