In addition, I am confused like @PhilipDAth. Why would you like licenses to be in a form of tags? I think having licensing automated is best way. Especially, with new hardware, I don't want to be chasing devices in inventory to make sure they have a license so they can enroll or communicate with dashboard? I would need to know how this would be more useful before having a final opinion on the matter.
@jared_f @PhilipDAth Our customers purchase can either i) Purchase licenses from us for their whole estate ii) Purchase licenses from us for their individual sites
Tracking ii) is a bit of a pain to say the least with a co-termination date. We need to keep track of this externally. Saying we should only use i) is fair to say, but will not work for our model of operation.
I am assuming (and hope) all customers are on different SM accounts. If they are, it is pretty simple to say: renew, not renew and then delete the device from inventory if it has been retired. If it is under one account with different networks for each, I could see why you are having trouble.
@PeterJamesI have begged and begged for better licensing and tracking for 3 years. We have a huge problem with it. We bill back to sites, one corporation but all sites make their own money. I have to know what equipment a site has, how long they had it, when it expires, and which license are theirs. We have contractors that help, so things inputted into the dashboard are not tracked to a site, because their "contractor" goal it to get the site up and paid. I keep asking for Meraki to give us the ability to manage the licensing needed in a enterprise environment. So far no luck. I have another thread for a make a wish request that helps with this, doesn't fix it but helps. I have screenshots, of selecting the MX device and have it give you the complete list of what is at the site, MX, MS, MR, etc. Then have the same button in the corner to export it. Take a look at it and see if this would help your situation.
Having separate organisations for different sites to manage the license control of singular paying sites in my view is absurd. Yes, there are tools for carrying and managing it in this way (e.g API) but one single change at the organisation level would rely on an external system that you need to build. And you would lose so many features in the process (e.g. I love the guarantee that templates provide!).
I agree splitting sites in to separate organisation is a solution, but one that requires a heck of a lot of work when dealing at the enterprise level.
And I appreciate that this is only a problem for customers who wish to pay at the site level. I am not asking for the entire licensing structure to be overhauled, I am simply asking for a visually tag option on the licenses page so I can keep track, simply, without requiring to maintain an external document. It would be nice if the tag could disable a site until the license is paid, but I am not expecting or even asking for that. I just want a way I can run an export and associate 1 site with 1 license order and monitor the expiration date.
Yes, there are tools for carrying and managing it in this way (e.g API) but one single change at the organisation level would rely on an external system that you need to build. And you would lose so many features in the process (e.g. I love the guarantee that templates provide!).
I think (and it's not personal) very much people lack to see the advantages API's can give you..
Leveraging the API's complementary to the dashboard does not mean you lose features.
You gain insight in a way you need it because with the API's you can customize the data in a way you need it.
It would be nice if the tag could disable a site until the license is paid, but I am not expecting or even asking for that. I just want a way I can run an export and associate 1 site with 1 license order and monitor the expiration date.
You can still disable the network of the person that does not pay if your app tells you the customer has not paid and the license is expired.
Not sure when and how you guys activate a license but it seems to me the Meraki dashboard can only see if it's expired or not expired.
If your client has paid is something the accounting team is responsible for.
With API's you could create a dashboard giving you the information of the network + license + customer information if you've put it in there and connect it to your accounting software (if this allows it?).
This is (in my opinion) a way to go forward.
Connecting several software suites and cloud dashboard is not the same as in the 90's where you would have outdated excel sheets if you forget to import the most recent data...
With API's you can leverage live information from the dashboard and make sure you keep track of your networks the way you want it.
Building a custom integration that gathers data from several sources could be more efficient for your company instead of exporting data and importing it into sheets.
@Ben Thank you,
I agree with nearly everything you are saying. We do have in operating a very agile working environment with multiple teams supporting each other. And most systems in place are invisible so that people can just on with their role and not have to worry about a a certain under layer. A few teams are involved in the licensing, I am just trying to make it easier for some by having some visual tag in the interface.
The dig around loss of features was around having the setup of multiple organisations to monitor customer licenses on a 1-1 basis.
I think Meraki have done a great job around expanding the API and can see continual additions being made. But say we have 500 networks in one organisation running off 2-3 Wi-Fi templates, a simple change just needs to be carried out in 3-4 places. If these were 500 separate networks, we could use the API but if this API call did not exist we would need to do this 500 times or spend time creating / testing the API hook (if it existed). Take for example right now adding/removing a network alert which does this does not exist in the API.
We are already looking in to integrating the API more closely in-line with our internal systems and I agree / would like to create a new tailored solution to easily manage this side of things.
@PeterJames to being with I didnt understand what you were wanting but after having a good read (there were some long replies there) I understand and think the option of being able to tag a license in these situations would be helpful.
How Meraki would do this while still keeping things simple I have no idea. Good luck with get your wish granted.