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10 Key Takeaways From Microsoft Execs On Cloud, AI And Windows

CRN speaks with a handful of Microsoft executives to discuss the future of Azure, Office 365, Windows 10 and security.

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CSP-EA Conflict Has Dropped Significantly

At last year's Inspire conference, Schuster said Microsoft salespeople would receive major incentives to promote Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) program subscriptions instead of traditional Enterprise Agreement (EA) licenses. The move was meant to reduce the conflict between those two ways of procuring Office 365 seats and Azure usage. In an interview with CRN, Schuster said there are clear signs that it's working. Not only did Azure revenue grow 98 percent year over year, but concerns from partners about the issue have largely vanished, she said.

"At the beginning of the year, probably for every two opportunities, you'd have a conflict half the time. Now it's probably one out of 15," said Schuster. "I can tell from my inbox."

CSP's monthly subscription can be adjusted based on usage from month to month, in contrast to the EA, which involves annual agreements. "The thing we're trying to help our sellers understand is that it grows month over month. When you get a customer in and they're doing month over month, it grows much faster," Schuster said. "Because if you just try to capture all of that [demand] one year at a time, the customer's never going to believe you on how much it's going to grow. So they're only going to pay you for less."

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