Everything You Need to Know About the Microsoft New Commerce Experience (NCE)

Microsoft recently launched the New Commerce Experience (NCE). The goal was to give customers greater choice and flexibility in how they purchased their Microsoft product licenses. There are changes in the billing model, price, and how Microsoft will offer licenses for Microsoft 365, Dynamics 365, Power Platform, and Windows 365 products.

We don’t want you to end up with a surprise bill, so let’s make sure that you understand the pricing and contract changes coming up. You will have until June 30th, 2022, to decide how you want to consume your Microsoft licenses.

Commitment Problems are No Problem with NCE

With NCE, you will have the ability to purchase your Microsoft 365 licenses monthly instead of being locked into an annual commitment. If you do go with the monthly plan, it comes at a 20% price premium across all license plans. However, this plan gives you the most flexibility. It’s like paying for an annual gym membership versus going with the month-to-month plan. You might get a better monthly deal with a yearly contract, but if you decide you don’t need the gym anymore, a month-to-month option lets you cancel whenever you want.

Go Month-to-Month…

The monthly plan lets you add licenses at prorated prices throughout your billing cycle. If you find that you don’t need as many licenses (due to staffing turnover or department restructuring), simply cancel the extra ones at the end of the month. This benefit is something you won’t get with a standard annual license. The monthly plan provides cost savings (in the long run) and flexibility for startups that don’t have consistent license consumption.

…Or Commit and Save Money

You can opt for a 12-month or 36-month subscription that locks you into the current price and saves you money over the long term. This means that you’ll be protected from any future price increases. With the annual or tri-annual commitments, you can increase the number of licenses you’re using but cannot decrease them.

If you’re a steadily growing company, this might be the more cost-effective option for you. However, if your staffing needs are in flux, the annual or tri-annual option probably is not the best choice. This commitment not only locks you in at a specific price, but you cannot change your Microsoft licensing provider during the term of the commitment.

You can choose to pay monthly or annually with the 12-month option. For the tri-annual, 36-month plan, you can pay monthly, annually, or all three years upfront.

What If I Bought the Wrong Subscription?

If you find that you bought too many licenses or signed up for the wrong subscription, Microsoft gives you a seven-day window to cancel or reduce your licenses. This cancellation policy applies to new NCE subscriptions, migrations from legacy, partial upgrades, or a renewed subscription to NCE.

Our NCE Recommendations

For our clients, we recommend going with the monthly plan. Yes, you will be paying more for each license, but the flexibility from the month-to-month plan gives your company the opportunity to grow or downsize. If there is a sudden staffing change or you decide to restructure your organization, the flexibility to add or drop Microsoft licenses means not wasting money on unused licenses.

This article is a summary of the most impactful changes coming when the New Commerce Experience goes live on July 1, 2022. We understand that you will have to make some important decisions regarding how you consume your current Microsoft licenses. Data Evolution is a trusted Microsoft provider, and we are happy to sit down with you to give you more information about the NCE and answer any questions you might have. Give your Data Evolution team a call today!