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Updates to Autodesk Licencing – How to Reduce Costs?

Autodesk's pivot to a cloud subscription model would lead to increased licencing costs for the CAD community.
autodesk-licencing

From May 2020, Autodesk has officially made moves to fully transition into a cloud-subscription model for its software. Robert Green from cadalyst.com covers the implications very well, I recommend that you read it. In this article, we will focus more on the ways we can tackle the almost guaranteed increase in licencing costs.

Here is how you can reduce costs -

Option 1: Track Licence Usage

Do you really need those 10 AutoCAD licences taking up space in your licence servers when each team member only uses it for 30 minutes each day? Does your management team really need a Navisworks licence if they are going to view a project model only once every few months?

For small businesses, it may make sense to share named user accounts using generic names like [email protected], [email protected], and [email protected]

For larger organisations, such an approach might not be as feasible due to the need to associate generic named accounts with large numbers of individual users. In additon, some projects may require users to be identified by real names instead of generic ones. 

Option 2: Implement SSO (for large organisations)

For organisations with more than 50 users, single-sign on (SSO) could be implemented to dynamically manage user access. 

Autodesk provides very useful guidance for IT Professionals to implement SSO to facilitate administration of licences. SSO allows organisations to manage employee access to their on-premise and third-party SaaS applications using a single set credentials.

Businesses considering this option should reach out to their Autodesk reseller for an Enterprise Business Agreement.

Option 3: Outsource BIM

There are costs associated with implementing BIM for your project. By working with specialist BIM providers, you no longer need to spend resources in developing the software skills inhouse or paying for software licences.

Clients communicate their needs to BIM service providers, and workflows associated with BIM – such as modelling, clash detection, quantity take-offs and construction scheduling can be performed by trained professionals.

Option 4: Third-party tools

There are smaller players popping up in the market to challenge giants like Autodesk. One interesting option is BricsCAD which appears to have a rather competitive pricing structure. However, there are some critical questions you may have to ask when evaluating third-party software such as:
  • Is the software stable?
  • Do the features fulfil my modelling needs?
  • Does it provide integrations with other BIM software?
  • Are my clients using it?

Ending Thoughts

It is still early days into the licencing change and Autodesk may change its stance depending on the reaction of the CAD community as a whole. In the meantime, we would like to hear what your company is doing differently to cope with the recent changes in the comments below!

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