Software User Licenses

Simply stated, a software user license is a binding contract between you and a CMMS vendor that establishes guidelines for your use of the software. It provides you with access to the copy of the software that was purchased, but the CMMS vendor still owns the software itself.

The structure of licenses can vary from vendor to vendor, and can have a big impact on the total cost of your solution. When comparing maintenance management software solutions, it is important to get a true “apples to apples” comparison of licensing.

Understanding the difference between licensing options will allow you to make more informed decisions and better meet the needs of your organization. Most CMMS vendors offer just one or two types of licenses, most commonly named user licenses or concurrent user licenses.

Named User Licenses vs. Concurrent User Licenses

To make CMMS software licensing easier to understand, let’s think of licenses as seats at a table.

Imagine that you want to reserve a seat for each individual person who will be at your table. Even if a person’s seat is empty, it is kept available for that specific person only. That’s how named user licenses work. As the term implies, named user licenses are assigned to a single named software user and can only be used by that individual. If 20 people need access to the CMMS, you must purchase 20 named user licenses.

Now, let’s compare named user licensing to concurrent user licensing using our table analogy again.

Instead of reserving a spot for every person who needs to sit at the table, you only reserve 8 seats. You know that not everyone will come to the table at the same time, and some people will only be at the table for a few minutes here and there. That’s concurrent user licensing in a nutshell.

With concurrent user licensing, you only purchase enough licenses to accommodate the number of people who will be logged into the software at the same time. If 20 people need access to the CMMS, but not all at the same time, you may only need to purchase 8 licenses. As you can see, concurrent user licensing keeps your software costs low by saving you from paying for unnecessary “empty” seats.

Benefits of Concurrent User Licensing

FTMaintenance CMMS is sold using a concurrent user licensing structure, providing many benefits to customers:

  • Lower Cost – Only pay for what you need. A single concurrent user license often replaces 2 to 5 named user licenses.
  • Convenience – Since concurrent user licenses are not tied to individual users, little-to-no IT involvement is needed to grant access to additional users.
  • Scalability – Concurrent user licenses are better able to support an expanding or shrinking user base.


Vendors who sell named user licenses require that you purchase a software user license for every individual who may access the system. This sharply increases CMMS startup costs, especially for larger maintenance teams. In contrast, FTMaintenance concurrent user licensing allows you to purchase the software at a lower cost while still providing access to everyone who needs it.