News Analysis: Infor Flex Reflects Proactive Maintenance Policy

Infor announced two new maintenance options for its customers today. These actions represent a proactive approach to provide its customers with new ownership models.  The key offerings include:

  • Flex Upgrade: customers move to the latest application version, no change to existing maintenance and support costs, little or no license fees
    POV: Support and maintenance fees should often cover the rights to future versions.  The key issue - can my vendor innovate quickly enough? Customer's should find progress in Infor's investment in Open SOA and MyDay.  These solutions will help clients find a path to modernization from their existing applications.   Flex upgrade allows customers to move at their own pace.
  • Flex Exchange: switch to another related Infor application of similar size and scope, no change to existing maintenance and support costs, nominal transaction fees
    POV: This offering provides access to Infor's portfolio.  A customer on one ERP product can migrate to another product with minimal switching costs.  Only a handful of vendors allow this today.  Imagine buying PeopleSoft ERP and switching for Oracle EBS.  Only one other vendor is unique in this - Microsoft Dynamics provides this today by allowing customers to move between its acquired products.

Each offering also provides discounted and bundled project services and incentive pricing for additional users, modules, and extended applications.
The bottom line - Infor Flex provides unique value in a rapidly consolidating market
In many recent surveys, the top customer priorities for 2009 include upgrading, updating, or replacing legacy applications.  Many enterprises face decisions as to which vendors to keep and upgrade with; and which vendors to jettison and migrate from.  Amidst this move to upgrade, many vendors have imposed maintenance support increases or vendor imposed upgrade time lines based on support costs.  Infor's policy adds a fresh perspective by offering choice, value, and predictability.  In fact, these new policies may engender good will among loyal customers and be just enough incentive to keep competitors from poaching existing accounts.   The only thing that would make this offering better would be flex down options for lower tiered options akin to third party maintenance, but that might be asking too much!
Your POV
Are you ready to flex?  What Infor products do you own?  Would you benefit from Flex UPgrade or Flex Exchange? Please post or send on to rwang0 at gmail dot com and we’ll keep your anonymity.

Related links

See additional coverage from different POV's
Infor's Flex Release
Frank Scavo's Favorable View
Vinnie Mirchandani's Preference for Flex Down
Dennis Howlett's Pragmatic Perspective
2009622 IDG News Service - Chris Kanaracus “Infor Rolls out New ‘Flex’ Upgrade Policy”

Copyright © 2009 R Wang. All rights reserved.