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New Commerce Experience (NCE) is the next stage in Microsoft’s evolution of their Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) program and this phase of the transformation introduces seat-based offers for Microsoft 365, Dynamics 365, Power Platform and Windows 365 into this new billing platform.

Much like when Azure shifted to NCE, the transiton has lead a lot of curiousity in regards how this affects your business. This is especially true when considering the future of your end-customers’ experience of buying, managing and using Microsoft services.

Partners, we’ve got your back! To help your transition we’ve compiled the seven most important aspects you need for navigating these changes with ease. Let’s get to it!

NCE fundamentals for MSPs

  1. What exactly is NCE?

This new direction for the CSP program is based on the same ideas that made CSP the go-to for partners that sell value-added cloud solutions. NCE is a unified billing platform that provides resellers with new tools to make it easier to manage subscriptions. The overall goal with its introduction is to simplify licensing and how customers transact.

The benefits for partners include new sales capabilities, operational efficiencies and driving long-term customer commitment with multiple term options.

  1. When does NCE go live?

While New Commerce Experience is already live, there are actually multiple phases that will be rolling out throughout this year and into 2023. This means that there’s no one day that you have to switch to NCE—you can continue on legacy while also starting to purchase NCE SKUs, up to a point—but there will come a day when NCE is the new norm.

 

  1. Key changes

There are a few key changes to look out for when making the switch to NCE:

  • Multiple term options

Choose from monthly, annual or 3-year terms when making the switch to NCE.

For customers with a consistent need for the same number of licenses, annual or 3-year terms may prove the best option. On the other hand, monthly terms will have a 20% price premium but provide added flexibility for customers with contract workers or seasonal variations in the number of licenses.

  • 72-hour cancellation policy

NCE introduces a cancellation policy that’s quite different from the legacy platform. Subscriptions can only be canceled within the first 72 hours of purchase. If the subscription is not canceled within the term’s first 72 hours, the partner will be billed for the remainder of the subscription term.

  • Adding and reducing seats

Sticking with that 72-hour period, seats can be added at any time during a term but can only be reduced within the first 72 hours of the term or within the first 72 hours after a mid-term addition of seats.

When you add seats within a billing cycle, there will be a prorated charge for those seats on your next invoice.

  1. How will it affect the CSP incentives program?

The key impact of NCE on the CSP incentives program is all about knowing when to switch from legacy to NCE. Microsoft has announced that they will discontinue the legacy CSP incentives program as of November 30, 2022. This means that in order to continue earning incentives, MSPs will have to make the switch prior to the end of November.

You can decide when to migrate your customers over to NCE prior to the end of November. We recommend choosing the same date for everyone and giving yourself enough time before the end of legacy incentives to simplify the transition and ensure there are no gaps in your earning period.

  1. What does NCE really mean for MSPs?

While big changes always mean some growing pains, ultimately, NCE for license-based subscriptions is meant to offer MSPs new sales capabilities, deliver operational efficiencies and drive long-term customer commitment.

Overall, NCE will help partners strategically position their businesses for future growth with more sustainable revenue streams in the CSP program and less licensing complexity and cost.

  1. Next steps

As of March 7, NCE offers are available in our partner portal so we’re prepared to get you started with NCE.

If you don’t already have one, a great next step is creating a formal plan to help ensure a smooth transition for you and your clients.

Here are a few things that could help during these next steps:

  • Move all your clients to NCE on the same date to avoid having to manage many different anniversary dates and subscription types. Once you choose a date, be sure to communicate this to your clients so you are all properly prepared.
  • Use a documentation tool like SyncMonkey to input anniversary dates and set alerts to stay on top of upcoming renewals.
  • Create monthly and annual products in your PSA tool to differentiate between monthly and annual subscriptions. This will help you invoice customers who have different terms for the same product.
  1. How Sherweb can help

We get it—there’s a lot to take in when it comes to NCE. Don’t worry! We’re here to help you through it all. As a value-added cloud solutions provider and Microsoft Gold partner, Sherweb is well-versed in the Microsoft ecosystem and we’re here for you as you make the switch to NCE.

For a comprehensive guide to NCE, check out 6 tips for navigating Microsoft’s New Commerce Experience. Here, our Microsoft experts share their top tips for navigating and minimizing the impacts of NCE.

We can guide you through NCE (and more)

Beyond NCE, we want to help you get the most from the CSP program. Need help navigating NCE or the Microsoft ecosystem?

Not a Sherweb partner yet? ur in-house experts on the Microsoft ecosystem consult with partners to make sure they’re making the most of their Microsoft relationship, as well as provide a multitude of other resources to help your cloud business grow.  Set your managed services and Microsoft 365 offering up for success by joining our exclusive partner program. Check out our Partner Guide for more information.

Written by The Sherweb Team Collaborators @ Sherweb

As a value-added cloud solutions provider, Sherweb is dedicated to providing more for its partners, direct customers and extended network. The Sherweb Blog is just one example of how we make this happen, and our team members frequently collaborate on content to ensure it's as beneficial as possible for our readers. If you like what you see here, we strongly encourage you to subscribe!