Software License Optimization: Your Key to Cost-Effective Growth


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The cost of software assets is on a constant rise, as reflected in multiple reports by Gartner® and other firms. Studies also show that the top 20 software vendors are gradually eliminating the perpetual licensing model. As a consequence, the price of certain software assets along with their operational expenses will keep skyrocketing.

Under such circumstances, prioritizing software license optimization has become a key factor in ensuring you utilize what you purchase to the fullest.

What is software license optimization?

An important segment of your IT asset management efforts is constituted by software license optimization. With this process, you can put your every license to full use and minimize wastage—thereby ensuring that your organization doesn’t have any bad licensing investment.

While you cannot control the price of software assets as well as service and operational charges, you can definitely control your deployment or usage, and that’s where the role of smart license management lies.

Notably, there are different types of licensing models, such as node-locked, network, perpetual, dongle-based, cloud (subscription)-based, and more. With OpenLM, our smart license monitoring solution, you can track and manage all these types of software licenses conveniently.

Software License Optimization 101: OpenLM Story in Brief
Why do organizations need to optimize licenses?How OpenLM makes a difference
  • Rising software costs
  • License wastage
  • Limited visibility
  • Inability to track compliance
  • Unauthorized license access
  • Offering complete visibility
  • Minimizing wastage on average and in real-time
  • Allowing compliance self-check
  • Providing data-driven insights for confident negotiation
  • Eliminating chances of unathorized access and security threats

What are the current financial challenges in managing software assets?

With the increased preference for the cloud licensing model, software vendors are making licensing terms more complex, and maintaining them has become tedious. Now, it is not only the responsibility of the IT managers; the procurement departments are getting equally involved as it is directly impacting the ROI. Here are the major concerns when it comes to IT expenses.

Subscription costs > annual maintenance of perpetual licenses

Although apparently, many subscriptions are quite cheaper than a perpetual license including maintenance, the annual subscription renewal often becomes three times more expensive than the maintenance fee of perpetual licenses.

Rising charges for integration

Top enterprise software vendors often already have integration solutions such as Oracle or SAP embedded. But this may not be the case with your software. Under such a scenario, you have to leverage an integration platform like iPaaS. However, Gartner cautions that ‘by YE24, integration costs associated with iPaaS subscriptions and hidden fees will increase overall subscription costs by at least 20%.’

The penalty for failing compliance

Now, it has become obvious that software vendors are pushing their customers for compliance audits, inadvertently forcing them to switch to their cloud offerings. Notably, the penalty most software providers charge for non-compliance is quite high, and they visibly impact their customers’ business operations.

The concerning case of vendor lock-in

A vendor lock-in happens when you cannot switch to a better service for unfavorable contract provisions with the current vendor. Software providers such as Adobe have been often accused of using predatory licensing terms such as high cancellation charges, which force the customers to continue with the subscription despite their dissatisfaction.

How can software license optimization help eliminate bad expenses?

By opting for OpenLM-enabled software license optimization, getting 15-20% ROI is quite common from optimizing every license. There are multiple case studies where customers have got even more.

OpenLM Case Studies: Smart SLM Delivering Measurable ROI

Customers consistently achieve significant cost savings and return on investment (ROI) with OpenLM. Here are some examples:


A global leader in automotive acoustics and thermal management, slashed their licensing costs by 28% with OpenLM's software license optimization solutions.

Baker Hughes

A leading energy company, recovered $1.7 million in just 30 days by leveraging OpenLM's smart Software License Management (SLM).

Array Architects

A specialist architectural firm, achieved annual savings of $30,000 within the first two months of using OpenLM.

DePuy Synthes

A giant in medical devices, saved over €10,000 in just one year with OpenLM's license management solutions.

Here’s a look at how software license optimization with OpenLM can ease your licensing worries.

Minimized wastage

OpenLM’s smart license optimization includes tracking unused and underutilized licenses. OpenLM reporting includes a specific license utilization report, where you can track the exact number of licenses your team requires. 

The above image is a sample license utilization report by OpenLM which reflects the usage pattern of a set of FLEXPLUS network licenses for 3.5 months. While the total number of licenses is 50, the graph shows that 20 licenses are enough as per the usage—indicated in the Quality of Service (QoS) line.

There is another feature named license harvesting which helps you reduce license wastage in real time. It is a common habit among engineers and other users to keep applications open while they are on a break or doing some other task. In the OpenLM architecture, you can define such open but inactive licenses as idle after a certain threshold time—and once they become idle, you can use the license harvesting feature to reclaim them and make them available for other users. 

Data-driven confidence for negotiation

Like the report shown above, software license optimization with OpenLM means you get all the crucial reports related to your license inventory, allocation and usage—having complete visibility into your license environment. As a result, it becomes easier to negotiate with tricky licensing terms or vendor demands for additional charges.

Compliance self-check

While software vendors are pushing you for license audits, why not be prepared for it? OpenLM tracks licensing terms of all available licensing models and provides non-compliant alerts whenever there are incidents such as overuse, unauthorized access, and more. As a result, you can save yourself from paying huge non-compliance penalties from surprise external audits.

Zero security threats

By optimizing your software licenses, you can ensure that your software ecosystem doesn’t have any unknown applications or licenses, which automatically minimizes the chance of any malware or other security threats.

Notably, the benefits of software license optimization are limitless, with cost-savings being the top priority across organizations. However, with the real-time innovations in licensing models, it is wise to opt for a solution which keeps up with the changing business requirements. We at OpenLM make monthly enhancements in OpenLM SLM and OpenLM Broker so that it can deliver maximum value to our present and future customers.

Want to check our cost-saving SLM solution for yourself? Register for our no-obligation 30-day trial.

Also, join our upcoming webinars to learn more about software license optimization—its benefits and best practices.

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