08th Jan, 2018
Sonal, Yadav, Designation
While it seems that the entire world is moving towards cloud, how many times would you have wondered – it’s not as easy as it sounds! And you’re right – it certainly isn’t a cakewalk but when it becomes a de-facto trend – it is always a better choice to learn the cake recipe.
Let’s see, there are four types of entities when it comes to the cloud: Early Adopters, Innovators, Strategic Buyers and Wait-and-Watch Players. You can be in either of the categories, but you know for a fact that the swifter you take the cloud road, the wiser the move would be.
Opting for cloud can be likened to this analogy – It’s like you have a gym membership wherein, rather than their owning your personal gym – you pay for the membership and enjoy a host of additional facilities at a much lower cost, by sharing the space with others as well.
Sounds rosy, but let’s come to the difficult part…You have all the resources in place, a clear understanding of requirements and even the well-versed workforce, still, what is it that has held you back all this while. It is indeed the complexities associated with transition itself.
Let’s begin by understanding all the probable challenges you may encounter – right from the moment you decide to take the plunge.
- Complexities around analyzing the concurrent licensing models
- Mapping old licenses to the new structure
- Running a thorough check for all the user accounts to confirm the requirements
- Understanding the allocation of software across instances of the cloud
- Monitoring the license usage
- Managing through several levels of licensing for a given product
- Ensuring a fair pay-out since a virtualized environment will span multiple machines
- Understanding the upgrade paths for the future packages and being prepared
The licensing complexity part is actually a tough notch in this case and that’s the reason why many organisations back-off. While all those complexities associated with licensing are enough to make you cave back in but the good news is – things have changed. The best part – you have the option of complete move-over to cloud, no cloud movement and completely on-prem, or even a mix of these two. You see, it’s possible to get the best of both the worlds, quite literally!
The ‘pay as you use’ model of the cloud offering is one of the biggest advantage that you get once you decide to make the move.
So, now that you are convinced of cloud actually being a beneficial move for your business, let’s get done with all the sets of hurdles that you may face from licensing point of view.
There would be these initial irritants such as, which agreement would be the best fit for you, does license mobility exists, how much of a success is the co-working of cloud and on-prem, if USL is applicable to you or not etc.
Once you are there with a right partner, your agreement woes are taken care of as depending upon your requirement, usage commitment and need for support, the partner is going to suggest you either a Web Direct, Open, CSP etc. agreement.Depending upon the type of user you are, the licensing matrix is then demystified further.
If you have already invested heavily into on-prem, there’s license mobility as well as per usage rights taking care of the migration, scale and cost complexities; if you’re ready to upgrade then there’s provision for on-prem to cloud specifications match along with step-up user subscription licenses for existing users and similarly there are various other provisions for ensuring hybrid productivity, remote services, virtual machine access etc.
Right from migration, scale-up to cost – partners these days are all up for simplifying the process as much as possible.
With the right partner selection, you get a bunch of benefits:
- A stable shift in terms of computing paradigms
- An assured licensing matrix instead of a volatile one in cases pertaining developments such as M&A etc.
- Simplified language of license agreements which otherwise holds the key to a host of confusion
- Adherence to industry-standards
- Management of uncapped usage and compliance issues
- Customised budget management
Despite all that, let’s face the truth, change is never an easy proposition for anyone, however, the question is, do the benefits outweigh the effort. In this case, they actually do. By moving to the cloud side, which we all know, will eventually have to be the case – sooner or later, for our own good, there are plethora of blanket benefits that one stands to get, such as:
Access to ongoing innovation
What can be better that you have constant access to all the upgrades without paying extra. Such cross-catalogue access is one major benefit for the organisations.
Investment protection with license portability
When you refresh the hardware, you need not repurchase the software as partners these days provide license portability under various plans.
Multiple partners provision a plan which helps you scale-up without inducing a heavy cost burden on yourself.
It allows you to launch virtual instances or workloads on-demand. Over and above these benefits, in order to simplify the whole gamut of processes, partners these days are also incentivizing the users to encourage them to make the move.
The crux is quite simple – moving “to cloud” is actually a win-win scenario for the cloud vendors and the customers alike. As a vendor, you get to benefit from the economies of scale, while your customer gets to benefit from the additional capabilities that cloud brings at a much lower cost of the shared infrastructure..
While the complexities are simplified to a great extent these days, it all boils down to the requirement of comprehensive planning & coordination in terms of the changing the processes, technology, data, talent pool, security, support, etc. With these initial pre-preps in place, the transition journey today has been smoothened than it was ever before.
What do you think about the changing scenario of software licensing? Share with us your views in the comments section below.