Shared service saves £3.5m for St Edmundsbury Council and Forest Heath District Council


Both councils realised that in order to balance their budget, they would need to consider new ways of working. By forming a partnership and delivering all services from one single team of staff, they were able to make savings of £3.5m.


The challenge for Bytes was to propose the best way forward for licensing the various existing software requirements across Microsoft, Citrix, VMware, Adobe Sophos and Veeam at the lowest cost possible. Bytes needed to consider the varying technology used by the individual entities now and in the future, the renewal dates and usage in order to advise on suitable solutions going forward and support the new shared services entity in negotiations with software vendors

Bytes have enabled us to consolidate our existing software contracts and get us the best deal possible on any new software purchases.

James Wager, Infrastructure Support Manager

The Bytes Solution

Bytes presented a number of options for their existing Microsoft Select Agreements, with short or longer term gains, before going with the decision to opt for an Enterprise Subscription Agreement (ESA). This subscription only licensing agreement offered the lowest cost with a fixed unit price point, allowing for the flexibility to increase and decrease license quantities throughout the term without incurring penalties. Technologies included were System Center Suite, Lync, Exchange, Windows Enterprise and Office which allowed for consolidation of across the remaining software vendors and negotiations to co-term with a single date for future simplicity.


The new ICT infrastructure delivers an efficient and coherent service to residents and a solid platform to build on. In particular, the benefits that come with the Microsoft subscription based licensing enabled the delivery of new groundbreaking technologies. These included: a consolidation of software vendors used with co-termed renewal dates for future simplicity and buying power, migrating from Windows XP to Windows 7, Lync to enhance collaboration through IM, PowerPoint and video and voice conferencing, continual OS, virtualised desktops and PC’s – consolation to Hyper-V from VMware producing good cost reductions, achieving PSN compliance, along with a 400% increase in Microsoft Training Day Vouchers negotiated.