Microsoft Corporation is an American multinational corporation headquartered in Redmond, Washington, United States that develops, manufactures, licenses, and supports a wide range of products and services predominantly related to computing through its various product divisions. Established on April 4, 1975 to develop and sell BASIC interpreters for the Altair 8800, Microsoft rose to dominate the home computer operating system market with MS-DOS in the mid-1980s, followed by the Microsoft Windows line of operating systems.
Microsoft has made volume licensing very flexible by providing options to customers. However, the job of determining which agreement is the best fit for your business can be a daunting task. This is why “the software licensing experts” at SoftwareONE are available to provide licensing support for you and your business. We’ll ensure you get the most out of your IT licensing investment.
Keys to Understanding Microsoft Volume Licensing
Listed below are a few keys to understanding the major characteristics of Microsoft Volume Licensing policies and programs and to choosing the best option for your organization:
The size and type of your organization
The products you want to license
The way in which you want to use those products
At the most basic level, Microsoft Volume Licensing program models address organizations in two main categories: organizations with more than 5 but less than 250 computers and organizations with more than 250 computers.
For those organizations with less than 250 computers, the Microsoft Open Programs provide volume discounts for a minimal up-front cost and are available broadly through a worldwide partner channel. Open Programs provide three purchasing license options for commercial businesses: Open Value, Open Value Subscription, and Open License.
Open Value is for organizations with as few as five desktop PCs and offers the advantages of Software Assurance, simplified license management, and an annual payment structure. The Open Value program offers three options: Company-wide, Non–Company-wide, and Open Value Subscription.
Open Value Subscription is for customers in some regions who want to subscribe to, rather than acquire, Microsoft product licenses. Microsoft Open Value Subscription provides the lowest up-front costs of the Open Programs with flexibility to reduce your total licensing costs in years when your desktop PC count declines.
Open License is for customers who want a minimum initial purchase of only five software licenses. This program is ideal if you prefer to pay-as-you-go, an important feature for a growing organization’s changing business needs.
For organizations with 250 or more desktop PCs, Microsoft offers the following four options:
Enterprise Agreement is for larger organizations that want to standardize IT across the enterprise. Based on a three-year enrollment term, it provides the deepest pricing discounts and the advantages of Software Assurance.
Enterprise Subscription Agreement is a Volume Licensing program for large organizations that want to subscribe to—rather than purchase—Microsoft software licenses. This program provides lower annual payments than an Enterprise Agreement but the right to use the software ends at the end of the three-year agreement term.
Select Plus is for large organizations with multiple affiliates that want to license software and services at any business unit level while still getting the advantages of being a single organization.
Select License is for organizations that have mixed software requirements. It is based on a forecast licensing model in which use is measured against the forecast. This program offers a flexible and cost-effective way to make licensing purchases on a pay-as-you-go basis.