Considerations for Right-Sizing Engineering Software

You may be wondering how many licenses do I need? What are some of the considerations for right-sizing engineering software – Solidworks, Autodesk, NX or any other? How is the engineer productivity impacted by availability or lack of engineering licenses?

Current Inventory

The first step is knowing what you have. Take a look at the current inventory. What is the tool cost per seat? Are there restriction of use by Tool (WAN, LAN, Node-locked)? Who is responsible for what Licenses at your company?

# of Vendors and Renewal dates

How many vendors do you currently have – one or several? What are the renewal dates? Keeping track of this information is very important. Is there related Vendor PO information and do I have access to it?


Budgets are also important to look at and understand. You need to look at past spend as well as moving forward. What are the located budgets for projects? What are the expected future trends?

# of Engineers

The number of engineers can vary by locations. What are the current, previous and future staffing trends? What are the tools needed by engineer? If your company is growing or slowing may significantly impact the number of engineers and engineering licenses. Who are the engineers – electrical or mechanical and what tools do they need?

License Servers

What about the license servers – how many are there and where are these located? Who are the System Admins? You need to know the local contacts at each location. Are there Daemons on each (this could present for consolidation opportunities).

Usage by Tool / Feature name

Another opportunity is to look at usage by tool / feature name. Are there peak concurrent demand? Take a look at Checkout Patterns (Heatmap), average checkout time, above average checkouts, denials (True vs False), acceptable “probability of Denial.” In some teams, there is an issue of license hoarding – Identify who is hoarding. Consider looking at long checkout Alerts.

How is the engineer productivity impacted if they are waiting for licenses? Zero-use Report could be huge. Do you have Power Users of expensive WAN-Global licenses?

You can learn more about this in our White Paper “Guide to Right-Sizing Engineering Software”.

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