In September 2019, Microsoft announced to its Volume Licensing customers that they will be making changes to their Software Assurance program in an effort to modernize the benefits to align with customer’s needs and their new product and technology offerings.

What exactly does this mean to customers, especially those who currently have products covered with SA? Three of your benefits are being changed or retired in favour of other more modern, cloud friendly programs:

DEPLOYMENT PLANNING SERVICES are going to be retired in phases over the next 2 years in favour of FastTrack program which helps customers deploy Azure, Microsoft 365, and Dynamics 365 workloads.

                Key dates:

  • February 1, 2020 Microsoft will be removing Cloud services from the DPS catalog. After this date, customers will be directed to use FastTrack programs – more details about FastTrack are here
  • Also on February 1, 2020 customers will no longer be able to convert training vouchers to Planning Services Days. If you’d like to do this (using the 3:1 ratio as in the past) please do so in the VLSC portal prior to this date.
  • February 1, 2021 customers will no longer accrue DPS days and will be the last day for new/renewing contracts to create DPS vouchers
  • June 30, 2021 is the last day to create DPS vouchers for existing contracts. You have 180 days to use vouchers which means that January 1, 2022 will be the very last day to redeem.

TRAINING VOUCHERS will similarly be retired over the same period as Microsoft introduces Modern Skilling Programs. More training will be available online at Microsoft Learn as well as their continued commitment to instructor led training through new certifications and role-based courses.

                Key dates:

  • February 1, 2020 all Azure relating training will be retired from SATV catalog and training days can no longer be converted to DPS, as mentioned above
  • February 1, 2021 customers will no longer accrue training days and will be the last day for new/renewing contracts to create training vouchers
  • June 30, 2021 is the last day to create training vouchers for existing contracts. You have 180 days to use vouchers which means that January 1, 2022 will be the very last day to redeem.

24×7 PROBLEM RESOLUTION SUPPORT eligibility is being adjusted as well as changes being made to support incident allocations. Customers are no longer going to earn a limited number of support incidents based on spend, agreement type, and products.  Instead, customers will receive basic support with an SA spend of $250,000 USD or more annually. Basic support is defined as business hours support with a 24-hour response time goal.

Instead of converting unused support incidents, customers will receive a credit to account for the price paid for SA support. This credit will only be available to customers who move or renew on Microsoft Unified Support.

Key dates:

  • As of February 1, 2020 customers will want to begin the final conversion of incidents toward Premier or Unified Support. You will have one more time to do this, until February 1, 2021.
  • February 1, 2021 24×7 Problem Resolution Support days will no longer be accrued.
  • Also on February 1, 2021 the new support model will be launched to provide as needed incident support to customers who have $250k USD or more annually in SA spend. The credit for Unified Support customers will be put into place at this time as well.

Make sure you make the best use of your DPS and Training days by reaching out to your

Long View Account Manager and/or Licensing Specialist.