How device manufacturers can innovate their business models and grow
Robin Duke-Woolley (RD-W) interviews Brent Pietrzak (BP), the senior vice president and general manager of the Supplier Division at Flexera Software.
RD-W: How does Flexera help companies build a digital leadership position?
BP: Manufacturers and original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) that stand out in the market with an innovative business model and approach put their customers front and center and rely on a software and services driven approach to continuously provide value and flexibility. We give them the data and processes they need to implement, run and analyse their monetisation models. We enable them to automate, and hence go to market faster and to make better decisions based on data and insights.
RD-W: Why should companies consider a central monetisation platform?
BP: They really need a holistic view on their digital business. Companies that run products in silos and use different technologies or homegrown solutions for critical business processes like licensing and entitlement management turn a blind eye on the overall health of their business and don’t have a 360-degree view of their customers. Plus, they might be losing money and wasting time on inefficient processes and duplication of efforts between different product lines.
RD-W: What is the core value of a monetisation platform?
BP: In the past, say 10 or 15 years ago, monetisation was all about licensing and IP protection. Today the core value is driving recurring revenue and increasing customer satisfaction. Delivering seamless processes for customers as they consume software, offering selfservices and providing transparency and insights is at the heart of every customer-centric organisation, which makes software monetisation a strategic value driver.
RDW: Why should companies rely on a standard system like yours rather than developing something themselves?
BP: There are three very obvious reasons. First, they want to use the time and experience of their teams to develop their core products and services. Second, they will likely underestimate the time and effort needed to build and maintain functions like licensing, entitlement management and software/firmware updates and third, no homegrown system will provide the business model flexibility that companies need and that customers require.
Implementing Flexera’s Software Monetization Platform – some practical examples
ThingWorx – PTC’s market-leading Industrial Innovation platform – delivers tools and technologies that empower businesses to rapidly develop and deploy powerful Internet of Things (IoT) applications and augmented reality (AR) experiences. It makes solution development simple, time-tomarket fast and solutions built on the platform more compelling. ThingWorx has been growing fast as PTC continuously adds more partners who choose its innovative platform to develop and connect their IoT solutions. In preparation for this growth, PTC needed a robust, flexible and scalable solution for monetisation and compliance management and chose Flexera.
PTC implemented Flexera’s Software Monetization platform, using FlexNet Operations as a central entitlement management back office and FlexNet Embedded as the flexible licensing technology integrated in ThingWorx. The Flexera Integration Framework was used to create seamless integration with PTC’s existing back-office workflows to manage customer entitlements. Flexera’s Monetization Platform supported all of PTC’s outlined needs right out of the box in a standard setup. And throughout the entire process – from strategic planning, to design and implementation and training – Flexera Global Consulting Services fully supported and aligned with the PTC team. The result of this collaboration was a first-pass success with zero business downtime.
Schneider Electric, a global specialist in energy management, selected the Flexera Monetization solution to reduce costs and increase flexibility – in turn delivering more value to customers.
In this rapidly changing market, Schneider Electric needed a software monetisation solution that would give the company flexibility to quickly adapt and take advantage of new business opportunities such as the Internet of Things by standardising software licensing, entitlement management and delivery onto a single, consolidated platform across its traditional and digital software business.
Siemens Building Technologies
Siemens Building Technologies Division, based in Zug, Switzerland, is the world leader in the market for safe and secure, energy-efficient and environment-friendly buildings and infrastructures. The company offerings for safety and security as well as building automation, heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) and energy management. Siemens Building Technologies searched for standardised licensing technology which would enable it to monetise all software and improve the licensing and order process as well as the customer experience. Itchose to partner with Flexera and implement its Software Monetization Platform. Siemens Building Technologies Divisions’ License Management System provides complete integration between Flexera’s FlexNet Operations back-office entitlement management system and their instances of enterprise resource planning (ERP) and their business intelligence (BI) system. The License Management System provides the following key benefits to Siemens Building Technologies Division:
• Assurance that all software is protected and monetised with standard licensing technology
• Improved and automated operating and ordering processes—previously they had to ship hardware dongles to customers, now they simply provide a license key which simplifies the ordering process and eliminates manual processes
• Ability to adopt new business and licensing models when selling software and services to customers
Empirix is a recognised leader in end-to-end network performance monitoring and analytics. Empirix solutions provide a holistic view of end-to-end user communications and behaviors across networks, emulating real world transactions to deliver functional/regression testing, performance testing and proactive monitoring.
Empirix improves customer loyalty through real-time, end-toend visibility of customer experience, service performance, network performance, device management, and location based services. As a software provider, Empirix works with telecoms service providers as well as companies in the financial, retail, healthcare and utilities industries. As network functions become virtualised, there is a demand for more flexible business models. Empirix saw the need to move from feature-based to usage-based monetisation models. With this came the need to understand exactly what customers were using and charging appropriately, while maintaining an excellent customer experience.
Flexera’s Software Monetization Platform enables Empirix to move to new business models and better understand its customers’ needs and usage of their products, leading to informed business decisions about monetisation, product packaging and end-of-life (EOL).