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The Ripples Change Their Size But Never Leave The Stream

by Stephen White  |  January 29, 2016  |  Comments Off on The Ripples Change Their Size But Never Leave The Stream

As many mourn the passing of David Bowie this month, and one considers the extent of his impact over more than four decades, it’s interesting to ponder how much has changed during that period.

An enigma perhaps, creative, resilient, influential and unique, but also a collaborator with artists like Mick Jagger and Queen ( a personal favorite), one can only imagine how he viewed the constant constant arrival of new artists only for them to disappear from view rapidly.

Technology lacks tradition, what was great 40 years ago has no place in today’s environment and is constantly evolving. A combination of new players entering the market place creating competitive forces plus efficiency of new technology drives the established and long term vendors to adapt their offerings, capabilities and commercial terms.

Software publishers and hardware vendors alike are thus in a continuous cycle of innovation and change, creating pressure on their own operations but clients alike who adapt and react to the changes brought on by new versions, products and updates, at times with a limited road-map and runway to plan accordingly. For many the degree of change will be the motivation for their career and commitment to technology, for others the challenge is adapting to change and choosing a path that navigates hype or complexity and delivers value.

During a workshop at our European Symposium in November I was asked by an attendee what one source could clients access to understand all changes to Microsoft licensing and pricing. Whilst the detailed world of SKUs, contract terms and use rights may not be on a level with the creative evolution of music entertainment, it is certainly subject to many shifts, which may not be either front of mind or a priority to identify.

The point made by our workshop attendee was that those changes lack exposure, which thereby makes planning and navigation challenging. Similarly clients will likely lack dedicated resource to stay on top of changes. During sessions at events in London and Dallas last fall, when an audience of IT asset management and procurement professionals were asked who monitors monthly changes in Microsoft’s product terms, less than 1% confirmed they did so.

Recognizing the challenge of researching and staying in touch with change, this month we produced an update to our resource which captures key changes to pricing, metrics and terms and summarized the general impact on clients who’ve made a contractual commitment to Microsoft from 2012 through 2015  In order to access our toolkit you will need an active Gartner subscription,

It may not be one of your new year’s resolutions to stay on top of the minutiae of Microsoft licensing, but using this resource one can trace time in the context of Microsoft commercials at least, use the format to capture the inevitable further changes announced and adapt your own organization’s plans as necessary. Whether or not you have a Gartner subscription at your disposal, be sure to leverage your software reseller, who will be notified of changes by vendors regularly and may the most practical route to keep in touch with updates.

itle credit to David Bowie’s Changes RIP




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Category: asset-management  it-cost-optimization  

Tags: change-management  cost-optimization  microsoft  software-asset-management  

Stephen White
Research Director
4 years at Gartner
16 years IT Industry

Stephen White is a Research Director in Gartner's IT Asset Management, Vendor Management and Procurement team, focusing on strategic licensing and negotiation strategies, asset management, and reseller engagement. Mr. White leverages his experience in software sales and consulting to assist IT leaders through his coverage of best practices in license life cycle strategy and trends, license metric and pricing practices, contract negotiations, optimizing terms and conditions, sourcing, and relationship management. Read Full Bio

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