Kirk iSS Senior Account Manager Carson George and Systems Consultant Bryan Spence recently attended the annual Microsoft Inspire Conference. The conference, which took place July 9-13 in Washington DC, is an opportunity for Microsoft partners to showcase their solutions, as well as network with other vendors and partners from around the world.
Partners from 140 countries attended the Inspire Conference. The Kirk iSS team found the exchanging of solutions to be of great value. “It was amazing to hear that we all share the same customer experiences with other partners from other parts of the world when it comes to working with our customers on the journey to the cloud” says Carson George. Those exchanges mean Kirk iSS has even greater insight into finding the right solution for clients.
Microsoft Inspire Conference Highlights
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and Strategic Alliances Director Priya Gore were some of the speakers at the event. A major highlight was the company’s commitment to be not only “partner-lead”, but also “partner-first” by investing $250 million to connect partners with customers.
Microsoft unveiled a new product called Microsoft 365. It is a new bundle device management and security offering, that brings together Office 365 and Windows 10. There are two versions – Microsoft 365 Enterprise for large organization and Microsoft 365 Business for small and midsize businesses.
Microsoft also announced that Azure Stack, the company’s hybrid cloud platform, is available for ordering from initial hardware partners HPE, Dell, EMC and Lenovo. Azure Stack enables hybrid application development and provides a consistent platform for connecting from Azure data centers to the edge.
Changes to Customer Management
Microsoft is changing how they manage customers. The changes focused on enabling its partners to develop, grow and be successful. Microsoft wants to better understand its partner’s customer industry verticals and make sure that the conversations Microsoft account teams are having with partners is more relevant. The company will now have Healthcare, Legal, and Financial account managers assigned within various regions. Additionally, Microsoft partners and customers will be working with either a partially or completely new Microsoft team after recent changes in personnel.
Cloud Solution Provider
Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) services were in heavy focus at the conference. Microsoft’s CSP is maturing as the lead platform for partners to develop compelling and differentiated offerings for Microsoft Cloud services. A major point of interest was a CSP that offers customers a full cloud solution with the purchase of Microsoft’s cloud products like Office 365 and Azure.