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Service Update: Vault Former Employee End of Life – Aug. 15, 2022

Cumulus Global 15 Years of ServiceService Update: Vault Former Employee End of Life: VFE Licenses will no longer be available as of January 15, 2023.

As previously announced by Google, free Vault Former Employee (VFE) licenses will no longer be available as of January 15, 2023. To maintain data for past employees, these licenses will transition to Archive User Licenses with compatible Google Workspace subscriptions.  This transition impacts fees beginning in January 2023.

Background

With the launch of Google Workspace, VFE license were replaced by Archive User Licenses.  Existing VFE customers with free licenses were grandfathered.  Google’s original plan to phase our VFE licenses by the end of January 2021 were delayed.  Google recently announced a definitive timeline.  Cumulus Global has also sent informational emails to all of our clients with VFE licenses.

To prevent a loss of data, you should plan your transition to Google Workspace Archive User Licensing (AUL).  Note that AUL is a paid service running with monthly per user fees of $4 to $7.

Impact

If you take no action, you will either:

  1. Lose access to the VFE accounts and data; or
  2. Transition from a free service to the paid AUL service.

Archive User Licenses are not available with G Suite. Therefore, you must transition to Google Workspace to use AULs. 

The cost of AULs varies based on your Google Workspace subscription:

  • Google Workspace Business
    • Plus: $4/user/month
  • Google Workspace Enterprise
    • Standard: $5/user/month
    • Plus: $7/user/month

Note that AULs are NOT available with other Google Workspace licenses.

Action Plan

We will help you with the following steps:

  1. Decide if you need (or want) to continue keeping accounts for past employees.  If so, for how long will you keep the data and how many accounts do you need to license?
    1. Remove accounts no longer needed
    2. Export accounts to preserve data, as appropriate
  2. Assess your current G Suite or Google Workspace subscription for licensing and compatibility
    1. Plan your transition to Google Workspace if you are currently on G Suite Basic, Business, or Enterprise
    2. If you are on Google Workspace, determine if you need to upgrade licenses for AUL compatibility
    3. Confirm that your VFE licenses are now a free trial of Archive User Licenses and the trial end date
    4. Understand the impact on your monthly or annual costs
    5. Determine if you are eligible for transition incentive discounts
  3. Transition, as needed, to Google Workspace before your AUL Trial End Date.

Financial Impact

  • In addition to the per user fees for the Archive User Licenses themselves, you may need to upgrade your Google Workspace subscription to ensure access to AUL services.
  • For existing customers, Cumulus Global will begin invoicing for Archive User Licenses in January.  For those on an annual agreement, the fees will be prorated accordingly.

Please contact us by email, via our website, or by scheduling time directly with one of our Cloud advisors, with any questions or concerns regarding this Service Update covering Vault Former Employee end of life.

Google Workspace: Key Transition Dates

Google workspaceWith the restructuring of G Suite into Google Workspace, Google is providing more service tiers and subscription options and you will need to decide which subscription best meets your needs and budget.

Here are some key dates to keep in mind as you plan your transition.

Your Renewal Date

Cumulus Global

  • If your G Suite subscription is an annual, promotional, or multi-year commitment, whether you pay annually or monthly, your renewal date determines when you need to transition from G Suite to Google Workspace.

December 31, 2020

  • Incentive discounts for early moves to Google Workspace expire. We must complete the change by this date for discounts to apply.  Discounts are available for 1, 2, and 3 year commitments. (Learn more about Google Workspace)
  • Vault Former Employee (VFE) licenses for non-Postini customers expire.  Licenses will convert to paid Archive User (AU) licenses. (see our blog post on this topic)

January 15, 2020

  • If your renewal date is before January 15, 2020, you have the option of renewing your G Suite subscription for one more year or transitioning to Google Workspace.
  • If your renewal date is after January 15, 2020, you must switch to a Google Workspace subscription at renewal if you have not already done so.

