Update from day 3 of the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference (WPC), which I am attending with Mike Dearlove our Managing Director and Jason Bass, our Technical Director…
If you have been asked the same question for the last five years, then maybe the answer you are giving should change.
Phil Sorgen kicked off Day 3 of the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference (WPC) by declaring that the most common question Partners ask him is about Cloud Profitability. It demonstrates how difficult this job has been if this conversation is still common. However, as a Partner and as if I needed reminding, Microsoft is on a mission in terms of its cloud services and you will either be on the bus or not…but its leaving anyway.
I’ve attended WPC for a number of years now and heard a variety of keynotes. This year I heard the best one yet. Brad Smith is Microsoft Executive Vice President and General Counsel. He is the guy who is responsible for ensuring that Microsoft has the most trusted Cloud Platform. His mantra is that when it comes to the Internet everybody should be empowered and protected.
Brad spoke about some of the issues that Microsoft and all of us face in the current ever changing political and social climate. These included Microsoft’s reaction to incidents such as Charlie Hebdo and the cyber-attacks on Sony. This is the guy who has sued the American Government three times. He has already won twice and is expecting a decision about the third issue soon.
Whatever I write won’t do this justice, so I am hoping that we will be able to share the keynote content with you at some point in the near future. You should all take a look if you can.
Last on the keynote, as usual, was Kevin Turner who laid out Microsoft’s strategy for FY2016:
- Own the cloud
- Windows 10
- Compete to Win
- Obsess over customer satisfaction
For me it took a while to get going and the cheerleading wasn’t as impactful. However, there is no arguing that Microsoft has a very strong story in each of its prime focus areas.
Last year the competitive element was more subdued. This year the gloves were loosened if not fully off but the fact that they regularly showcase Microsoft delivering services across vendors is to be applauded. For example, the collaboration of Linux in Azure and the integration of Office 365 and Salesforce shows a maturity that I believe has become stronger since Satya Nadella took over. Kevin couldn’t resist having a dig at the prime competitor Google though.
Much of today’s sessions focused on leadership and digital marketing, as well as predictions from Gartner in their annual reading of the tea leaves session. Tomorrow there are the UK and worldwide subsidiary Partner events where the local teams get to confirm what their priorities are for 2016.
The big pluses for me at this year’s conference have been the conversations and meetings held with the leadership teams and I hope to be able to share some of the great things that EACS will be doing in the coming weeks and months.
Hopefully you have enjoyed and benefitted from some of these insights, but you can always reach out to us if you would like to have a longer discussion.
David Fuller, Partners & Alliances Director at EACS