With Azure, organizations have many choices to make, from which services to use to how to purchase, manage and govern its use.
In October 2019, Microsoft announced changes to the volume licensing programs in ways that affected a customer’s ability to acquire Azure. Specifically, Microsoft:
- Will no longer write new Azure-only Server and Cloud Enrollment (SCE) agreements
- Will no longer renew Azure-only SCE agreements and subject any extended contracts to a 3 percent administrative fee
- Will no longer allow Azure to be added to existing Enterprise Agreement (EA) contracts
CDW’s Azure Expert Managed Service Provider Designation
But not to worry, CDW is able to help you. We are excited to announce that with our attainment of the very selective Azure Expert MSP designation (mentioned here in my colleague Dan Lausted’s blog), we are one of the few partners that can help customers transition their Azure subscriptions to the Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) program. This change will enable CDW to work even more closely together with you on your Azure efforts from assessments to governance, pilots, migrations and management.
In transitioning your Azure spend to CSP, CDW becomes your primary point of contact around your use of Azure. Included at no additional cost to you, CDW Amplified™ Services for Azure provides the following benefits:
- CDW becomes your primary technical support for Azure with 24/7/365 support for Priority 1 issues
- CDW will bill you for Azure consumption using your CDW credit terms
- Your CDW account manager becomes your single point of contact for Azure and related needs
- CDW Managed Services for Azure – Basic tier is included at no cost, providing advanced enterprise cost management, security and governance for Azure
You also get to tap into the vast experience and capabilities of CDW, from our partnerships with Microsoft and Azure ISVs, to Azure pre-sales architects and professional and managed services engineers, all orchestrated by your CDW account manager.
The Process ― Moving Your Azure Subscription to CSP
The transition process will not affect any running Azure services. Let me repeat that ― the process will not affect any running Azure services. They don’t go down. There is no reconfiguration. The transition process itself is simply a billing relationship change behind the scenes. However, before that can happen there are some steps that we will take to make sure that this is the right decision for you and for CDW.
Step 1: Assess Your Azure Subscriptions
All Microsoft Azure services are available to EA and SCE customers moving to CSP. However, Microsoft makes the rules here and there are some contract scenarios on the EA and SCE that are not supported in CSP due to the change in the contract type. Our goal here is to review any impacts there may be to your organization.
Our experience in helping customers make this transition has also turned up some configuration issues that need to be remedied before the billing transfer. Mostly this is correcting the role-based access control assignments to ensure that all services are secured by using your company’s Azure Active Directory accounts. We view this as a little security health check to ensure best practices are adhered to before taking over responsibility for your Azure subscriptions.
Step 2: Establish a Reseller Relationship
In this step, we’ll need you to accept a link hosted on a Microsoft website to allow us to provision a new container subscription in your Online Services tenant to serve as the billing context for the transitioned Azure subscriptions.
Step 3: Place Your Order with CDW
We need to collect some order information (those bills need to go somewhere) and need your signature on CDW’s paperwork ― basic contractual steps. Finally, CDW provisions the subscription mentioned in the last step.
Step 4: Transfer the Billing Relationship
We’ll take the information collected so far and submit it to Microsoft. You will get an email that allows you to approve the transfer and, once submitted, CDW now has billing responsibility. You’ll get a final bill from Microsoft and then a new bill from CDW the following month. If you didn’t transfer all your Azure subscriptions over to CDW you may see bills from Microsoft ― don’t worry, you’re not getting double billed.
Step 5: CDW Managed Services for Azure Onboarding
Once the billing relationship has been transitioned, the CDW Managed Services team engages and onboards you fully to CDW services. As part of this process, CDW will request access to your Azure subscriptions, set up your access to Cloud Health and ensure that you have information on how to contact CDW for any support needs. Customers purchasing higher tiers of managed services will receive additional onboarding to integrate monitoring tools in your environment.
What’s Next for Your Azure Deployment?
Transitioning your EA or SCE to CDW creates the foundation for a deeper, collaborative relationship and CDW has a deep catalog of services to help you get more from your Azure investment. For more information on how CDW can help, contact your CDW account manager today.