New research by the Campaign for Clear Licencing has found that far greater licensing transparency is required within the $250BN annual software maintenance market. The study, conducted by the non-profit promoting clear licensing and rights for software buyers, found that many organisations have limited knowledge on key agreements with their vendors, such as support volumes, support quality or the strategic value of software maintenance renewals.
The Campaign found significant ambiguity in the market, with vague and complex terminology dictating legal rights. This caused anxiety and doubt amongst survey respondents, with many unsure if they are even allowed to stop their contracts or pick up support at a later date.
Commenting on the report, Carl Davies, CEO and Managing Director of TmaxSoft UK said: “It is imperative that licences become more straightforward and easier to understand, which is why the work of the Campaign for Clear Licencing is so important. We operate in a market where users are so often confused and misled by unprofessional selling tactics, and uncompetitive or even unrealistic licensing terms. This needs to change.
Davies continued, “The best practice principles promoted by the Campaign is particularly useful in scrutinising contacts. Internal systems should be put in place that check for risks in changing or stopping support, ensure collaboration with legal professionals where necessary and encourage greater use of cost/ benefit analysis on all services.
“It is also the responsibility of vendors however to ensure that customers are properly informed on all important details, such as pricing and long-term agreements for maintenance support. This model is fairer for consumers, and ultimately better for vendors, as lock-in is increasingly a reputational issue and a red flag for prospective licensees.
“Gaining verification for our Licensing Model from the Campaign for Clear Licencing proved critical to our Go To Market strategy, not only here in the UK but globally. We support all forms of virtualisation and so customers’ only pay for what they use. Our product, Tibero has greatly benefited from the certification, and consequently built a reputation as a fairer and more transparent alternative to other major database vendors.”
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