Clearing the path for steady growth.

Kärcher supports a growing company by centralizing global software license management with an Adobe ETLA.

Kärcher

Established

1935


Employees: 12,300
Winnenden, Germany
www.kaercher.com

Rabobank

Better understand and predict software budgets with consistent and known licensing fees

Objectives

Reduce administrative burden on license management team while centralizing global license management

Accommodate dynamic company growth with flexible licensing agreements

Create predictable budgets through term-based licensing

Results

Better understand and predict software budgets with consistent and known licensing fees

Keep up with any level of growth by procuring additional licenses with flexible licensing limits

Improves efficiency of international processes by keeping all stakeholders on the same software

Remotely assign licenses to employees anywhere in the world using the Admin Console


“With the Adobe ETLA, we can benefit from both a clear, predictable budget and a future-proof agreement that scales to our needs.”

 

Achim Höfel
IT Service Manager Global, Alfred Kärcher SE & Co. KG


Supporting strong growth for a global business

What do the colonnades on St. Peter’s Square in Rome, the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin, the Christ the Redeemer statue in Rio de Janeiro, and the Mount Rushmore National Memorial in South Dakota have in common? They have all been cleaned with equipment produced by German manufacturer Kärcher. A family-owned company based in Winnenden, Germany, Kärcher offers high-pressure cleaners in 67 countries for every type of cleaning job.

The company has been growing steadily for years. In 2017 alone, 500 new employees joined the global Kärcher family, which currently totals 12,300 members. Kärcher plans to continue expanding, but in such a dynamic period of growth, it becomes more difficult for stakeholders to keep track of which new hires need what tools.

The company wanted flexible purchase options to help facilitate improvements without breaking the budget. With a three-year Enterprise Term License Agreement (ETLA) for Adobe Acrobat Pro DC, Adobe’s trusted, reliable, and complete solutions for PDF-based document processes, Kärcher benefits from an adaptable deployment model that supports the company’s rapid growth. The company is already planning on extending its use of ETLAs to include other Adobe solutions.

Standardizing on global solutions for global processes

As a global company, Kärcher has many internal processes and projects that operate on an international level. To make processes as efficient as possible, all stakeholders should use the same technologies and solutions to prevent compatibility issues.

Over the past two years, Kärcher has made efforts to standardize its software environment and centralize license management. Most licenses are now purchased and distributed by the company’s global headquarters. While centralizing licenses allows Kärcher to plan procurement more efficiently and keep track of inventory more easily, working on such a large scale has also impacted planning.

No matter how carefully demand forecasts are created, it is difficult to accurately estimate the number of licenses needed for a rapidly growing company. But buying individual licenses every time an employee needed new software wasn’t an ideal solution either. The administrative effort involved in purchasing and managing individual licenses would have a major impact on both productivity and company growth.

Kärcher found the dependable and strong partner that it needed to accommodate its changing license procurement needs in Adobe.

Predictable budgets with a three-year ETLA

Adobe was one of Kärcher’s first worldwide IT partners. Adobe Acrobat Pro DC is integral to many processes at Kärcher. As a robust yet easy to use PDF editor, Acrobat has a long track record of reliability in helping employees create high-quality PDF files.

The security features in Acrobat are optimized for enterprise use. Users can protect documents with passwords or certificates. Digital IDs help identify senders, and a malware sandbox prevents harmful files from entering the corporate network. Acrobat also empowers Kärcher to adopt customized or company-wide policies to help ensure consistent use of security settings.

“From the creation of user guides and other documentation to advertising and marketing collateral, Adobe Acrobat Pro DC is an essential tool for us,” says Achim Höfel, IT Service Manager Global at Alfred Kärcher SE & Co. KG. Operating from the company’s headquarters, Höfel is in charge of global procurement and distribution of software licenses.

Working with an ETLA allows Kärcher to better understand and predict software budgets every year. As part of the agreement, Kärcher benefits from a flexible licensing limit. If the company experiences strong growth, it may exceed the number of licenses agreed upon in the ETLA in order to keep up with actual software needs.

Kärcher may also deploy its licenses anywhere in the world, without any geographical restrictions. Any additional licenses beyond the ETLA limits are invoiced when the agreement expires. As licenses are not tied to a user or workstation, Kärcher can adjust licensing to accommodate changing usage patterns, such as employees’ growing adoption of one or more mobile devices.


“While more and more software partners offer flexible licensing models, other companies handle additional licenses in a variety of ways, and those methods usually aren’t as lean and clean as
with Adobe.”

 

Achim Höfel
IT Service Manager Global, Alfred Kärcher SE & Co. KG


Assigning global licenses from headquarters

The Adobe ETLA is a perfect match for the way Kärcher manages software licenses. “With the Adobe ETLA, we can benefit from both a clear, predictable budget and a future-proof agreement that scales to our needs. Its global reach provides us with the flexibility we need as Kärcher continues to establish new subsidiaries in local markets,” says Höfel.

Höfel also appreciates Adobe’s easy invoicing process. “The Adobe ETLA is not the standard licensing approach in the market yet,” says Höfel. “While more and more software partners offer flexible licensing models, other companies handle additional licenses in a variety of ways, and those methods usually aren’t as lean and clean as with Adobe.”

The Adobe Admin Console, a powerful yet easy to use management tool, helps Kärcher centralize license management across the entire organization with a small team. Höfel can easily assign requested licenses remotely to anywhere in the world. Licensing managers in international subsidiaries are now freed from managing Acrobat licenses so that they can focus on more pressing local tasks.

By migrating from decentralized to centralized license management, Kärcher also benefited from strong customer support from Adobe. “There will always be minor issues when trying to get a deployment this complex off the ground,” says Höfel. “Adobe’s support has been responsive, friendly, and truly helpful. The level of service we’ve seen is second to none.”


“Adobe’s support has been responsive, friendly, and truly helpful. The level of service we’ve seen is second to none."

Achim Höfel
IT Service Manager Global, Alfred Kärcher SE & Co. KG


Expanding efficient license management to other apps

Adobe Acrobat Pro DC is the first Adobe solution that is covered by an ETLA. Apart from Acrobat, Kärcher uses many other Adobe apps, including Adobe Photoshop, Adobe InDesign, and Adobe Premiere Pro, for creative work. Inspired by the positive experiences the company has seen with the Adobe ETLA for Acrobat, Kärcher is looking into expanding its use of ETLAs to other Adobe products to support employees as the company grows.

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