FAQs: Microsoft Program Changes on TechSoup

February 26, 2018



Q: Why is Microsoft making these changes?

Microsoft’s goal is to enable even more nonprofit organisations to have an even great impact. However, it takes a new philanthropy model to sustainably scale software donations in a subscription (or cloud) model.

Microsoft’s new Tech for Social Impact team is organised as a social enterprise where profits will be reinvested into providing more support for nonprofits.

See also https://blogs.microsoft.com/on-the-issues/?p=57515


Q: Is Microsoft changing eligibility requirements for its donated products?

No, eligibility for donated offers through the Enclude Tech Donations Programme remains the same. Microsoft maintains one of the broadest definitions of eligibility of all technology donors. Unfortunately, there are still organisation types that would like to request a donation but do not qualify. For these organisations, we hope that other offers on the Enclude Tech Donations may be helpful. Rest assured that our partner, Techsoup inform all of our donors about who else is eager to find an affordable way to use their products.


Q: Will there be eligibility requirements for the discounted products? If so, will they be the same as for donated products?

At this time, our understanding is that the same eligibility requirements used for donated products will apply to organisations seeking discounted products.



Q: Can you explain the change being made to Microsoft “title group” restrictions?

A title group consists of all products that essentially serve the same purpose. For example, all Windows operating system products are in one title group. Currently, eligible organisations can request up to 50 licenses per title group from a maximum of 10 title groups. There are more than 35 title groups. For more information: https://www.techsoup.org/support/articles-and-how-tos/microsoft-eligibility.

Starting April 1, 2018, eligible organisations can choose among all of the Microsoft donated products without being limited to 10 title groups. Unless otherwise stated, they can request a maximum of 50 licenses of each product within a two-year period. Server products continue to have product specific license limits.


Q: What is the difference between “standard” and “premium” products?

Premium products are usually referred to as “professional” or “enterprise,” such as Office Professional or Visio Professional. Standard products are usually referred to as “standard,” such as Office Standard or Visio Standard.


Q: What is “on-premises” software?

“On-premises” refers to software products that are installed on a computer versus products that are offered as “software as a service” by subscription. See also https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/On-premises_software



Q: I cannot use cloud-based products at this time. Will I still be able to get Microsoft on-premises software on April 1?

Eligible organisations will still be able to request donations of standard on-premises Microsoft products, for example Office Standard 2016 and Visio Standard, through ENCLUDE after April 1.

Premium on-premises Microsoft products, such as Office Enterprise 2016 and Visio Professional, will be available as discounted products only, starting April 1. Our partner TechSoup will be launching discount programmes to provide you with the full range of offers. We aim to make these discount offers available to you as soon after April 1 as possible.


Q: Is the donation programme being phased out?

No. Microsoft will continue donating technology to nonprofits for the foreseeable future. Over the last three fiscal years, Microsoft has donated over $1 billion each year in cash and services to nonprofits. That commitment is unchanged. In fact, Microsoft hopes to triple the number of nonprofits it reaches over the next three years by providing a broader range of licensing options.

Our partner TechSoup works with over 100 donor partners that remain committed to collaborating to offer donations and deeply discounted offers to nonprofits. We're always expanding what we offer to better meet the needs of nonprofits. We don't intend to let up.


Q: What if I need more on-premises software licenses?

If you need more on-premises software licenses than are available to you as donations through Enclude, or if you need products that are no longer available as donations, you will be able to request nonprofit discounted software licenses for those same products through Enclude soon after April 1. You can also get licenses for those same products from other authorised charity resellers or directly from Microsoft.


Q: Do these changes mean that our partner TechSoup will be closing down?

No! We remain committed to connecting nonprofits with the resources they need to fulfill their missions. Our partner TechSoup works very closely with all of our donor partners to ensure that we continue to support their philanthropic programmes as they evolve with the changing tech landscape. Their business model and programmes must also keep evolving in order to fulfill their mission.

You will see new programmes and services offered by Enclude to better support you. We will look for new ways to bring value to nonprofits and to technology providers, and we will continue to keep the fees for our services as low as possible.