Microsoft Viva Insights Consumption pricing

Microsoft Viva Insights is an employee experience product from Microsoft that provides insights into how employees are spending their time – are they in too many meetings, are their meeting productive, do they have the time needed to focus on tasks, who do they collaborate with and plenty of other areas.

While it provides a range of pre-built views into that data, organisations are able to build their own too – known as queries. Users, known as analysts, are able to create queries against the vast amounts of data collected by Viva Insights in order to gain more specific…insights into their organisation.

This introduces a range of new metrics and price considerations for organisations. Viva Insights queries are licensed based on capacity credits and every query costs a certain amount of credits, based on factors such as:

  • The number of measured employees included in the analysis
  • The number of weeks of data included in the query output for each measured employee
  • The number of metrics used in the query
  • The type of metrics used from the different price tiers

Within the query designer it will give an estimate of the required credits:

No billing info shown in Query designer

How is it priced?

See the source image

You’ll be pleased to know that Microsoft have introduced some low-level algebra to help calculate pricing, the formula being:



A = measured population i.e. number of employees included in the query

B= metrics – there are a range of metrics to choose from

C = price tier cost – yep, there are different price tiers

D = week i.e. the length of time covered by the data being analysed

Price tiers

There are 3 price tiers:

Tier 1 = 1.25 credits

Tier 2 = 2.25 credits

Tier 3 = 6 credits

Tier 1 includes a total of 68 metrics (at the time of writing) such as collaboration hours andlow quality meeting hours

Tier 2 includes “advanced metrics” which, at the time of writing, is the “network query” group which includes 10 individual metrics dealing with connections and levels of influence between staff.

Tier 3 includes metrics with CRM data

An example of a query calculation is shown here:

Query cost calculation

I think it’s interesting that, although they have this formula, Microsoft state:

“The cost shown is only an estimate. The estimate might vary from the query’s actual cost, which can be seen after the query is successfully ran”

What if you run a query with multiple metrics at different tiers? You calculate as above for each metric and then add the totals together.

How do you get credits?

Each Viva Insights license includes 1 capacity credit per month, pooled across the tenant. If an organisation requires additional capacity credits, they are licensed in increments of 5,000 credits and costs $5,000 per month.

Unused credits expire monthly.

Insights v Workplace Analytics

Viva Insights is the replacement for Workplace Analytics but the latter doesn’t appear to have disappeared completely – the SKU still seems to be available and the Microsoft documentation talks about the differences between Viva Insights Consumption tenants and Workplace Analytics tenants. Analysts working in a Workplace Analytics tenant won’t see query usage or consumption units.

Further Reading

Viva Insights consumption Docs page

Tier 2 network query metrics

Microsoft Product Terms: October 2021

Photo by Markus Winkler on

A couple of decent additions this month – new products across EXP (Employee Experience) and Security as well as (some) clarity around support offerings.

Viva new products

Microsoft Viva Insights & Viva Insights Capacity SKUs were added. Not only do we get a new product but we also get a new licensing piece to watch out for…the idea of additional capacity SKUs for Viva Insights analytics. I go into more depth here.

A growing security portfolio

2 x Privacy Management SKUs added – “Risk” and “Subject Rights Request”, furthering increasing Microsoft’s security position. It does, however, look like there was some confusion between “Office 365” and “Microsoft 365” for the pre-requisite licenses as they list “Microsoft 365 E1” which doesn’t exist…yet!

Support info

Microsoft have added a range of information about their support offerings including Unified Support and Premier Support, as well as some of the additional services that are available to purchase. Making this information publicly available will be a big benefit for customers and partners alike, as it hasn’t always been easy to know what was included etc.

You can see more about this in my post here.

One that nearly got away

A change that snuck past me initially in July is that Microsoft 365 Apps for Enterprise (formerly Office 365 ProPlus) is no longer classed as an “Enterprise Product” and is now an “Enterprise Online Service”. This means it is no longer required to be purchased enterprise-wide.

Microsoft Viva Insights: What is it?

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Microsoft Viva is the new range of Employee Experience tools from Microsoft and is made up of a range of Viva products:

  • Insights
  • Topics
  • Learning
  • Connections

A brief overview of the four components is here but I want to dive deeper into Viva Insights.

What is it?

Initially it looked like it would build upon the Workplace Analytics product but Viva Insights is now listed as “formerly Workplace Analytics” so it appears to be a rebrand as well as adding new features. Tbh, that makes sense as it helps to keep everything in the “Viva” bucket.

Viva Insights aims to improve employee wellbeing and productivity through using data to highlight people’s work habits such as answering emails outside of work hours and spending too much time in meetings for example. It will also provide reminders to block out time for “focus tasks” and help managers ensure they schedule regular 1-1 meetings with team members. The personal insights also include mindfulness sessions, reminders to take breaks, and a check-in to gauge a user’s mood.

It aims to provide insights at a team level and also an organisation wide level, enabling action to be taken wherever potential issues may arise. Given the impact of COVID-19 and the long-term increase in flexible working, anything that can help organisations better look after their employees – and enable employees to better look after themselves – is well timed and has the potential to be very useful.

I speak to a lot of people who find themselves on constant back to back video meetings and calls, with little time to process any of that information and even less to simply sit back and think and plan. More work = less productivity in many cases and Viva Insights may help with this…if used properly.

Pricing & Licensing

Viva Insights is an add-on license to:

  • Office 365 E1/E3/E5 (plus the A and G versions)
  • Microsoft 365 E3/E5 (plus the A and G versions)
  • Microsoft 365 365 Business Basic/Standard/Premium
  • Exchange Online Plan 1/2

and costs $4 per user per month.

Certain “personal insights” are available to all users with a license that includes Exchange Online, while others require the above add-on. There is also the extra consideration of Viva Insights Capacity.

Viva Insights Capacity

There are a range of additional things that an organisation can do with the data generated by Viva Insights – and this is where we get into the realm of capacity credits.

These additional capabilities include:

  • Analysis templates to quickly generate interactive Power BI reports tailored to common business scenarios
  • Advanced tools to help users query and customize metrics and combine Viva Insights data with external data, such as customer relationship management (CRM) and survey data
  • Analysis accelerators including an R-script library to help analyze organizational data trends, processes and networks
  • Built-in safeguards to help protect personal privacy

Pricing & licensing

Each Viva Insights license includes 1 capacity credit per month, pooled across the tenant. If an organisation requires additional capacity credits, they are licensed in increments of 5,000 credits and costs $5,000 per month.

Unused credits expire monthly.


Viva Insights represents two growing trends for Microsoft:

  • Software that is sold to parts of the business other than IT
  • Licensing which involves ongoing usage “credits” that can, potentially, be consumed in huge amounts across an organisation…and run up big bills

Organisations are definitely going to be looking for products that help them in this area and, within organisations already using Microsoft 365, Microsoft are well placed to be among the options.

If you’re responsible for Microsoft spend within your organisation, this is certainly something to keep an eye on in the future!

Further Reading

Microsoft Viva Insights

Microsoft Viva Insights Capacity

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