No organization can operate without licencing. Yet, many organizations don’t understand what licences they have or how they are used. Licencing is the fine print on your insurance documents. It’s the lawyer that will help you understand the documents in buying your home. It’s the mechanic that will help you keep your car on the road.
“Licensing is viewed as a singular activity but in reality, it’s a process,” says Walid Jreidini, regional sales manager with COMPAREX Canada. “And you have to follow the process to be successful. It has to be a dynamic process because it’s ever evolving. Products are evolving, solutions are evolving and the technology is evolving.”
The licensing contract you may need—Enterprise Agreement (EA), Microsoft Products and Services Agreement (MPSA), or CSP (Cloud Solution Provider)—will depend on your particular organization, its size, and software usage. But licensing is a science and tailoring is key. Organizations need to understand their legal obligations and the management of the contracts and licensing. They need to understand the solutions and what you need to purchase, what you want to achieve, and how software help make your organization more agile. And, finally, organizations need to know the processes and how to link everything.
Jreidini says IT procurement used to be done by those who procured everything for an organization but that’s not the case now. That changes the discussion of what licensing is and what it means.
“You’re moving from an ROI discussion to an ROV discussion,” Jreidini says.” Previously, ROI was focused on TCO. Now it’s ROV focuses on brokering the best managed services. Companies are seeing the ROV because they see the business value. They are seeing the ROV because it affects the business revenue.”
Many firms don’t understand the terms of agreements on their Microsoft products, and that can come at a cost. Jredini says if you have a five per cent difference on what you purchase and what you have installed, and you are using more products than what you have actually bought, anything above five per cent has a price tag of 125 per cent over the retail price. For customers in the enterprise space, that means 40 per cent at least from an invoicing perspective.
“Our answer to that you need to get better control over what you’re buying,” he says. “But we will help drive you to a less than five per cent error of margin, but it needs to be part of a program where you can justify and gives you the transparency of how you’re using it so you can properly profile the usage of the solution based on the users in your organization.”