Microsoft Third Party Support.


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Microsoft Third Party Support

What is Microsoft Third Party Support?

Microsoft third party support is software support for enterprise Microsoft applications and cloud services that replaces Microsoft vendor software support that is often packaged with Microsoft Software Assurance (benefits retired Feb 1 2023), a 3 year Enterprise Agreement or sold separately under a Microsoft Premier or MS Unified Support contract.
Microsoft 3rd party support clients typically select a third party to attain more responsive support for less cost than what Microsoft provides.

In addition, Microsoft third party support is designed to match the needs of your enterprise by providing comprehensive support coverage for you entire Microsoft portfolio. As your business transforms to utilize the power of the cloud, so must your systems, your processes, and the skills of your people. To succeed in today’s way of working, you need your technology to evolve with you and you need your support to do the same.

A service level agreement (SLA) defines the level of service you expect from Microsoft 3rd party support, laying out the metrics by which service delivery is measured, as well as remedies or financial penalties should agreed-upon service levels not be achieved. It is a critical component of any Microsoft third party support contract.

The Microsoft Third Party Support SLA should help maximize your enterprise’s uptime by ensuring:

  • faster response times
  • shorter time to resolution

What is Microsoft third party support

History of MS Third Party Support

History of Third Party Support

Third-party support for applications and databases from vendors such as Oracle and SAP has been a viable alternative to annual vendor maintenance and support contracts for years. That market was disrupted in 2005 as third-party support providers got started.

Some enterprises jumped at the chance to reduce annual support expense and get a better experience. Those early adopters of third-party support paved the way for billions of dollars in total savings across thousands of enterprises over the last 18 years. Independent 3rd party support services are going mainstream. Gartner predicts that the third-party software support market will grow from $351 million in 2019 to $1.05 billion by the end of 2023 — a 200% increase.

SPVM [Sourcing, Procurement and Vendor Management] leaders are now acknowledging third-party support as an established option.

Independent third-party software support providers give organizations a 50% lower-cost alternative to the escalating maintenance, support and consulting service fees charged by IBM, Microsoft, Oracle and SAP. Independent 3rd party support providers are not authorized channel partners. They offer independent support.

The independent third party support providers have no relationship with the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) or independent software vendor (ISV) and, as a result, cannot access intellectual property, software updates, firmware updates or security advisories, or obtain OEM/ISV Level 3 or backline support.

Benefits of Microsoft Third Party Support

Reduce Microsoft support costsEnterprises using Microsoft third party support are able to save up to 50% by replacing Microsoft Unified (formerly Premier) Support. This savings falls immediately to the bottom line in year 1.  Future years cost avoidance is significant when overlayed to enterprise Microsoft roadmaps.

Increase operational efficiency – Microsoft third party support is now mainstream and enterprises have found that resolving issues 2x faster than Microsoft lowers critical outage downtime, lessens IT staff and enduser frustration and provides a better overall experience across an enterprise’s Microsoft product portfolio.

Fill Microsoft tech talent shortages – Get hard-to-find Microsoft software expertise with no recruiting required. Partner with a Microsoft 3rd party support provider to gain access to a deep bench of seasoned Microsoft professionals dedicated to helping you streamline operations and reduce operational burdens.

Avoid expensive Microsoft software upgrades – Don’t implement a Microsoft software upgrade just to stay fully supported. Take control of your IT roadmap and migrate or upgrade on your terms.  Enterprises can achieve strategic IT flexibility and avoid business disruptions by switching to Microsoft third party support.

Extend the life of Microsoft investments – Maximize the lifespan of your enterprise’s Microsoft software investments with the help of a Microsoft third party support provider. Existing, stable Microsoft software environments, customized to meet unique enterprise needs, can be run for years to come.

Microsoft third party support benefits

MS 3rd Party Support funds innovation

Fund Innovation with MS 3rd Party Support

From an enterprise’s perspective, cost is the most obvious difference between Microsoft OEM support and third party support services. Most organizations that switch to Microsoft third party support quickly save at least 30% on annual support fees. Additional costs can be reduced or avoided, yielding up to 60% in total savings. They include the costs of self-support when the Microsoft’s support is unresponsive or not comprehensive enough, and the cost of forced upgrades or migrations just to stay on a fully supported release.

Third party Microsoft support also extends the life of Microsoft software releases by providing support for many years after the vendor stops providing full support. 

More than just cost avoidance, clients of third party support for Microsoft enterprise software, have more agility and freedom to pursue – and fund – innovation. When an enterprise is no longer locked into a vendor-dictated roadmap, it liberates budget and resources to pursue its own business priorities.
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