Many clients have come to me frustrated over trying to decipher how the new Autodesk license changes will affect their business. On October 13th, I held a webinar to help clients understand the basics of the changes. In an effort to help clients determine the best strategy for them moving forward, I wanted to give enough information to get everyone thinking. In the coming weeks, I’ll be posting multiple articles on more advanced questions you may have from an IT and license management perspective.
Reasons For The Change
So where do we start? First off, let me define the transition that Autodesk is moving towards. In Autodesk’s words their goal is “to offer a solution that provides clients with the ability to adopt world class technology at a reasonable price”.
How It Can Benefit You
Let me define what this means in more detail. In the current age of technology, users and organizations want to be able to have flexibility in using their tools. Project by project, month by month, they want to be able to access – and pay for – only the toolset they need in any given period of time. They also want to be able to use the software before deciding whether or not it is the tool-of-choice for a long term investment. Let’s take a look back at how things were before.
If you wanted a license of AutoCAD, Inventor, or Navisworks, you had to spend $5-8k on the license, then ANOTHER $500-$1200 in yearly maintenance for that year, and all the following years. Think about your previous approval process where you would try to justify a tool, (FEA is a common example) for 1 or 2 projects. Unfortunately, you probably had difficulty justifying the cost because it was hard to “sell” the vision to management about how the license ‘might’ be used on hypothetical future projects 3, 4, and 5. Management was just concerned with the initial, up-front large cost. When measured against the known value of work (just Projects 1 and 2), the Return on Investment numbers were not so good. Fortunately, the new approach changes the equation.
Autodesk is simplifying the process by allowing you to access different toolsets at a much lower price point. IF you need Navisworks for one project, you can get that. If you need FEA for the project after that, you can get that.
Why This Is Critical For ShipBuilding
Shipbuilding is ALL project driven and accordingly flexibility is a must. The size and timeframe of the project will drive your software decisions.
As of right now, Autodesk gives you two options for purchasing licenses: Perpetual licenses (buy the license and pay yearly maintenance) or Desktop Subscription Licenses (rent the license for a specific term).
So which should you choose? The answer is that generally speaking, for short term projects you would of course rent via the Desktop Subscription model. For long term, you’re probably better off buying perpetual licenses due to the cost advantage over the long term.
However, EVERY client’s business is different. Even if you have a similar project, the way you utilize your resources is going to be different. So what can you do to figure out the best solution for your business?
Simple Answer: Ask Pierre Charles (CAN) or myself (Jason Rose – US) for help.
The reason I say that is because we’ve already worked through many different scenarios. We may give you a simple answer to the question, or we might come back with a complicated answer depending on the licenses you own and the licenses you’ll need in the future. Some scenarios we can investigate are as follows:
Here is an example I used in our webinar that investigated the short and long term cost analysis of Product Design Suite Premium.
In my example above, you’ll notice that if you wanted to break down your license usage to a micro level, there are many scenarios you need to consider. A real-life scenario would be IF you use a license for 2 quarters out of the year. My slide wasn’t meant to confuse you as you’re trying to understand each scenario. I just want to get across that there are any number of potential scenarios and if you have an idea of the projects that lie ahead, we can assist on a cost comparison to find the best option for your organization.
How Do The Changes Affect Clients Daily?
Please note that I would STRONGLY recommend evaluating this now, as the first major date is January 31st, 2016. The reason you’ll hear a sense of urgency from our team is that we want you to be educated BEFORE the changes take place. Autodesk’s plan is to move to a complete subscription solution, meaning that come next year, you can only purchase licenses via the Desktop Subscription, or rental model.
You will need to know what your best options are before the following two dates:
January 31st, 2016:
Last Opportunity to purchase Perpetual Licenses or Crossgrades of most Individual Solutions. An example of Individual Solutions are AutoCAD, Inventor, and Navisworks.
July 31st, 2016:
Last opportunity to purchase Perpetual Licenses or Crossgrades of most Suite Solutions. An example of Suite Solutions are Product Design Suite Premium/Ultimate or Building Design Suites.
For a complete list of solutions and their corresponding last purchase date, please see the published list here.
After reading today’s post, I hope you walk away with an idea of next steps for your organization. These changes are meant to provide clients with an easier and more cost effective way to access licenses. I do stress that you need to evaluate where your organization is today and develop a strategy moving forward. These changes are not forcing you to change how you’ve done business. But without evaluating where your organization stands and where they are going, it might. In my upcoming blog posts, I’ll include information regarding the administration and user experience of the new license management strategy. I know you have questions in the back of your mind about license management and upgrades, which I’ll be answering at that time.
For a complimentary review with SSI’s Autodesk product specialists, please contact:
|Jason Rose||Pierre-Charles Drapeau|
|Account Executive-USA||Account Executive-CAN|