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The announcement regarding self-service purchase capabilities for Power Platform products??

Regular Contributor

Just found this in the message center: " Self-service purchase capabilities for Power Platform products will be available for commercial cloud customers starting 11/19. Today, individuals within your organization are unable to purchase subscriptions or assign licenses for themselves or their departments without contacting you, their admin. Based on customer demand, we’ll soon be enabling self-service purchase and license management capabilities, which will allow users within your organization to purchase products directly, starting with the Power Platform family of products: Power BI, PowerApps, and Flow."

 

Does anyone have more info on this? Does this mean that end users willing to pay for a license will be able to connect company data to other sources and bypass their admins altogether? I'm finding this to be a bit insane - would love to hear other feedback. @adam deltinger   @Chris Webb adding you both to this as you always provide great insights. Thanks in advance!

64 Replies

@Kelly E I was taken by surprise myself, as there has been no communication on this as a post here, on blogs, or anywhere else!

 

Further down, the message centre post says (emphasis mine):

 

The self-service purchase capability arrives automatically and is not configurable, so there’s no action you need to take.

 

Being "not configurable" is bizarre. What if our company purchasing is centralised and no one gets to purchase anything without a formal process?

 

 

 

@Abhimanyu Singh : Hopefully not-configurable means only the function in the Admin service. Not the self-service pruchase function at all. 

 

This was a major shock to me and my team. This is asking for Shadow IT. Not to mention data sprawl and data protection issues. Can we get some more info from MS?
And..."starting with the Power Platform family of products". What else is to come?

Monitoring billing isn't enough if this is to be non-configurable. We need more tools as admins.

@Kelly E I was coming in to post this exact thing. I'm trying to keep an open mind, but it's extremely concerning. The Power team is going a bit too far in their scoping of services - I know this year is the year of upsell (read the slides from the Inspire conference) to try to get customers to upgrade to E5, or more fully embrace the PowerApps, but companies are cautious and need to know how this will affect their data security.

 

How will billing work? Already I have to keep checking if someone has created a DevOps Organization tied to our AD, and warn them that when the month is up, they will lose their work since we will not pay for anything outside our enterprise agreement - it won't be approved in billing. So now I've got another place to watch?

 

I'm all for removing silos of information, being able to easily integrate new tech - I love Office365/Azure/Power applications, but this seems like it will create silos in some companies - especially the ones with strict enforcement policies. Not all 'strict' companies are GCC/Edu tenants.

 

'Lots of customer demand' - convince me of the scenarios.

I agree with the others that this is a shock. I also am a huge proponent of new functionality of MS365, but one of my biggest headaches today is the sprawl of individual users and managers buying their own software!

 

We have an internal policy for centralized contracts and license purchases, however some users still go out and buy things on their own.  A recent audit of Adobe found 35 users paying full retail price for subscriptions using their company credit card, while we buy it under our enterprise contract at a significant discount. For our org, all of these random credit card purchases ultimately get billed to my IT budgets, yet I have no control over them and cannot cancel them until the existing annual subscription expires.  This announcement now seems like Microsoft is going to be the next cloud I have to continually chase, especially since we are currently giving PowerBI to select power user groups. 

 

At the very least, an opt-in or opt-out toggle for the tenant would allow us to maintain our policy standards!

 

Not giving tenant admins control over this is wrong Microsoft!

This will definitely create chaos. It's not about limiting the users to be productive but we need to have this under control. At least an admin setting to enable or disable this feature.

Really bad communication of this change as there are so many unanswered questions - what happens if the user leaves, what happens for orgs that mandate central PO control, what about software asset management?

Thank you for sharing this as I had missed the announcement in the Admin center. This is indeed a terrible idea. 

@Kelly E  Microsoft Azure Active Directory admins within the customer organisation will have visibility into self-service purchases through the Microsoft 365 admin centre. Later, if the procurement department for the organisation wants to consolidate the subscription into its central agreement, the admin can assign the users replacement licenses procured through the central agreement (EA, MPSA, Microsoft Customer Agreement via CSP, MOSA, etc.) and ask the end user to cancel their original subscription.

Admins can’t turn off this capability. It's recommend customers use internal company guidelines and documentation to ensure employees know what is and is not acceptable for use within their organisations.

I'm not sure that this is the best way forward personally from MS, but I can see what they are trying to do, cut down on the admin for users who are trying products out. I'd expect that this would be rolled out to more product sets in the future so maybe we need to look at policy to prevent unwanted spend rather than rely on the technical prevention. 

I hope that helps.

@Kelly E My view on the matter: https://www.petri.com/office-365-users-have-credit-cards-ready

 

It's a bad idea. Perhaps it would be acceptable if Microsoft includes a switch to disable the feature for a tenant, but rolling something out without giving tenants any control over how their users interact with a third-party (Microsoft in this case) is simply unacceptable.

This is unflippin believable. I am usually on board with virtually anything Microsoft has been doing as of late. But I agree with many others on this forum that this will create chaos and more Shadow IT of which i need neither of. Please Microsoft, add a toggle to allow or disallow this at a tenant level. Admins should NEVER be forced into a setting that could allow users to purchase things on their own.

@ agree with everyone else.  I can't believe they're rolling this out without the ability for admins to disable it.  We centrally control licenses and assign then to people who need them, not want them.  We don't want people to sign up and buy their own.  They'll attempt to expense them to the company (we won't pay), and it may give them access to features we've specifically decided they shouldn't have.  This is a terrible "feature".

@Kelly E 

This is an underhanded money grab by Microsoft to allow uneducated users to bypass corporate spending controls and go the Shadow IT route. Microsoft knows this will happen and is taking advantage of those employees who don't know better. Reconciling this nightmare after the fact and enforcing through policy not controls is idiotic and potentially a deal breaker. As with the other here you should head over and vote for the addition of a binary control to turn on or off this "feature". 

This is an unacceptable practice
(And potentially a dangerous precedent)

Whilst some organisations may well see this as a positive move and indeed they have the right to welcome it

It should in every case be for the individual tenant to have the option to allow or disallow purchase decisions being made at the user level

The simple way to deal fairly with the interests of all stakeholders here is to provide an opt-in (or opt-out) button
At the tenant level

If Microsoft do wish to persist with this
Then at the very least they should include
In bold print a clear warning to individuals
At the point of purchase That they may be contravening company policy in making a purchase leading to Potential personal financial loss and/or disciplinary action (perhaps including dismissal)

Maybe they could include a configurable text box for the tenant to have the option to personalise the statement to convey the company’s policy?