License Compliance Management

License Compliance Management is a critical framework for organizations to navigate the complexities of licensing management software. With the advent of sophisticated technologies and an increasing reliance on digital tools, managing software licenses has become a fundamental aspect of corporate governance and risk management.

software licensing management tool

What is License Compliance?

License compliance refers to making sure that the program installed across an organization's computers and devices adheres to the terms of the licenses purchased from vendors. This includes not installing more copies of a system than licenses owned or using software for longer than the agreed duration.

For example, if a company purchases 100 licenses for Microsoft Office, they need to make sure Office is installed on no more than 100 machines. Using it on 101 machines would put them out of compliance. Or if a 50-user license for Adobe Creative Cloud is purchased for 1 year term, the company cannot use the tool for 13 months without purchasing a renewal.

The Risks of Non-Compliance

The risks of license non-compliance are substantial, including:

Legal and Financial Penalties

  • Software vendors can sue non-compliant companies for breach of contract, resulting in hefty legal fees often reaching six or seven figures
  • Audits may uncover under-licensing issues resulting in large true-up costs sometimes amounting to millions in license purchases
  • Fines levied can exceed $150,000 per software title instance found to be out of compliance

Reputational Damage

  • Media coverage detailing software lawsuits and fines can cause major damage to an organization's brand reputation
  • Shareholders, board members, and industry analysts may lose confidence in company governance controls

Disabled Software Usage

  • Program vendors can technically blacklist and disable products confirmed to be out of compliance
  • Loss of access to mission-critical software applications can grind productivity and operations to a halt
  • Workarounds like reinstalling operating systems can be extremely costly and time-intensive

Given the wide-ranging financial, legal, and reputational liabilities at stake, license compliance should be a top priority for IT software asset managers and general counsels. Quarterly self-audits, tracking process improvements, and automated solutions can help reduce risk.

The scale of potential damages makes investing in software like Total Network Inventory worthwhile for safeguarding compliance. Schedule a personalized demo today to learn more!

software license management software

The Importance of License Tracking Software

Manually tracking software licenses across an entire enterprise with hundreds of applications and thousands of devices is extremely difficult and prone to failure. Error-ridden spreadsheets and unreliable human memory inevitably lead to non-compliant installs or unnecessary license purchases.

This is why automated software license tracking tools are critical for managing continual compliance. Solutions like Total Network Inventory (software license tracker) provide sophisticated capabilities impossible through manual approaches:

  • Discover all systems installed on every device.

Scans the entire network to build a definitive list of all software installed on servers, desktops, and laptops - ensuring complete visibility.

  • Maintain central database with licenses and installs.

Stores licenses owned, install locations, approvals and denials in an SQL database - providing a system of record for reconciliation.

  • Compare installs against licenses purchased.

Matches actual installs on computers against purchased licenses to identify compliance gaps - enabling accurate true-up decisions.

  • Notify on computers exceeding limits.

Alerts immediately when devices exceed purchased license thresholds - automating oversight across thousands of endpoints.

  • Provide audit-ready reports.

Produces comprehensive reports detailing installs vs licenses owned for internal and external audits - reducing the manual effort to instantly pass audits.

By eliminating risky and inefficient manual approaches, automated software licensing tools like Total Network Inventory provide unparalleled visibility and control - making continual compliance achievable at last.

Run audits on a schedule! Software license management in Total Network Inventory includes the ability to schedule scanning tasks. Create your own custom schedule and perform daily, weekly or monthly license audits in full auto mode. By scheduling audits outside of regular working hours, you can ensure smooth performance with no unwanted network slowdowns or workflow interruptions.

How to achieve software license compliance

Here are the best practices for achieving continual program license compliance:

  • Assign central accountability: Appoint a dedicated software/license manager responsible for tracking compliance. Have them lead quarterly audits, license purchases, optimization efforts etc.
  • Track all software requests: Log every system request, purchase, and license agreement with detailed records on approvals, number of licenses, terms etc.
  • Automate with software: Use tools like Total Network Inventory (software license tracker) to automate the discovery of installs across the network to simplify audit reconciliations.
  • Conduct regular self-audits: Run quarterly reconciliations of all software installs vs licenses owned. Investigate discrepancies, uninstall unused tools, and purchase true-up licenses as needed.
  • Keep comprehensive records: Document all license keys, invoices, agreements, costs, etc in a central system, keeping records up-to-date after new purchases or retirement of software.
  • Remove unused programs: Uninstall applications that show little employee usage to optimize license spend. Reallocate freed-up licenses to needed software.
  • Purchase enough licenses: True-up licenses during renewals or new deployments based on peak historical install requirements. Build in capacity for growth.
  • Notify staff on changes: Inform users, help desks, and IT teams of new license allocations available during renewals so they appropriately approve new installs.
  • Train staff on processes: Educate management, personnel, and procurement on license compliance practices through seminars and training guides.

