Microsoft Simplifies the Select Plus Program

The Select Plus agreement, launched in October 2008, was designed for organizations with 250 or more PCs and allows customers to make transactional purchases from three product pools: applications, servers, and systems. Discount price levels are established based on points per product pool and updated as purchases are made. Software Assurance (Microsoft’s term for maintenance or upgrade protection) is optional.

In response to customer’s needs for greater flexibility and ease of manageability, Microsoft made two changes to the Select Plus program that took effect in March 2011.

Change to how rollover points are accounted for:

Customers can now roll points over from one year to the next to stay compliant in their Select Plus agreement. To remain compliant with a Select Plus agreement, customers must annually meet a minimum of 500 points per product pool. At the agreement anniversary date, Microsoft performs a compliance check to determine if the minimum 500-point threshold has been met. If the minimum has not been met, the agreement will be put on hold and a 500 point order is required to reactivate the agreement. Previously, if a customer purchased 700 points in Year 1 (200 points above the 500-point minimum), the customer would still be required to purchase 500 points in Year 2. With the recent changes to the Select Plus agreement, Microsoft will now allow this customer to roll their excess 200 points into Year 2. So the customer would only be required to purchase 300 points of products in Year 2 to meet the purchase minimum. With the recent changes to the Select Plus agreement, Microsoft will now allow this customer to roll their excess 200 points into Year 2. So the customer would only be required to purchase 300 points of products in Year 2 to meet the purchase minimum. Rollover points are always assigned to the following year; however the points do not expire. So if a customer does not use them in a given year, the points will carry over into the next year.

By allowing points to roll over from year to year, customers no longer have to hold off on purchases to meet minimum point requirements. Customers can acquire licenses as needed while still maintaining their discount levels.

Change to Software Assurance purchase terms:

Previously with the Select Plus, every initial Software Assurance (SA) purchase was for a full 36-month term. For customers purchasing licenses with SA at different dates, this meant having to track multiple SA renewal dates.

To alleviate the complexity around renewals, Microsoft will align new License & SA orders to the customer’s next third-year anniversary date. Therefore, customers will be charged a pro-rated renewal price based on the number of months of coverage. Pricing is calculated by determining the number of months until the next anniversary date (1-11 months) and adding 24 months.

Take for example the following scenario:

Let’s say a customer’s agreement anniversary date is January 2010. Two months later in March, the customer purchases a license with 36 months of SA coverage. When this SA renewal comes due in March 2013, Microsoft will prorate their renewal costs so it aligns with the customer’s next third-year anniversary date of January 2016. In this scenario, the customer has 10 months until their next anniversary date and then Microsoft will add 24 months. So the customer’s pro-rated renewal price will be for 34 months. All subsequent renewals will be 36 months.

Have questions about this blog post, or other Microsoft licensing questions? Leave a comment below!

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About Luke Black

Luke Black is a Business Development Manager for Microsoft at Softchoice residing in his hometown of Chicago. Luke has been passionate about the Technology industry for more than 15 years and continues to bring solutions to customers leveraging limited resources, do more.