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Case Study
SBL provides proactive Microsoft enterprise agreement support for forensic science

A knowledgeable Microsoft Gold Partner was required by the Forensic Science Service (FSS), to support re-negotiations for its Microsoft Enterprise Agreement.

Microsoft customers have the option to renew their Enterprise Agreement (EA) for one year or to re-sign for another three years and, whichever they choose, need to be sure that they have a real understanding of the latest available software and how it can support their precise needs.

In seeking to renew its EA for three years, the FSS wanted a partner with a consultative, rather than a transactional, approach to partner management. “The chosen partner would need to provide the FSS with all the available commercial options.

Within its tender process, SBL was the only Microsoft Gold Partner to provide the FSS with all the many commercial options available to it and was selected for the project as a result.

Both the FSS and SBL knew it was essential to start planning discussions well before the date of any new agreement so SBL could understand what was driving renewal of the EA, what Microsoft-specific projects the FSS was likely to fulfil during the three-year term of the agreement and the level of SBL consultancy required to make this happen.

As a result, SBL set up a series of planning sessions between Microsoft experts and FSS specialists to study up and coming product update releases, new versions of existing software and new products which the agency may have required as part of its EA. This stage is vital in EA re-negotiations so the customer understands what software it needs and how it can support them.

As well as working proactively with the FSS commercial team, SBL pushed Microsoft to provide the most economically beneficial solution for the agency. As a result, the FSS signed up to a Component Enterprise Agreement, which met its full requirement as originally set out.

The proactive account management approach adopted by SBL has also helped the FSS make the most of EA benefits and continues to add value through astute commercial and technical management of the FSS account.

FSS strategic procurement manager, Paul Lockwood, says “SBL had the consultative and collaborative approach which we were seeking and an in-depth understanding of all the latest commercial options.

“We are very pleased with what they achieved for us. Their work at the time of the renewal, and on-going pro-active account management, has certainly justified our investment in their support and means that we are well prepared for the next three years.”

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