Microsoft's Annual Maintenance Fee for Dynamics GP (Great Plains)If you buy Microsoft Dynamics GP, you must pay, up front, an "annual maintenance fee" to Microsoft. This annual maintenance fee will be due and payable to Microsoft each year. The fee is a percentage multiplied by your "system list price", which is what Microsoft shows in their records as the amount you have cumulatively paid for all Dynamics GP software licenses, modules, etc...
How does it benefit you?
- When a new version of Dynamics GP is released (once every couple of years), you will receive the new software for free if you have paid your annual maintenance.
- It gives you access to Microsoft's CustomerSource website, which includes tools to help you with Dynamics GP.
- It gives you access to Microsoft's online training on Dynamics (available from within CustomerSource).
- Some of the maintenance plans (see below) include some prepaid support cases with Microsoft.
What does it cost?
Microsoft has 3 different "Maintenance Plans" that you can choose from:
- An Business Ready Enhancement Plan
- A Business Ready Advantage Plan
- A Business Ready Advantage Plus Plan
Every year, if you want to, you can pick a different maintenance plan to be on. The primary difference between the plans is the number of prepaid support cases with Microsoft's Dynamics GP support call center that are included:
|Maintenance Plan||Number of Included Prepaid Support Cases||Annual Cost|
|Business Advantage Plan||6||18%|
|Business Advantage Plus Plan||Unlimited||25%|
Want more details? Visit Microsoft's website:
Is it worth upgrading to the more expensive maintenance plans or should you be on the Enhancement Plan? Ask yourself these key questions:
- Do I want to call Microsoft's support desk for help rather than your local Dynamics GP consultant? The prepaid support cases included with the more expensive maintenance plans may not do you any good if you prefer to call your local Dynamics GP consultant.
- How does the money work out? Let's say your "system list price" is $20,000 (the amount you have historically paid for the Dynamics GP software and all licenses). The extra 2% cost of the Business Advantage Plan equates to $400. If you are on the Enhancement Plan, you can still call Microsoft's support desk and give them a credit card and they will charge you $125 for a support case. So the $400 extra cost of the Business Advantage Plan is worth it if you think you will use all 6 prepaid support cases as then your cost per case is only $65.
What if I don't pay it one year?
Microsoft can't make you pay it every year. So, if you don't need anything from Microsoft, you can get away with not paying it. But, you won't be able to get anything from Microsoft if you have not paid it:
- You won't be able to buy more user licenses
- You won't be able to buy any additional modules
- You won't receive the software updates
- You won't have access to CustomerSource
- You won't be able to call Microsoft's technical support call center
If you go a few years without paying it, and then you need something from Microsoft, your choices will be:
- Pay Microsoft the current year's annual maintenance plus a "penalty" because you let your annual maintenance lapse.
- You can re-purchase the Dynamics GP software (as if you were a new customer) if that is cheaper than the first option.