How to Optimise your Oracle Q4 purchase

In today’s interview we look at some great tactics that will help optimise your Oracle Q4 Purchase.  

You can read the full transcript of the interview with Jane McCulloch below:-

Kay: Hi I’m Kay from Madora Consulting. How do you know if you’ve got an optimum deal when you make your Oracle Q4 purchase? If like many customers you are hanging on until Oracle’s year end to make your  Oracle Q4 purchase  then Jane McCulloch, director at Madora Consulting is going to share some good advice with us. 

Jane, could you explain to our listeners, from your many years of Oracle experience, just how an Oracle customer can optimise their Q4 purchase.

Jane: Yes. We’ve done this quite a lot for customers where we’ve helped them to negotiate great deals particularly in Q4, because it’s always the best time to buy from Oracle. 

Do you have any short or medium term projects for Oracle you could bring forward? If you’ve got more purchases together, then that will generally lead to more discount.

Consolidate your projects

Do you have any short or medium term projects for Oracle you could bring forward? If you’ve got more purchases together, then that will generally lead to more discount. If you’ve got any projects, perhaps, for other database vendors that you could maybe make an Oracle project. Then again, if the price was right and it led to more discount, that might be something that you could consider.

Are there any other parts of your organization such as finance or whoever, thinking about application purchases, even in the medium term. Perhaps they’re thinking about extra financial users, or perhaps a different module in HR. All of those purchases could be pooled in, really anything that’s a possibility for a future purchase. Then finally, and what seems to be popular at the moment is, is anybody in your organization considering Cloud, Cloud technology of any kind? 

Why would we be asking these questions? Well lot’s of times, different departments in companies don’t talk to each other, particularly in the larger organizations, I guess.  People work in isolation, perhaps not aware of other projects that are going on within an organization, and perhaps not aware of what else procurement or other conversations that people having with Oracle. Perhaps think about the purchases that are going in the next few months that could all be brought into a potential May deal. 

Oracle suggests that product lines are different divisions, but generally if you’ve got a significant size purchase you can think about getting better discounts, because senior management would be involved in a purchase if it was a large purchase.

Obviously you don’t want to share anything with Oracle in the first place. Perhaps you’d be thinking about negotiating your smaller deals and seeing what you’re going to get in terms of discount as a baseline. Then perhaps start thinking about, “Right, if we pull these deals together into a larger deal, how much more discount could we get?”

Oracle also likes to hear that you’re using an “Oracle’s preferred vendor” or we’re looking at “Oracle First”. Again, it helps them to justify when they have to put approvals through to senior management. 

If you are looking to do an Oracle Q4 purchase get it benchmarked for your industry sector

Be a reference customer

The other thing you can do is think about, perhaps, a reference, if you’re agreeing to be in a reference. That always helps, and often reference customers do get better discounts.

Obviously, you need to be sure that you can get any purchases in Q4 signed off by your organization. So, if you are in a position to bring things forward, it’s definitely worth talking to your Oracle sales rep and asking, “If I’m willing to bring things forward, we really don’t need this til past August or September, but if I’m willing to bring it forward, would there be any possibility of a better deal?”

Use Oracle’s newer products as Leverage

The other thing is, there are some products year after year that Oracle thinks are strategic and are always trying to sell more of. The reps will get paid better incentives. For example, Exadata and they get good commissions if you like for that, better commission. Also Cloud, there’s very definitely a focus on Cloud for this financial year.

Benchmark your discount

The other thing you can do is benchmark the discount you’re getting with other people in your own sector. Perhaps you could talk to an Oracle partner or somebody who’s independent, like ourselves, at Madora. Then once you’ve decided what your baseline discount is, what is your level of discount, then look at what you could potentially get. How you could get a better deal on top of that. You’ve got your discount based on any extra purchases, but then are there any other things you could do?

Use non-standard terms to your advantage

Change User minimums

Perhaps you could think about test and development environments, changing the user minimums, could you get them reduced from 25 per processor to 10? Now, obviously, it’s not going to change the pricing discount levels, but it would reduce the overall cost because you wouldn’t need to buy as many named users for your test and dev environments as you would normally.

Ring fence an application

The other thing is, if you’ve got a particular application, you could perhaps say, “Well, the technology that underpins it, we’ll only use on that application,” so that becomes a limited use license. So, again, you wouldn’t be able to to transfer it anywhere else, but if you know it’s definitely going to be used with one particular application, then that might incur extra discount.

Consider Term licences and the application lifetime

The other thing you could do is think about term licenses, and often people buy term licenses, and end up renewing them year after year. That doesn’t work out cheaper, because your support of maintenance is always based on the full price, and then you’re buying over and over again.

It’s not efficient and it’s not cheaper, but if you’ve got a short-term project, is it only a short term project and you know very well within two or three years time, this project won’t be required anymore, and therefore, you won’t be needing the licenses. Maybe it’s a possibility to think about a one, or two, or three-year term license. Those are cheaper and do incur better discounts.

Negotiate Price holds

The final thing, really, I think, would be to look for price hold for all of the projects that you’ve bought, and also any projects that you haven’t bought, but you think you might need in the future. For example, if you were buying database and partitioning, is there a possibility that we might need some of the management packs in the future? We don’t want to use them now but we might want them in the future. You could add database, partitioning, diagnostic and tuning packs all onto a price hold and get the same level of discount for future purchases, maybe over the next one, two or three years where you are getting the same level of discount. Even if it’s only a small purchase. Although you’re spending a lot of money on your deal at the moment, maybe in six months time, you might need two or three processors more, or you might need another server, and may need a few processors. You could get those, then, at the same price that you bought for the whole large deal.

Speak to an expert

Obviously Madora Consulting has been providing these types of services for some time, and we’ve got lots of experience and lots of knowledge of what’s possible, what other people have done, and how you can best get a deal from Oracle. So, if you do feel you need help, then give us a shout. Okay, thank you very much.

Kay: Jane, thank you so much for that great information. If any listeners would like to contact Jane for any further advice, on making an Oracle Q4 purchase she can be contacted via madora.co.uk website. Thank you, Jane.