The Microsoft Agreement Project Board met today. Rob Anderson presented the options that have been identified. I agreed with the preferred option, which is essentially a role-based model covering desktop, client access and server products.

There was extensive discussion about issues such as perpetual versus subscription licensing, support, upgrade rights, capital versus revenue (or "Admin" as Roy Marshall calls it) and central registration of licences.

Other items included benchmarking - versus other sectors and within the public sector - and communications strategy.

Next steps will include a Workshop to identify the detailed requirements. There are many issues still to consider; I am concerned, for example, about inter-organisational roles, and personal usage, but didn't raise these as there will be ample opportunity through the workshop and Project Team.

As a prototype for shaping public sector engagement with suppliers, this seems to be shaping-up pretty well.

As part of our continuing consultation with the private sector, I met with Mark Raleigh and Gerry Gebel, of Burton Group, to discuss a prospective relationship with Socitm to provide added membership value in access to research expertise and material and, possibly, co-operative research.

Geoff, Shane, Priya and I met to discuss the learning from Priya's MBA assignment based on Newham ICT's Portfolio Management service. Geoff had drafted suggested ways in which the service should be developed, based on Priya's recommendations, to address Executive and Management feedback, which we agreed.

As we develop, in Socitm, our engagement with the Government IT profession, I still think that MBA studies offer the most rounded approach to professional development for management and future executives, and represent very good value to sponsoring employers, especially where studies can be grounded in their own environments.