An Update on the #GitLab Situation

It has been ten days since I published the story about how our GitLab licensing costs were going up by some 230%, and how we felt incredibly shafted — first, by the giant increase, and second by the lack of attention/care the sales people provided. There was a significant amount of interest in the article, especially by the folks at GitLab, including the CEO.

Unfortunately, the focus on the article was on the more technical aspects, especially the feature that we were “losing” — and this was entirely due to a misconception on my side. We aren’t actually losing features due to things changing tiers as much as we are losing features because we ourselves have forcibly downgraded our license.

Last year, in March, we acquired an Enterprise Premium license for 100 users, which came to around $10,000 (USD). This year, the quote for the same everything was $23,000 (USD); the 230% increase that I have mentioned. We asked, we cajoled, we did a song and dance, but the sales team basically said “take it or leave it, and don’t forget our prices are going up year-on-year!” Our initial gut reaction was to not even downgrade to starter, but simply switch to the free edition, and ascertain what our next steps were. However, we did pull the trigger on the downgrade, and had to make a few adjustments to our GitLab-based CICD workflow.

Sid, the CEO of GitLab, did reach out and have a Zoom chat, and did promise to figure out what was happening, though I was a bit surprised by the conversation, especially where I was asked to send the invoice *back* to GitLab. Surely there is a system somewhere that could have been used to pull that info up, since I myself did exactly that on our end during the call? If not, that speaks to a significant issue between the technical side, the business side, and the sales side — none of which are very appealing to a customer.

For now, we’ll hold off to see what GitLab comes back with, but I’d say that staying on their platform seems to be a difficult proposition to sell.