Businesses of all sizes have enjoyed workplace collaboration, productivity and file sharing benefits from Microsoft SharePoint for over a decade. The company boasts over 190 million users in total, but competition from upstart companies has increased recently.
Microsoft announced in May, 2016, a new version of SharePoint that is expected to equip service providers with an exciting, new suite of cloud-based workplace collaboration that will further enhance their end-customers’ business productivity and performance.
What Do Service Providers Need To Know?
The key ingredient in the latest version of SharePoint is that it will utilize data from Office, such as collaborators on a certain document, lists of people who attended certain meetings, and the ability to smartly compile email contacts who frequently discuss certain topics or documents. All of this will combine to power what Microsoft calls the “Office Graph”, and the new feature will help professionals discover reports, initiatives, news and a variety of data and information vital to business productivity. The bottom line is that via the Office Graph, SharePoint will help employees find information more quickly, ultimately making productivity more intelligent and quicker.
Microsoft will also be releasing mobile apps for iOS, Android and Windows 10 mobile to allow even more access to files and information, and opening up mobile-enabled collaboration and file sharing. All of this will reside on Microsoft’s OneDrive, giving users optimum access to their information whenever they want access. Service providers can learn more about supporting more hosted apps by clicking here for additional resources.
When licensing SharePoint, Windows Server and SQL are required to be licensed as well. Also, when licensing SharePoint it’s licensed on a per-SAL basis for each unique user that has the ability to access SharePoint Server, directly or indirectly, whether they actually access it or not. The difference between SharePoint and other SAL product licenses is that it’s additive, meaning if they need to license the Enterprise edition, they must also report the Standard edition as well. When licensing Project (also via SAL, but not additive) Windows Server must also be reported to cover the base operating system.
Partners will now have the ability to license the 2016 version – there will be no impacts regarding licensing or costs. If they choose to continue using version 2013 they are able to do so. If they choose to use the 2016 version, they will have new capabilities based upon several new features touted by Microsoft.
Therefore, it is important for service providers to understand that they can continue to use and license the 2013 version, and there will not be new or higher costs associated with the new, 2016 version.
Which Service Providers Are Impacted?
Service providers specifically offering hosted licensing solutions for DaaS and Application-as-a-Service will be able to take advantage of the new SharePoint 2016 for their clients. Service providers should also know that the new version of SharePoint’s server software allows businesses to run the program in their own data center while working with applications such as Office 365 that are operated over the Web. Be sure to check out the requirements for becoming a Microsoft CSP if you aren’t already.
Smaller businesses continue to represent a tremendous opportunity for cloud-based solutions and hosted applications based on subscription-as-a-service licenses. What’s more, they’re continuing to outsource their IT needs to service providers throughout the world. Despite this growth, DXC SLMS Hosting advisor, Kim Kuhlmann, notes that it would be wise for service providers to offer the right education to their end customers to see the true ROI.
“We always consult our service provider partners to help them visualize the benefits of the cloud,” said Kuhlmann. “Hosted cloud offerings can help small businesses scale, and applications such as SharePoint can help professionals in connect from remote locations or in mobile environments. Furthermore, the subscription license environments today allow these businesses to scale their needs depending on business needs and activities.”
The DXC SLMS Hosting team frequently works with service provider partners to analyze and assess their portfolio of licenses. By better understanding the full portfolio, service providers may be able to restructure their portfolio to save money.
Want To Get Started?
Are you interested in learning more about hosted licensing opportunities with SharePoint 2016? The DXC SLMS Hosting team is available to help service providers grow by consulting on a wide range of Citrix- and Microsoft-based license and hosting environments. What questions do you have for us? Schedule a session today by clicking on this link. And don’t forget to join our social communities for additional conversation on Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn.