What’s wrong with Microsoft’s Dynamics licensing

News from Convergence is that Microsoft introduced a Dynamics Client for Office and SharePoint, which will be a user-based licence, to encourage Office and portal integration with Dynamics apps.

AMR discusses it here, and say that the new licence can only be purchased if customers are on the Advanved Management (AM) editions of Business Ready licensing. AMR note that 90% of AX customers are on AM, and 50% of  NAV and GP customers. It doesn’t surprise me that AX has 90% on AM because they tend to be complex sites, but that 50% coverage needs more analysis. It means 50% of NAV and GP customers are not able to take advantage of the new Client licence, and the number customers in that group is far greater than the 90% of AX licences.

The reason why half of all NAV and GP customers are still on the (lower) Essentials edition is that they don’t need, and don’t want to pay for, the additional functionality in AM. The Dynamics Business Ready licensing forces companies to decide whether they want basic functionality, or license functionality that they may never use.

There were cases I had in my previous NAV experience where companies needed inventory or CRM functionality in NAV, but to get it they would have to select the AM edition licence, which was at least 50% more than the Essentials licence. Trying to sell that to companies for whom price is the major decision factor was a difficult job.

When Microsoft announced the Business Ready license model they gave all sorts of reasons for it. However, I know many Dynamics partners considered it a bad move, and were concerned it would put them in a worse competitive price situation.

If Microsoft wants the new Client licence to get adopted widely, and that means by the majority of its Dynamics customers, I would recommend they make the Client licence available to all editions of Dynamics.

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