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Favourable software licences for Swiss universities

The SWITCH foundation has concluded a further three-year framework agreement with Microsoft for software licences. SWITCH carries out negotiations on behalf of the entire Swiss academic community, allowing universities to save around CHF 1.5 million every year in licensing fees compared with standalone solutions. The new agreement takes effect from 1 March 2016.

Published on 02.12.2015

SWITCH and Microsoft are extending their cooperation, and on 27 November 2015 they signed a further framework agreement on Microsoft licences through to 2019. As well as ensuring more favourable terms for software procurement, this also allows Swiss universities to save time since SWITCH handles the direct negotiations with Microsoft. As the partner of Switzerland’s universities, SWITCH represents their interests in software procurement. Immo Noack, who is responsible for this at SWITCH, said: “When it comes to standard software, framework agreements are the only way to secure better terms, thanks to the higher order volumes and simplified processes. Standalone agreements no longer make any sense, since the cost pressure has ramped up markedly for software producers and universities alike.”

Benefiting the whole academic community
SWITCH and Microsoft first concluded an agreement in 2012, and in the three years since Swiss universities have saved around CHF 4.5 million in licensing fees. This agreement benefits the entire academic community in Switzerland.

SWITCH as the partner of Swiss universities
Universities have similar needs when it comes to buying standard software products. SWITCH plays a coordinating role, bringing these interests together and acting as a central contact for suppliers on the universities’ behalf. The terms negotiated in this manner are transparent and applicable for all universities. SWITCH maintains a dialogue with the universities’ licensing officers at conferences and via a community portal. The universities can have their say in the process, while also profiting from simplified procedures and more favourable terms.