With Microsoft ending extended product support for Office 2010 in October, organisations that are still using this version may believe their only migration path is to the subscription based Office365. Nevertheless, there is a more cost-effective solution that most conventional Microsoft Resellers don’t talk about: pre-owned perpetual licensing. This option can provide a more up-to-date Office suite for only slightly more than an annual Office 365 subscription.
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Though Office365 is a powerful tool with lots of great features, most users will only actually use a small percentage of the full capability of the software suite. This will be especially true for organisations who have been generally happy using older Office suites, getting full value from their software investment but are migrating because of concerns about lack of support rather than an operational requirement to move to a newer version. The other problem these organisations face is that by moving to subscription licensing, rather than the periodical capex for software, there will be a rise in the annual operational costs for IT. Yes, the initial costs are less than owning your software, but this expenditure will be repeated year-on-year. If an organisation in the past would use the same Office suite for 5 years or more, moving to a subscription will be a massive increase in costs over the same period. Most of us would agree that over time, as a rule, it is more cost effective to own than rent.
Microsoft still offer perpetual versions (one-time purchase) of the Office suite even if conventional resellers might lead us to believe otherwise. With the basic subscription Microsoft 365 Apps for Business costing around £94.80 per user/per year, on the face of it, the price is attractive against the one-time purchase price of £249.99 for Office Home & Business. However, in less than 3 years, the cost of the subscription exceeds the cost of the one-time payment version so for an organisation that previously used an Office suite for 6 or more years, their expenditure on software is more than doubling. That is also assuming the software manufacturer doesn’t increase their prices during that period. Yes, by renting your software, you always have the most up-to-date version with all the latest features but does this increased spending translate to such an improved bottom line it more than offsets the additional expense? Probably not.
For many businesses, 2020 has been a tough trading year so being able to stay with a software product that users are familiar with for a much lower outlay is very attractive, even if the organisation would prefer to own their asset. This is where pre-owned licensing can offer a real cost-effective alternative. For a lot less than the cost of 2 years subscription to the basic Microsoft 365 package, organisations can own a perpetual copy of Office 2019 from Discount-Licensing. Greater savings can be made by purchasing the excellent Office 2016, which will still be in extended support until October 2025. Finance options are also available if there is a need to spread the cost.
If your organisation is looking to replace its Office Suite, Microsoft will steer you towards one of their subscription offerings, trying to seduce you with all its bells and whistles but will it give enough of the return on investment it needs to, given the increasing annual outlay especially when most users probably only need a fraction of its capability. Pre-owned software from a reputable supplier like Discount-Licensing can offer a cost-effective alternative to rental. Subscription licensing is good for Microsoft’s business but is it good for yours?