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Software Monetization: Entitlement Management for Efficient Operations

May 11, 2012

As independent software vendors grow and thrive, it is not uncommon for them to face many growing pains associated with the operational processes they have built around licensing. New product lines – whether built in-house or gained through acquisitions – come with new registration, fulfillment, support, and delivery processes and problems. Eventually, the complexity of the licensing systems within an ISVs portfolio will grow to the point where they’re overwhelmed, which will affect every department within the organization, from IT to sales. When this problem comes to the forefront, many ISVs turn to entitlement management solutions in order to centralize all operational tasks associated with licensing.

Implementation of a proven entitlement management solution enables software publishers to centralize all licensing-related tasks across the organization, manage all disparate licensing systems from a single tool, consolidate and even automate many time-consuming manual tasks, and provide a centralized repository of product usage and entitlement status tracking data.

A recent LicensingLive! blog post, 5 Ways That an Entitlement Management System Can Help Your Company Work Smarter, Not Harder,highlighted the problem with disparate licensing systems, which can limit effective communications within any organization because staff spends too much time focused on the licensing systems. As a result, staff is no longer focused on the core competencies that drive innovation and revenue.

Entitlement management systems can help alleviate the problem by streamlining the back office, effectively creating a cohesive licensing system. It can also help ISVs more effectively monetize their software via cost reduction. In the LicensingLive! blog post, SafeNet’s (News - Alert) Alex Lating shares five ways such a system can help an organization empower its employees to stop working harder and start working smarter.

Streamlining Back Office Processes

Without entitlement management in place, customer service may be handling more calls about the licensing of your product than calls about the product itself. The IT department will get bogged down with the process, sales will get frustrated with the registration steps and customers may be inclined to go to the competition. An entitlement management system can help set an organizational standard for maintaining a single back-office system that can handle the licensing needs of all products. By streamlining licensing processes and connections to back end ERP (enterprise resource planning) and CRM (customer resource management) systems, the efficiency gains will make a direct on the bottom line.

Improve Customer Insight

Disparate licensing systems limit visibility into buying patterns and customer activations. When this happens, the sales team misses out on opportunities to cross-sell and up-sell to current customers. The customer usage information in an entitlement management system provides clear insight into the customer’s preferences and behaviors so you can make better decisions moving forward to benefit your company and your customers.

Speedy Fulfillment

While the occasional mistake is understandable, customers won’t tolerate consistent errors that they perceive to be incompetence. Software entitlement systems help to increase the accuracy of customer orders, improve the speed of turnaround times and ease the registration process. This is especially important with multiple product lines. When you offer a system with an easy way to register all products, it improves customer satisfaction.

Make Core Competencies the Priority

Software licensing and other monetization features are needed for all types of software – from on-premises software, to embedded software and software delivered as a service. Software monetization is an important function that should be left to the experts. Rely on a third-party software monetization program so you can focus on your  core strengths, driving revenue and greater profits in the process.

Improve Customer Satisfaction

You know that if customer satisfaction is lacking, you’ll have a hard time driving revenue and will spend more time trying to fix problems than gaining new opportunities. With software entitlement systems, you can enable your sales team to customize packaging and pricing, providing all the tools necessary so they can win the big deals.

Edited by Rich Steeves
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