Update to councils on the ongoing discussions with Microsoft 22 February 2019
Meeting 13th February 2019
Attendees: Chris Perkins (CP - Microsoft), Daniel Batts (DB - Microsoft), Faith La Grange (FLG - Microsoft), Sarah Pickup (SP - LGA), Tina Holland (TH - LGA), Myron Hrycyk (MH - Cabinet Office), Benjamin Paynter (BP - CCS), Rachel Butlin (RB - CCS), Nadira Hussain (NH - Socitm)
Socitm, LGA and CCS are continuing to meet with Microsoft colleagues to work through the issues and concerns that have been raised regarding price increases by our members. These meetings will be an ongoing feature so that we can strengthen our relationship with Microsoft and between the various parties and to continue to lobby our sectorial views.
Since the last meeting in December, Microsoft have shared with us data that shows councils engaged along with current agreement termination dates and whether the agreements cover on-premise or cloud licenses. From this we can estimate each council’s ‘propensity’ to move towards cloud-based services. LGA and Socitm have added further information to the data so that we can also undertake regional and council-type analysis.
Microsoft, in common with other software providers has a ‘cloud first’ policy and wishes to move all of its services to the cloud. This is the point of the DTA agreement they have already negotiated with CCS. It is argued that use of cloud technology is better value and safer in terms of cyber security. It is recognised that moving to cloud technology will be a financial and culture struggle for many councils.
We had previously agreed that Microsoft would work with five councils to help them to understand how they can make best use of the technology they are already procuring from Microsoft and we were waiting for Microsoft to provide us with a Terms of Reference document for this work.
We also discussed developing a standardised commercial strategy for the next three years following the affordability challenge being articulated by councils. It was agreed that Microsoft would engage with CCS to with reference to the DTA to consider if there is any possibility of realigning this to meet local government need in particular.
It was also agreed that where councils are experiencing particular problems with pricing that they should get in touch with their reseller account team. It would be really helpful if this applies to you that you cc in Microsoft/LGA/Socitm in order that we can keep a record of the extent of the issue using the following email addresses: Faith La Grange Faith.La@microsoft.com, Tina Holland Tina.Holland@local.gov.uk and Nadira Hussain firstname.lastname@example.org
Actions from the meeting were:
- FLG to finalise the ToR offering Microsoft (MS) support to five local authorities by cop Friday 22nd Feb. ToR to incorporate:
- A base-lining exercise to ensure right-sizing of licenses via the reseller
- The Microsoft Account Team to offer input to determine that the right mix of licenses is in place
- Ensuring that the benefit and value that can be obtained from the current services is being realised through access to the ‘fast track’ arrangement
- Extending the offer of other value-add services if the specific council is ready and responsive to greater support via other new products/services. Establishing a discrete outcome to demonstrate the potential further value-add as a subsequent phase of the ToR.
- NH to review the proposed ToR and share with LGA and CCS colleagues for completeness. NH to write to key contacts to inform them of the approach being recommended of the ToR and associated timeframe for support arrangements to commence.
- MS have been requested to give consideration to the core components of a commercial strategy, focusing on:
- Clarity about the technical roadmap over the next 18-36 months
- Commercial construct to underpin the roadmap
- Determination of a pricing model; set at a point where we can help the sector achieve the necessary journey and outcomes
- Segmentation approach (those with 50% or less cloud propensity) – how is MS going to help councils to improve their adoption of cloud.
- CCS to meet with MS to discuss the points above as well as the possible fine-tuning of the DTA arrangements to ensure that they reflect the needs of the sector.
- Members/council’s who are experiencing difficulties/want to discuss the renewal aspect to be encouraged to talk directly to their account teams and to inform Socitm/LGA/FLG who will co-ordinate any feedback. LGA/Socitm will aim to have all the information to be able to hold a record of which LAs have received help/pricing concessions from MS and what this actually amounts to.
- Continue with the relationship building through ongoing joint meetings and a presence from MS at Socitm regional forums, conferences and other events where we can collectively share updates and progress.