Complex contracts are stalling software procurement, says survey

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Microsoft, which conducted the survey, is calling for industry change in the software procurement process.

“As the IT industry has matured, instead of becoming easier, the experience of the software procurement process has become more and more challenging for customers,” said Dervish Tayyip, Head of Legal for Microsoft in the UK.

“This is not unexpected as buying software isn’t as straightforward as more tangible purchases such as machinery or raw materials," he said. "Our customers have welcomed some of the added flexibility in licensing in recent years, but this has come at the expense of greater complexity. There’s clearly a need for industry-wide change and we believe this can result in a far better experience for customers.”

Increased flexibility in contracting can improve speed and efficiency of software procurement, according to 80% of respondents who found this currently slows down the process within their company. Greater confidence will also come if vendors can clearly explain their accountability in contracts. Seventy-two percent felt lack of vendor accountability had a negative effect on the deal.

Microsoft said it is working to deliver better terms through focusing on speed, lower transactional costs, balanced allocation of risk and more customer-oriented contracts.