License - How to cope with users on longer leave (maternity, sabbatical etc)


Hi everyone,


we are new to Office 365. Having purchased every user a M365 E5 license.

Some users do not want to use their account on their leave so it is not necessary to let them use a license (especially the expensive one)

I wrote a script to remove their license if they are deactivated. But how can i preserve the files (OneDrive / Exchange) until they come back? Can i automatically put their "files" on hold?


Best regards


2 Replies

If you plan to continue using those accounts at some point, best leave them licensed. You can switch them to a "lower" plan, such as E1, depending on the features you have enabled.


Technically, you can put a hold on the account, then remove the license without worrying data will be lost. But that's a violation of the license agreement, which states that you require licensed users for holds. The other option is to use the Inactive mailboxes functionality, but that requires removing the user object, which makes the "recover" operation more complicated. Lastly, some organizations convert the mailbox to a shared one, which doesnt require licenses (again, depending on the features you have - if you put it on hold, you still need a license).

@Vasil Michev Thanks for your response. Then i will get together with our license team to calculate if it worth the effort.