Microsoft Inspire 2020: Empowering Partners with New Opportunities
de facto Infotech successfully hosted a subtle yet energetic MICROSOFT INSPIRE 2020 at its India office. The objective was to experience a variety of keynotes and learning sessions.
Even in the current times of the COVID-19 pandemic, we witnessed outstanding participation by our employees. Our management team worked out a remarkable arrangement by creating a comfortable Inspire lounge with food and beverages running the entire night.
The idea was to absorb and enjoy the event as much as possible while keeping precautionary & safety measures in check.
What Was Different About Microsoft Inspire 2020?
The difference was evident and anticipated in the wake of the current pandemic situation– experiencing Inspire virtually. And yet, Microsoft and the partner community ensured that the event should be nothing but awesome!
Right from the immersive learning sessions to the connection zones, every aspect of the event was uncovering a new perspective and signaling towards a more significant change in how Microsoft cloud solutions can benefit businesses and individuals.
Most discussions centered around the current predicament of the COVID-19 pandemic and the ensuing economic crisis. While many organizations struggled in coping with the unprecedented situation, Microsoft cloud solutions were more than prepared with plenty of solutions ahead of time, specifically in fast-developing areas like Teams, Windows Virtual Desktop, Power Platform, and Dynamics 365. These solutions have successfully contributed to mitigate the risk and alleviate the situation for businesses and individuals.
Microsoft Power Platform has shown exemplary results during the last few months. Some citizen apps’ development and execution are now possible with a turnaround time of merely two days and have demonstrated outstanding outcomes.
Not to mention, the advances and ease of use brought by Microsoft Teams, which emerged as a champion for several companies worldwide. Schools and higher institutes could make remote learning possible and accessible to students with the help of Teams and its user-friendly functionalities. While student and educator communities were busy asking for more features for a better experience, Microsoft was already prepared and introduced necessary additions well in time.
What Was Unique and Intriguing about MS Inspire 2020?
The first-ever conducted Microsoft Inspire came to a close but left us feeling empowered and hopeful for the future.
An enormous amount of content was generated and presented during the event, including candid talks by Microsoft senior leadership and popular sessions covering trending subjects like purpose-driven digital activities, human connection, diversity & inclusion, unlocking growth with Microsoft Azure, COVID-19 apps and Business Applications.
But there was more! The key highlight of Inspire, as usual, was the connection platform.
The digital event could have made personal conversations less effective and a disaster this year, but that wasn’t the case. On the contrary, Microsoft opened the platform for networking more productively.
So, here are a few terrific initiatives that truly made Inspire worthwhile –
Know Before You Go
Considering the event was digital this year, the Know Before You Go session helped our team set their expectations and received guidelines to follow. Most importantly, the moderator introduced the MyInspire website and navigated through the site to make most of this event. This session helped our team prepare better and gave us ample time to set schedules and create a possible two-day itinerary.
Out of the many things that Inspire is known for, networking with other partners is most beneficial. As you could guess, we were apprehensive about how well would networking with other partners go this year. Well, believe it or not, the attendee networking portal gave out a 50,000 plus attendee list, always-on, to connect one-to-one or one-to-few. After connecting, one could send Microsoft Teams meeting invite for further association. And, our team was fortunate enough to make some valuable connections in different geographies.
Ask the Experts
Microsoft took excellent care of addressing queries by arranging to Ask the Expert sessions for interactive Q&A, post most of the learning segments. These sessions were unscripted, with a moderated chat environment where the subject matter experts were present to entertain questions from partners. We received brilliant and thought-provoking responses on education accelerators and how educators and students can benefit from cloud solutions.
Get Some Swag
Till last year, it was easy to shout and scream about your presence in the MS Inspire event. However, the Coronavirus pandemic made sure we could not post those pictures on Social media this year. But Microsoft had that planned too! The downloadable digital swag kit included event badges, LinkedIn wallpapers, banners, Twitter headers, social stickers, and Microsoft Teams backgrounds. And, we made use of them throughout the event on our social media handles. Consequently, we attracted a lot more audiences on social media this year and created quite a stir on our LinkedIn page.
We were able to participate in a few (space was limited, early birds could join in more partner conversations) of the informal discussions to discuss current industry topics of mutual interest and engaged with new partners in varied geographies. Speaking about geographies, Inspire also boosted Area General Sessions, which gave plenty of area-specific insight.
Fun and Wellness
Although our Microsoft Inspire lounge and employee energy kept us wide awake through the night, yet it was interesting to take a break and check out the Fun & Wellness activities in the Connection Zone. The light-hearted and humor-filled activities along with the self-care sessions, were amusing. Microsoft was successful in bringing a well-rounded experience into the digital event.
“Microsoft Inspire 2020” ended with inspiring ideas, updates, and essential takeaways for the partner community.
What Lies in the Future?
It is easy to forget about the environmental crisis when engrossed in your fast-growing cloud business, yet Microsoft often surprises you by adding a new goal to your kitty. And, this one was hard to ignore!
Microsoft is working with eight leading corporations to launch a new coalition to be carbon negative by 2030 with the support of partners and customers.
Carbon emission will be the talk of the town. Partners, including us, need to buckle up our seat belts to participate and accelerate business action towards a net-zero carbon economy.
Could not Attend Microsoft Inspire 2020?
If you have missed out on all the great sessions and learnings in MS Inspire, do not worry!
Here is your chance to get a closer look at the live sessions or review a few presentations again- library of on-demand videos.
Like many other partners, we hope to see you next year in MS Inspire with the same enthusiasm. If the world we are in now, supports and works towards eradicating the virus from its root, as we have done before, we can witness a bigger and better event next year. Fingers crossed.
See you all in Microsoft Inspire, 2021!