March 31. 2020

  • This is the last date G Suite Customers on monthly flex plans can continue with their G Suite subscription. If your G Suite subscription is a monthly flex and you have not yet switched to a Google Workspace subscription, the transition will happen automatically on April 1, 2020.

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  • Vault Former Employee (VFE) licenses for past-Postini customers will deprecate. While the date is not yet set, Google will provide at least 60 days notice prior to moving VFE licenses to paid Archive User licenses.  We strongly recommend that you start planning for this transition. (see our blog post on this topic)

To discuss Google Workspace subscription is best for your business, explore the incentive discounts, or get answers to your questions, please email us or submit this form. We will arrange a call with one of our Cloud Advisors.

Google Workspace: Vault Former Employee Licensing & Cost

Google VaultCoinciding with the announcement of the move to Google Workspace, Google also announced that Vault Former Employee, or VFE, licensing will deprecate and no longer be available.  While Google is offering Archive User, or AU, licensing, the licenses will no longer be free. In this article we go into more detail on what VFE license are, Google workspace archive user license prices, and what options you have moving forward.

What are VFE licenses from Google?

VFEIn G Suite, in order to preserve data in Vault for former employees, you needed to keep the user’s account active. As this could be expensive for many businesses, Google provided relief with free VFE licenses that maintain the archive without having to pay for the user account.

For customers that came to G Suite as former Postini customers, Google VFE licenses are a separate, free subscription.  For other customers, VFE licenses were provided as additional, free G Suite Basic, Business, or Standard Licenses. Vault Former Employee, or VFE, licensing will deprecate and no longer be available. Below is the information and dates you need to know.

Note that the vast majority of customers with VFE licensing, particularly small and midsize businesses, are former Postini customers.

What are AU licenses and How Much Do They Cost?

In Google Workspace, Archive User licenses allow you to maintain your vault archive for past users without paying for a full Google Workspace license.  Depending on your subscription, AU licenses will cost between $4 and $7 per user per month ($48-$84 per year).  This is significantly less than the $18 to $30 per user per year to keep an active license.

As of this blog post AU licenses are only available with the Google Workspace Enterprise Plus subscription. We expect AU licensing to be added to Enterprise Standard and Business Plus subscriptions some time in 2020 Q1.

When do VFE licenses go away?

For Former Postini Customers:

The end date for VFE licensing for former Postini Customers has not been set.  Google will provide these customers with at least 60 days notice before the licenses expire.  By default these VFE licenses will automatically transition to paid AU licenses.

At this time, we do not expect these VFE licenses to end prior the addition of AU licenses to other Enterprise and Business subscriptions. As such, our best estimate is that this change will happen no earlier than 2020 Q3.

For non-Postini Customers:

The end date for non-Postini customers is December 31, 2020.  At this time, VFE licenses will convert to paid AU licenses. Customers will need to move to the Google Workspace Enterprise Plus subscription for this to occur.

What Your Options Are for Google Workspace Archive User Licenses:

Non-Postini Customers

Non-Postini customers have until the end of the year to migrate data out of the VFE accounts to another location or service, or to prepare for the transition to Google Workspace Enterprise Plus and AU licensing.  Both options involve cost, either labor and tools to move the data or new subscription fees.  If you want to migrate your data out of VFEs, you have multiple options. The best option will depend on the number of users and amount of data.

Former Postini Customers

We recommend former Postini customers with VFE licensing begin their planning process now.

Since VFE licenses are a separate “product”, you can take advantage of our incentive discounts for moving from G Suite to Google Workspace before the end of the year.

Looking forward, you want to decide what VFE data you need or want to keep, and whether it is worthwhile to move the data or pay for the AU licensing when the transition happens.

Your Next Step:

The best way to move forward with Google Workspace archived user license cost decisions is to contact us and speak with one of our Cloud Advisors. We can help you assess your situation, discuss options and pricing, and pick the solution that best meets your requirements and budget.