Browsing Posts tagged licensing

It’s getting to be that time of year again – specifically, the end of Microsoft’s fiscal year, June 30. Typically, that’s when they roll out a number of incentives designed to do a number of things:

1 – Help you upgrade your organization to the latest, most productive and efficient versions of Microsoft software
2 – Save you some significant money in the process
3 – Maximize Microsoft’s 4th quarter financial numbers

In other words, there is likely no better time to consider bringing your company up to speed with the latest and greatest in today’s productivity software! Following is a synopsis of the offerings that are available.

The Big Easy 2011

The Big Easy Offer 2011 allows customers to choose from a variety of popular Microsoft products and solutions – Windows Server, SQL Server, and others – while earning money on qualifying purchases that can be used towards additional software, hardware or services from their Microsoft Reseller Partner.

Microsoft Office Professional Plus 2010 Open Value Subscription (OVS)

Customers who sign a new Microsoft Open Value Subscription or Microsoft Open Value Subscription for Government agreement and are acquiring Office Professional Plus 2010 up-to-date (UTD) subscription license and Software Assurance packs can receive up to a 50% discount in the first year of the subscription agreement.

Business Productivity Online Services customer Rewards Offer

Bob already mentioned this promotion in his previous post on our blog. Please refer to that for more details on how you can save money while moving your company’s communication and collaboration solutions to the Microsoft cloud.

Windows 7 Professional Upgrade promotion

Windows® 7 Professional or Windows 7 Enterprise provide increased stability, security, flexibility, and control. Now your organization can realize the benefits of enhanced collaboration, anywhere access and productivity without blowing your IT budget. Through June 30, 2011, you can save 20% if you upgrade your agreement with Software Assurance to Windows 7.

Small-Medium Businesses who deploy Windows 7 receive the following benefits:
• Windows 7 contributes an average ROI of 375%, with an average payback period of seven months.
• Customers who move to Windows 7 increase productivity on average 43 hours per PC per year and realize an average of ~US$1400 savings per PC.

Windows XP is now over 10 years old (time flies when you’re having fun, doesn’t it?). If you’ve been waiting for an extra reason to get current on your Operating System, here it is!

The Simplify & Save Offer

Better track, manage and budget single or multiple volume license agreements with Microsoft’s Simplify and Save Offer when you renew and/or consolidate into a single Open Value agreement!

Take action between October 18, 2010 and June 30, 2011, and you can receive up to:
• 15% discount off Software Assurance for the entire duration (all three years) of an Open Value agreement, for all Open Value products and benefits on the order (Software Assurance renewals only).
• 15% discount off Software Assurance for the entire duration (all three years) of an Open Value Company-wide agreement in addition to the company-wide built-in discount.

Virtualized Desktop Infrastructure Kick Start Promotion

Interested in a Virtual Desktop Infrastructure? Kick start your VDI implementation today and save 50% off the estimated retail price on Microsoft VDI Standard Suite and Citrix XenDesktop VDI Edition. This means you can get started on as little as $7K!

Eligibility
Customers with Microsoft Core CAL or Enterprise CAL suites with Software Assurance through Enterprise and Select family of agreements are eligible for this offer. In addition, Open Value & Campus Agreement and School Agreement (CASA) family of agreements are also eligible starting July 1, 2010. Discount is limited up to 20% of Core CAL or Enterprise CAL covered desktops or 250 devices, whichever is less.

Discount
Eligible customers will receive a 70% discount off the estimated retail price on Microsoft VDI Standard Suite subscription license and a 50% discount on Citrix XenDesktop VDI Edition annual license from their reseller of choice.

Wow!

There is something here for just about anyone who is concerned about keeping up with the improvements in today’s software. Of course, I understand if it’s not always easy to understand and navigate all the terms and ins and outs of Microsoft Licensing. That’s why we’re here!

Simplex-IT is always ready, willing and able to explain the choices and help you pick the best licensing alternatives for your organization. We can also help you implement those choices, if you desire. So give us a call at 234.380.1277 or send me an email at John@Simplex-IT.com and we’ll help you get your company to where you want to be – with the greatest savings and in the most efficient manner possible!

Those of us who have used Microsoft software before are numerous. Those of us who’ve been involved in Microsoft’s licensing before are equally numerous, however, with few exceptions, they require some form of counseling and possibly pharmaceuticals.

