How to Manage your Salesforce Licenses- Part 1: The Different Licenses in Salesforce

There is a high chance that your organisation is spending more on Salesforce licensing than it needs to. With this blog series we want to give you an overview of the different Salesforce licenses, challenges and tips.

Blog series - August 2022: Learn how to keep your Salesforce spend under control and get some useful tips and insights about the different licenses in Salesforce in Part 1 of the blog series. 

The Different Licenses in Salesforce

It can have multiple causes, that your organisation is spending more on Salesforce licensing than it needs to. This can have multiple causes, such as decentralised purchasing, user changes with more than one profile, licenses assigned to users that have left the organisation, additional storage charges, etc..

So, keeping up with the appropriate information enables you to control the Salesforce spend. When an order for Salesforce is activated, a license request is created. The license request includes definitions that build out your Organization ID (the Salesforce Organization ID is the unique identifier for your Salesforce identity and includes all your data and applications). Each Organization ID is different, and each user has different requirements. These definitions consist of settings that indicate which licenses, permissions, and profiles a company receives. These basic elements shape the Organization ID that a company uses and what users are entitled to.

There are different licenses:

  • Organization ID-level licenses: When you purchase Salesforce, you purchase an org. ID-level license, or edition. An edition defines your:
    • Features, such as Contracts or Collaborative Forecasts
    • Amounts, such as quantity of storage and the number of sandboxes
  • User licenses: determines the baseline of features that a user can access, and every user must have exactly one user license.
  • Permission-set licenses: on top of user licenses, users can be assigned permissions for data access through a profile and optionally one or more permission sets. These offer more functionality to a user in an Organization ID which allows assigned users to use various tools and functions. Permission-set licenses incrementally entitle users to access features that are not included in their user license.
  • Feature licenses (add-on): extend functionality at the Organization ID level. An example is the purchase of more API requests to extend the limit for an Organization ID. A feature license entitles a user to access an additional feature that is not included with his or her user license, such as marketing. Users can be assigned any number of feature licenses.
  • Usage-based licenses: entitle limited sources that an organisation can use on a periodic basis. For example:
    • the allowed number of monthly logins to a partner community
    • the record limit for list users

To read more about Salesforce Licenses, Permissions and User Profiles. 


Challenges & Tips

  1. Find out how many Organization IDs an organisation has. Some companies have more than one Salesforce Organization ID, so make sure to know the total number and have visibility of the licenses and users for each of them. Otherwise, there may be surprises when it comes to renewal time.
  2. Make sure to have an overview of your user account versus your license account. Particularly coming to the negotiations and renewals, it is very important to know how many users the organisation has and how many licenses they need, versus what licenses they have.
  3. It is also important to monitor for unused licenses among the user base. Every time a user moves between departments, changes roles or leaves the organisation, there is a risk of becoming incorrectly licensed. Do users need a new license for their new role or is their existing license sufficient? Perhaps their existing license is now more than they need, and it can be brought back into the pool to prevent another expensive license being purchased for no reason. Also, ensure that a user’s old license is taken back into the central pool to be re-used in the future when the user change roles or leaves the business.


If you want to watch the whole webinar (including the ServiceNow demo), you can download it here.