Recently Microsoft announced an increase for the first time ever, in the price of customers annual Support/Service plans for Dynamics GP. When communicating this news with our Dynamics GP customers affected by this price increase, we got a lot of questions about “what exactly do we receive with our plan?”
So, let’s go back to the basics!
- What is the annual Microsoft Support/Service Plan? The annual Support/Service plan is Microsoft’s software maintenance plan. There are three available plan options, and it is calculated based on a customer’s Protected List Price (PLP). PLP is the total dollar value of the software a customer owns.
- What are the Three Plan Options? The three available plans for Dynamics customers are the Enhancement Plan (17% of PLP), the Advantage Plan (19% of PLP), and the Advantage Plus Plan (25% of PLP)
- What benefits do we get being current on a plan? All the plans include access to the following benefits:
- CustomerSource: Access to Microsoft’s customer portal, which includes training courses, self-help options, downloads, tips, and more. Take advantage of this online customer portal during the term of your service plan to find answers to the most common Microsoft product questions, including troubleshooting steps, easy access to Microsoft’s Knowledge Base to find solutions to common issues, and how-to articles.
- Community and Support Forums: Take advantage of the Microsoft Dynamics Community to help answer your questions. This forum is great to exchange ideas, ask questions, and discuss solutions with your peers.
- New Version Rights: During the term of your plan, you are entitled to any new version rights and updates released for your Microsoft Dynamics product.
- Service Packs and Hot fixes: Service packs and hot fixes are created and released at the discretion of Microsoft for issues identified for Microsoft products. Many hot fixes are frequently combined into a single package (called a service pack), which is made available to customers. During the term of your service plan coverage, you will have access to all service packs and hot fixes released for your Microsoft Dynamics product during the Mainstream Support Phase, providing your product is listed as a supported product.
- Tax and Regulatory Releases: During the term of your plan, you will have access to the commercially available tax and regulatory releases for your Microsoft Dynamics products. Updates for Microsoft Dynamics products are generally released each fiscal year or on an as-needed basis for software in the Mainstream Support phase of the Fixed Support Lifecycle and the Modern Support Lifecycle, if you stay current on your plan.
- Protected List Price (PLP): If you are current on your plan, the system list price at the time you purchased your Microsoft Dynamics license will serve as the basis on which Microsoft calculates your annual service plan renewal.Note: Unsupported Products – During the term of your plan coverage, if you are on an unsupported version of Dynamics GP, you are not entitled to any new version rights, updates, service packs, hot fixes, or tax and regulatory releases. For a list of Microsoft Dynamics products that are currently supported, go to the Microsoft Support Lifecycle website.
- Transition Investment Credits: Customers must be current on a plan if they want to perform a product line transition or License Model transition ( from the old Module-based licensing model to Perpetual etc.)
- How do these three plans differ? The only difference in these plans is that the Advantage & Advantage Plus plans also include support incidents directly from Microsoft*.
- Advantage Plan: includes six (6) annual electronic or telephone support incidents (with 3 hours response time)
- Advantage Plus Plan: includes unlimited electronic or telephone support incidents (severity based)
*Note: this is support from Microsoft, not from the CAL support team. Customers submit this support directly to Microsoft through CustomerSource.
- Are we required to be current on a plan? The Advantage Plan is required for the 1st year for any new Dynamics GP software purchases, after the 1st year a customer is not required to remain on a plan, but it is highly recommended. CAL does not recommend lapsing on your annual Service Plan as you will no longer have access to important updates, hot fixes, new versions etc.
- Can we change plans? Yes, a customer can upgrade to a higher plan at any time. A customer can also downgrade to a lower plan, but that can ONLY be done at the time of your renewal.
To learn more and for a full list/description of these plans & benefits, check out the Microsoft Service Support Plan Comparison Chart.
By CAL Business Solutions, www.calszone.com Microsoft Dynamics GP Partner