When Should Licensing Be the Focus in the Software Lifecycle?
In today’s modern world, software can make or break an enterprise. It’s why so many business owners focus on software development, or using top-quality software from trusted developers, as there are many advantages to be gained from its use. For example, startup management can be much more challenging than it has to be without a proper platform for relevant software.
However, things can get confusing during the development process of software, especially for business owners that don’t have the necessary experience to get everything right the first time. Things get especially tricky when they fail to consider the ins and outs of software licensing for your business.
Why is software licensing so important in the development lifecycle?
The trouble comes from a failure to comply with software licensing policies, which can lead to your business being open to prosecution. Something as simple as using software on multiple computers when you only have the license to use it on a single machine is considered piracy. While software companies might not consider pursuing individuals that use pirated software as it’s a waste of time and money, many will not hesitate to act when businesses are involved.
The same thing goes for companies focused on software development. Without proper software license management, you could lose out on overall revenue due to a lack of licensing for the software you sell, alongside the software you use for development. In addition, it could lead to someone purchasing the software, reverse-engineering the code, and selling knockoff versions. If you haven’t gone through licensing compliance, you won’t be able to pursue these individuals.
When is licensing the focus during the software development cycle?
Licensing should be considered during the entirety of the software development cycle. It includes the eight licensing steps — planning, requirements, design, building, documenting, tests, deployment, and maintenance. The earlier, the better, as the license type determines the kind of software you make. For example, licensing allows you to authorize the software rather than sell it. It’s a crucial distinction, as it means you still own the rights to the software. It also allows you to build a different business model for your software, such as a subscription-based model.
There will be times when you’re better off revoking the license instead of pursuing legal action, which is why it’s best to build a license agreement that gives you the right to withdraw a license at any time. However, it can be complicated for new business owners, so getting help from third-party services can best offer effective software license management systems is best.
While many aspects come with business management and software development, licensing plays a pivotal role, no matter which part of the developmental life cycle. Whether during the planning phase or when you’re about to deploy the software, it’s vital to consider potential licensing issues, so you’re always ready to handle the responsibilities of software management.
Even if you don’t have plans to develop software, you still need to consider the ins and outs of licensing, as your business will undoubtedly use software to manage company endeavors.