Voted Best Answer
Jul 19, 2016 - 03:19 AM
Thanks for this Martin, I am guessing this loops back to our tweet / discussion the week before at a Bytes SAM Summit in London, when after some hard questions from me, Microsoft made some statements about conceding accidental shelf-ware.
This played as follows:
During a live panel debate, on which I was sitting, an audience member raised a question regarding audits in general and Microsoft’s behaviour during audits; following an answer from Microsoft I raised the issue of charging for accidental shelf-ware.
Microsoft’s response was that this is regularly conceded, “much to the annoyance of his Project & Visio teams”.
My follow-up was that this was all well and good, but I stressed that the concession usually forms part of a broader negotiation, where Microsoft use the accidental non-compliance as a lever to get the customer to concede something else. In some cases pushing them to settle on less favourable terms or buy things they do not need, all because of some accidentally deployed software that the customer has derived no business benefit from.
The response from Microsoft, after some seat shuffling, was clear, “that’s wrong and we should not be doing that.”
So, for those of us at the Bytes SAM Summit the answer is clear if you are in an audit position and have some accidental shelf-ware identified then Microsoft have clearly stated that it should not form part of the negotiation and should be conceded without question.
So, we tweeted about this and asked the question
“At @Bytes_Software #SAMsummit @Microsoft announce shelf-ware audit issues "should be conceded" will they fulfil? We shall see!”
This is something that I hope people who read this forum and in the wider SAM community will keep a look out for and report back on.
Interestingly, at the Manchester SAM summit further issues were raised regarding Microsoft’s audit behavior; including customers being advised incorrectly by their resellers and the lack of support from Microsoft to help resolve those issues.
SAMGarde are regularly called upon by customers seeking help in these situations and it is our belief that Microsoft are culpable for the errors of their resellers and be more supportive of their end customers. In one audit that SAMGarde defended a reseller had given incorrect licensing advice and also had deployed the software in a way that was out-with the terms of the licence agreement. The Microsoft response was pretty horrific “You could have chosen anyone to be your reseller, it was your choice and their error is your problem.”
Enterprise end customers are nearly all required to have a reseller and they must choose from a list supplied by Microsoft, that is maintained by Microsoft & whose members are trained and certified by Microsoft.
Given the above can anyone explain how Microsoft can possibly have zero culpability for the errors of their resellers..? What this clearly highlights is how important it is to obtain truly independent SAM advice, form a company with no hidden vested interests…
In closing, there are a lot of very positive statements coming from Microsoft about looking at audit differently and treating customers more supportively, but as our tweet asks…
“Will they fulfill? We shall see…”