Take Microsoft Office, for example. You would think that the question would simply be “what is the easiest way that my company can actually purchase and legally use the software?” Sorry, friends and neighbors, it’s tougher than that. OEM software, retail software, Open License, Open Value, Open Value subscription, Office 365, Office Web apps, Office with Lemon (okay, I’m making that one up).

You get the idea.

It’s fairly routine for us, when working with a new customer, to discover that they have several versions of Office throughout their organization. We refer to these situations as “geological digs.” What ends up happening in these environments is you have people throughout the organization each with their own user experience and user environment. Some might be able to use the new Office document formats, some might only be able to use the new formats, some wouldn’t understand the new format if it bit them in the nose.

On top of all this, consider the support. When someone calls and says “I have trouble with Word” to support we give that person differs dramatically on the version that they’re currently using. So support costs are increased.

At this point in time the flagship products for the stock generation are Office 2003 and Microsoft Windows XP. The problem is, these things work. They work very well. However, these things are also well past their prime. So we’re faced with a dilemma.

The web is full of articles and sites that are aimed at tell you why you should upgrade. They do a much better job than we ever will with that discussion and argument. The question we also run into is WHEN should we upgrade?  Are there certain times where it’s more advantageous than others to invest in new software for the organization?”

The answer there is a lot simpler. The answer is “yes.” And here’s why.

Microsoft, as many of you might know, runs on a fiscal year ending June 30. And like every other public company out there, they want to look good when June 30th rolls around. How do they do this? Simple, they do this through sales.  Yep, Microsoft wants you to buy more stuff before June 30th.

Also they want you to buy their newest stuff. No surprise here, when you think about it. This is why I tell people whenever a new version of a product or new product comes out there’s going to be about a three-month honeymoon period, where Microsoft will create and have incentives for you, the customer, to purchase the stuff.

The simplest way to know about these is, of course the web. Microsoft maintains a site www.Microsoftincentives.com.  This shows you the latest incentive program that Microsoft has for organizations purchasing Microsoft software, and it’s updated every month. Microsoft seems to become most aggressive for the software sales during the months of May and June. There are also additional programs usually in the November-December time frame for everybody else’s end of year.

Microsoft Incentives Site

Home Page for Microsoft Incentives Site

This doesn’t mean that Microsoft doesn’t have programs or special deals or the like throughout the rest of the year. There’s always something up on the web from Microsoft. Usually it deals with license programs for new releases. But that’s not always the case.

So how do you keep track of all this? Simple, you don’t. That’s where working with the Microsoft Partner (such as Yours Truly) works to your advantage. Part of our job, part of our livelihood in fact, comes from our relationship with Microsoft. Part of our value to our customers is knowing what our customers are looking to do in the next six months and then developing the best strategy moving forward taking advantage of these incentives and programs. And of course, it’s not just Microsoft. Other vendors, Cisco, SonicWall, others have incentives and programs as well. But from our experience, Microsoft seems to lead the pack in terms of peculiar licensing and peculiar promotions. And, since licensing on the level of your desktop in sheer numbers is greater than most others, special deals and promotions can have a greater impact on your organization’s bottom line.

So here’s the question: if your company has been using the same version of Office and Windows for the last X number of years, and are warm and happy, should you look to upgrade? Again, look to your Microsoft Partner. If they’re worth their salt, the discussion should be based around what the new software and the new licensing can bring to your organization in terms of savings and efficiency. If it sounds like a sales pitch, perhaps you’ve got the wrong partner.

Dateline Thursday, June 03, 2010 –I just participated in a Microsoft sponsored event, TechNet Events Present: Launch 2010 Highlights, to find out first-hand what Microsoft® Office® 2010 and SharePoint® 2010 mean for the productivity of our customers and our people—across PC, phone, and browser. Very well presented by Microsoft veteran, Matt Hester, the attendees learned how this latest wave of technologies provides a revolutionary user experience and how it takes us into a future of even greater productivity.

Of course, we at Simplex-IT have been using the Office 2010 beta since it’s been available but, even so, I did learn a few new tricks. The tight integration between Office and SharePoint was especially touted and demonstrated, giving me even greater insight into the possibilities these technologies offer.

So if you’ve been thinking about upgrading, especially if you’re still using Office 2003 or earlier, my personal recommendation is…DO IT! And if you need to talk about licensing multiple copies for your organization, don’t forget, Simplex-IT can help!

P.S. This just in! Microsoft has extended their Big Easy licensing promotion. Contact Simplex-IT for the attractive details, but suffice it to say, here’s just one more reason to make the move to Office 2010 you’ve been contemplating!