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Pros & Cons of a Digital Microsoft Inspire 2020

Jul 21, 2020 by Laura Zawacki

Quadrotech has been a sponsor of the Microsoft Inspire conference (previously WPC) for the past 5 years and many individuals from our team attended the event well before then too. While we were looking forward to attending the event in person, we’re ready to see how Microsoft and partners navigate the first digital Microsoft Inspire! This year’s Microsoft Inspire conference will take place online July 21-22. It’s free to register, bringing Microsoft partner sessions to the masses.

I asked last year’s Quadrotech attendees what they’ll miss most with the conference happening digitally, and what they’ll happily leave behind.

What we will miss about in-person Inspire:

  • Paul Robichaux: “Sure, the parties are fun and all, but the meetings with partners and Microsoft are absolutely the highlight of the event. Being able to get face-to-face, show off what we’re working on, and get and give really clear, direct feedback is incredibly valuable.”
  • Nick Dishman: “Getting to see the familiar faces of so many contacts that have been made at previous events. Attending evening events (Partner Celebration and private events).”
  • Laura Zawacki: “Chatting with both current and potential partners and Microsoft contacts at our booth. Seeing the excitement for our Office 365 migration services and management solutions. I was also looking forward to meeting our new Microsoft Partner Development Manager.”
  • Daniele Chizzolini: “Meeting new people and partners from all over the world. Having the opportunity to exchange ideas with interesting and savvy IT professionals and partners. Drinking amazing, ice cold, IPAs at the end of the day.”

What we are happy to skip this year:

  • Paul Robichaux: “I have never been to Vegas and thought “wow, this weather is spectacular, and I wish I could stay longer.”
  • Nick Dishman: “Back pain & exhaustion from standing all day. Meals at the conference. Being away from home for a week.”
  • Laura Zawacki: “As the sponsor coordinator, I have to say it was nice to get a break from the weeks and weeks of logistics and marketing planning for the event. I will also not miss the last-minute scramble to find a cord or connector we forgot to pack for the booth.”
  • Daniele Chizzolini: “Suffering through the heat of Vegas in July. Polar temperature air conditioning in the halls.”
  • Inconsistent WIFI signal in the expo hall.
  • Unwrapping hundreds of individually wrapped QuadroBulls to hand out.

 What about digital Inspire are you looking forward to?

  • Nick Dishman: “Ability to attend more sessions…in pajamas.”
  • Laura Zawacki: “Ability to focus on the sessions and increased access so more individuals from our team can participate.”

As expected, there is some uncertainty around the value a digital Microsoft Inspire will offer. While we wish an in-person event was possible, our team appreciates that Microsoft cares for the health and safety of their employees and partners. We’re thankful that Microsoft has done what they can to deliver an event with many of the same components as the live event.

This year’s event will be different and surely come with its own challenges (time zones, technology issues), but we will surely see some surprising pros. Since this is Microsoft’s first large-scale digital event, it will hopefully give the Microsoft ecosystem some insight into what digital Microsoft Ignite 2020 will look like!

We’re looking forward to learning more about Microsoft’s strategic focus for FY’21 and collaborating with Microsoft and our partners for another successful year! If you’re interested in learning more about a Quadrotech partnership, get in touch!