This week Microsoft announced a new milestone in their Modern licensing journey. Over the last 30 years, Microsoft has strived to provide organizations of every size access to their products, technologies, and solutions. A result has been an ever-growing list of ways in which you can buy these services, from various licensing types, programs, platforms, and price points. This experience has left customers confused with what is the best option for their organization, and created a demand from Microsoft to begin simplifying their licensing options.
In July of 2014, Microsoft began its transition to a modern licensing platform with the launch of the Cloud Solution Provider Program (CSP). With cloud technologies changing the economies of the software market, the launch of CSP was the first step in a move to consolidate older platforms, streamline processes, and ultimately provide an enhanced customer experience around Microsoft licensing. CSP provides customers access to Azure and Office 365 technologies and solutions, bundled with managed services and support from partners like Insight.
The CSP agreement provides significant improvements to the customer experience across multiple fronts. First, customers now have greater flexibility to match business requirements with the ability to flex up and down and across technologies, on a month-to-month basis with zero upfront commitments. Second, services and support for products under a CSP agreement are provided directly by a Microsoft partner. Insight provides this service and support as well as an enhanced experience beyond this requirement through 24/7 access to our help desk without the requirement of purchasing a separate Microsoft support agreement. Finally, the CSP agreement is a simpler evergreen agreement signed digitally.
This month Microsoft announced the next milestone in the Modern licensing journey with the launch of the Microsoft Customer Agreement (MCA). Available for select commercial customers beginning in March 2019. TheMCA provides customers with a direct agreement with Microsoft, and access to additional third party services via a Microsoft marketplace. Currently the MCA is only available for commercial customers, and is limited to purchases of Azure services.
There has never been better time to consider a move to the cloud. Microsoft continues to invest in new services, technologies, and solutions to better your business. With the CSP & MCA agreements, Microsoft is providing access to better, more streamlined experiences for Azure and Office 365.