4 Tips to Help Track Software Licenses At Your School
Higher education now relies on dozens of different software programs to teach their students. Especially with the focus on online learning to reduce in-person contact, schools now need to be aware of the software programs they use to support their students.
These programs can range from online learning platforms like Blackboard or Canvas, to specialized programs such as design software or scientific solutions.
Why You Must Track Software Licenses
Depending on where you get your funding from, one stipulation of that funding could come in the form of tracking how those funds are spent. Educational software licenses can also come with several regulations. If any of those companies find that you’re not in keeping with those regulations, they can revoke your right to use their software at any time.
Tips For Creating a Great Tracking Environment at Your School
The best way for you to ensure you’re keeping up with software license regulations is to create a tracking solution. By tracking your software licenses, you can make sure students and staff are adhering to software regulations and not using your programs inappropriately.
But you can’t just start tracking usage without a plan. Trying to track widespread usage of your programs will end in a headache and a bigger mess than when you started. Here are four steps to get you can take to start your tracking endeavors off right.
Identify Current Usage Status
Before you can set up a tracking solution and create any changes, you have to know how you’re currently using the software available to you. What measures have you already taken? What data have you collected from how your students currently interact with your software?
Create a report from what you have. Once you have that, identify weaknesses in your solution, so you know what areas of software license regulation you need to improve.
Set up a Monitoring Solution
Once you have a good idea of how your students are currently using your software, it’s time to set up a monitoring solution.
There are several options for doing this. You can set up notifications anytime someone logs onto the software, or anytime there is any suspicious activity with logins. Depending on how many users you have available on your licenses, this may prove difficult to manage without having someone dedicated to monitoring software license usage.
Most of what you’ll want to monitor is related to the regulations attached to your licenses. Go through your license agreements and identify what regulations you need to adhere to. That way, you’ll have a better idea of what you need to monitor.
Create Usage Reminders
Many software licenses work on a subscription model. Renewing those subscriptions might require you to submit an audit or other proof that you’re keeping the intended regulations.
One good way to help remind your students of the restrictions of using school software is to implement a pop-up notification anytime someone logs in to a specific program. Make them agree to specific terms, so your school won’t be held liable for any misuse.
Schedule out reminders of any actions you need to take to track software licenses.
Track License Costs
License costs may change depending on how many users, or what type of license you implement. Many software programs have enterprise options that include school usage. If there isn’t already a built-in educational option, you may have to contact software administrators to create a custom solution.
Incorporating cost tracking into your asset tracking solution is one way to simplify the entire process. Your software licenses are an intangible asset, as they help your school support your students and carry out your educational endeavors.
Tracking software licenses doesn't have to be difficult. By implementing these measures, you can simplify the process and ensure your students still get the support they need.