It happens all too often - the assumption that a 'standard' licensing metric carries its 'standard' definition - only to find out (generally through an audit) that no, thats not the case.
A classic example - the FTE metric. Simple right? Full Time Equivalent, standard 38 hours per week, calculated across the hours worked for the period by the organisation. Well as it turns out from some recent examples, perhaps not.
Consider firstly, what constitutes the organisation? Does it extend to other entities in your company structure, ie. affiliates, joint ventures, perhaps franchisees? How that is interpreted could have a massive impact to the size of your FTE pool that needs to be measured. And if theres an automatic inclusion clause in the contract then as soon as an acquisition occurs you're liable even though they'll probably neither be intending to use the system or be operationally integrated for some time (remember that little innocuous checkbox in your Microsoft Enterprise Agreement?).
And then what actually comprises 'hours worked'?
Now surely thats straight-forward? Well as it turns out - No.
It might just be that your vendor considers it to be all hours that are recorded in your system - annual leave, sick leave, even maternity and long-service leave. Or how about time spent volunteering, ie. time not even associated with your business - yes, that can be included too, to the extent that we have seen external influences captured under the definition as well, such as records related to CentreLink payments or involvement with the Defence Forces.
So don't just assume that basic metric is what you expect it to be. Go through the contract definitions - and if its not there make sure it gets added, and as always it needs to be clear, complete, and unambiguous. If unsure, check some scenarios with your vendor and if its warranted have those included in the documentation as well.
It can save you a lot of angst at a later time