Following these software licensing best practices reduces compliance risk and helps sustain continual adherence to system agreements across the enterprise. Incorporating software licensing management tools into the IT infrastructure is a strategic decision that enhances operational efficiency and mitigates the risks associated with non-compliance.

Total Network Inventory for license compliance management

TNI is a comprehensive software license management software designed to address the challenges of license compliance. This comprehensive software license management tool is engineered to automate and simplify the complex process of tracking and managing licenses across an organization.

  • Software License Management:

TNI excels in detecting all Microsoft software licenses within a network, ensuring that every piece of the license is accounted for. It goes beyond mere detection, facilitating the maintenance of a centralized inventory that logs every license purchased along with the software installed on each computer. This level of detail is crucial for businesses to remain aware of their compliance status, with alerts issued whenever license limits are breached on any device.

  • Agentless Software Inventory:

One of TNI's key features is its ability to conduct thorough scans across an entire network without the need for pre-installed agents on individual devices. It achieves this by securely connecting to network endpoints using administrator credentials, thus discovering detailed hardware and program inventory data. This not only minimizes setup time but also reduces the workload on IT staff, allowing for a more efficient inventory process.

  • Centralized Storage:

TNI provides a centralized SQL database for storing all relevant license information, including license keys, purchase dates, invoices, and associated costs. This database offers unparalleled visibility into all licenses owned by an organization, making it easy to compare these with the software installs discovered during scans. Additionally, it records the locations and users of each install, further enhancing the management capabilities.

  • Scheduled Compliance Audit:

With TNI, compliance audits can be scheduled to run automatically during off-hours. This feature is essential for minimizing disruptions to daily operations while ensuring that software install changes are identified promptly. Immediate alerts for newly non-compliant computers help administrators stay ahead of potential compliance issues.

  • Comprehensive Change Logs:

TNI's capability to record every software install, uninstall, and update across the network is invaluable for tracking usage dynamics. This information is critical for making informed decisions about licensing purchases and adjustments. Moreover, TNI notifies administrators of any unapproved or blacklisted installations, helping to maintain system policy compliance.

  • License Compliance Reports:

The tool's reporting feature is designed to build custom reports that reconcile software installs against licenses owned. These reports can be printed, exported, emailed, and shared with key stakeholders, facilitating transparent communication about compliance status. Furthermore, TNI offers executive dashboards that highlight license risks, providing a high-level overview of potential issues.

By leveraging Total Network Inventory for automated tracking of software assets, IT administrators can save countless hours through streamlined audits and reduced risks of non-compliance fines.

Use our software for continual license compliance

Achieving continual license compliance has never been easier than with Total Network Inventory. As opposed to generic license management tool or manual tracking, TNI serves as an IT department's software licensing management of record with unparalleled visibility into license positions.

software license compliance software

Through automated discovery, centralized monitoring, and simplified reporting, Total Network Inventory makes license management a breeze. System licensing teams can track everything from purchase records to installs and remain audit-ready year-round.

Compliance confidence also leads to easier contract negotiations and true-up forecasting based on real-time usage data.

By choosing TNI for software license compliance software, organizations can navigate the complexities of licensing with confidence, ensuring compliance and optimizing their investments.

The risks of non-compliance make it license management software a must. See how Total Network Inventory fulfills that need with a free trial!


27 February 2024

Total Network Inventory 6.2: the beginning of big changes!

TNI has now the ability to work with SQL servers, which will make the program a full-fledged reliable multi-user product.

08 June 2023

TNI 6.1: New interface and functionalities for Data transfer mode

We have significantly redesigned the mechanism and interface of the "Data Transfer" window based on your feedback to the support team.