Freescale Semiconductor: Centralizing your global licenses with FlexNet Manager

In today’s global workforce the process of managing company assets can be challenging. Software licenses can be especially difficult to track across different offices in multiple countries. Further, regulations on software compliance from vendor companies and/or government entities have made software license compliancy even more pertinent for enterprises.

“The FlexNet Manager solution has given us an automated process in which we can track license usage more accurately and maintain control over our EDA purchasing decisions.”

Dan Griffith, EDA Business Relations and Asset Management Manager, Freescale Semiconductors

Freescale Semiconductor, Inc. one of the world’s largest semiconductor companies, was facing the challenge of a growing global workforce with more than 24,000 employees. The company focuses on the design and manufacturing of embedded semiconductors and has more than 5,500 semiconductor patent families. Freescale uses costly electronic design automation (EDA) software to develop and create semiconductor chips. EDA software, can make a critical difference in whether or not a chip design fails or succeeds, making it one of the most important and valuable assets for semiconductor companies around the world.

Dealing with Software Portfolio Management in a Global Organization

With a majority of its global workforce dedicated to the research, development and manufacturing of a variety of semiconductor chips and software, Freescale’s EDA software portfolio constitutes a significant portion of its operating expenses, as with many other semiconductor manufacturing and design companies.

As a global corporation, the company needed a way to maintain control of all of its software assets in real-time to help manage the cost of chip development and help control spending on licenses, while still meeting software compliance standards. Its task was to find a tool that would allow it to centrally manage the separate licenses of up to 60 vendor products for the more than 5000 users at multiple sites in more than 30 countries worldwide.

“Without a central tool to help us track software usage data and historical reporting we would have difficulty in properly forecasting future software needs, and we wouldn’t know if we were garnering a return on investment from our software spend,” said Dan Griffith, manager, EDA Business Relations and Asset Management for Freescale Semiconductor. “That lack of knowledge can be a real problem in the semiconductor industry because the investments we make in our software infrastructure for EDA have a major impact on revenues down the road.”

Ensuring Software License Management Success

Before deploying a solution, Freescale had determined the requirements for its new license management system. The right tool would be able to collect data and manage software licenses worldwide through a single reporting structure, provide historical reporting and enable real-time updates. This would help to ensure every person who needed a software license had access to software when they needed it.

The company looked at several vendors, and found that Flexera Software’s product offered the solution that best addressed its needs. FlexNet Manager Suite from Flexera Software automates many routine license tracking and management tasks, saving the company time and eliminating the need for most manual tracking. In addition, Freescale could leverage FlexNet Manager Suite to set automated alerts so that managers could be instantly notified of potential licensing problems before they affected end users. Freescale could therefore quickly determine and resolve license availability issues as soon as they occurred. Flexera Software’s product provided Freescale with a global, centralized license reporting system, in depth historical data at their finger tips and real-time responsiveness to changing business dynamics.

Benefiting from Simplified Software License Management and Automated

For Freescale’s software vendors, an automated process meant that Freescale could easily prove its compliance with vendor contracts at any time. Moreover, by being able to assess how its software was being used in real-time, Freescale could better utilize the software licenses by reducing software licenses that were unused and increasing licenses where usage peaked, all with minimal compliance risk.

“The FlexNet Manager solution has given us an automated process in which we can track license usage more accurately and maintain central control over our EDA purchasing decisions. Armed with the real-time trend analysis and usage reports that these tools provide, I can provide my executive team with the exact data and usage information they need to make important and strategic business decisions on software spending. This is a critical aspect of how Freescale manages its investment in all aspects of where, how and when we drive innovation in our semiconductor business,” said Griffith.

FlexNet Manager Suite provided an effective means for Freescale to centralize its software license management and accurately forecast future software use to help the company make purchasing decisions that ultimately could save the company a significant amount of money. Not only did Freescale’s software license utilization better map to its needs, enabling for a better return on investment in its EDA spending in particular, but the company has also realized significant value in the reduction of soft costs, such as: reduced IT staff time spent finding, updating and managing licenses; increased productivity of knowledge workers that no longer ran into situations where the software they needed was not available because of license issues; and a far better method for internally billing and accounting for expensive EDA licenses.

About Flexera Software

Flexera Software is the leading provider of strategic solutions for Application Usage Management; solutions delivering continuous compliance, optimized usage and maximized value to application producers and their customers. Flexera Software is trusted by more than 80,000 customers that depend on our comprehensive solutions — from installation and licensing, entitlement and compliance management to application readiness and software license optimization — to strategically manage application usage and achieve breakthrough results realized only through the systems-level approach we provide. For more information, please go to: www.flexerasoftware.com.