I can’t promise you that one blog post is going to give you all the information you need about Microsoft’s Enterprise Agreement (EA). But I can promise that you’ll learn about a tool that allows you to quickly find out if you should even consider Microsoft EA. And why would you? That’s an easy one, because under the right circumstances, hands down, an enterprise agreement can save you as much as 45%. Our team developed this assessment tool to get you started and it only takes about 5 minutes. Promise. Keep reading for all the specifics.
If you want to jump ahead and get started with the tool, you’ll find it’s intuitive. Of course, our team is happy to assist with your assessment—just ask. Before we go too far, I want to recap quickly what we covered in Part 1 of this EA series. My colleague Jack Dillman covered EA 101. He actually looked more at what the Enterprise Agreement is, what the benefits associated with the Enterprise Agreement are, how it work, what the mechanics in terms of licensing are, plus additional benefits so it was really a holistic look at the program itself. If you missed it, you can still view EA 101.
Now we’re going to look more closely at an assessment that we’ve built to help you understand if an EA may be a good fit for you.
Probably the most important question we start with is the number of users you have in your environment. Enterprise Agreement is generally set up with a minimum of 250 seats. Those can be devices or users or in some cases a mix of both. If you’re not quite there, say maybe in the 215–220 range, you still might see benefit from an Enterprise Agreement, so please continue.
Next we explore what is currently in use and any upgrade plans. I want to stress that these questions that we’re asking are very specific to the intersection between technology plans and licensing. Everything asked in this assessment has a material impact on your licensing choices. Here’s why: Central to the heart of an Enterprise Agreement is what kind of upgrade path you’re on for the big pieces of the Microsoft stack, such as Windows, Office, SharePoint, Lync, etc. We want you to identify what version you’re using today and what would be your ideal upgrade frequency—if you could wave a wand and say how often you’d like to upgrade this technology. At this stage we have some really key data to uncover things that are central to determine whether an Enterprise Agreement is a good fit or not.
The next part covers qualifying questions about cloud and how you use Office. Office is a big part of any Enterprise Agreement—how you’re deploying and how you're managing and how you’re using Office can also determine if an EA is the right answer for your organization.
So that exercise should take about 5 minutes, and then you get a grade. Here’s how they stack up:
- A means an EA is probably a good choice for your future
(so we'll talk to you about how to get started on an Enterprise Agreement.)
- B or C means we should look a little deeper and see if it’s a fit or not.
(If it’s not we’ll work on looking at other options. Microsoft has a lot of different licensing options.)
An “A” is not the only road to an EA. Other grades don’t necessarily mean an EA is a bad fit. Our goal is to help you pick the one that is best suited for you. We’re not in the business of selling people things they don’t need, so we’ll show you a lot of other good choices that will help you get where you need to get.
Ready to get started? You can complete this assessment or work with your PC Connection Account Team and make it a collaborative effort. We have a whole army of experts standing by to help customers with this process and make sound decisions.