Three things I learned this morning at Microsoft SharePoint Conference 2014 have to do with Office 365 use cases, Yammer, and the importance of outlets and chairs at a conference.
Thing #1: Jeff Teper's Birthday is When?
At a Microsoft-sponsored panel this morning, I didn't realize Jeff Teper would be sitting down at the table where I sat eating a crepe with blueberries on it, and start talking cloud with us. So I said the first thing that came to my caffeine-deprived and blueberry-stuffed brain, which was "You look too young to be the father of SharePoint."
Which, of course, he probably has heard a thousand times. He laughed politely (likely wanting to club me over the head with said crepe) and noted that his 50th birthday is coming. (Or did he say it had already come? Does it matter to anyone under 50?)
He talked cloud, he talked about IT pros worrying about losing their jobs, he talked opportunities rather than losses. It gave me hope. I didn't take notes, because I was eating, so there you go. Hook up with a better journalist who actually has a memory next time.
Thing #2: Yammer Governance
I have to say, the user panel Microsoft organized was tailor made to someone like me. Black & Decker was there (home improvement--oh yeah!), Shireland Collegiate Academy (educators are my relatives), and Trek Bicycles (I put my life on hold every year for the Tour de France, the USA Pro Cycling Challenge, the Giro D'Italia, okay, stop already).
Seeing how these organizations put Office 365 and SharePoint Online to work was actually quite fascinating. I hope to blog more about it later. But for the moment, I'd never thought about viral adoption versus structured adoption, terms moderator Dux Raymond Sy brought up as he questioned the IT experts from these organizations.
I mean, I hear about challenges with SharePoint adoption all the time. But no one has ever said the word "viral" and "adoption" in the same sentence as SharePoint. And to tell the truth, that sentence still hasn't crossed my ears.
It was Yammer and viral adoption that I heard. Interesting factoid: At Shireland, they got Yammer up and running and within a half hour from the first employee discovering it, they had 90 users.
However, as you can imagine, they're not rolling it out to students. Yet. That's where governance is key. Crucial even.
Thing #3: Technology Is Only as Good as the Outlet Supply
Especially at Las Vegas conferences, if you've ever attended, you know that hotels do not want people sitting around away from the restaurants and casinos. Thus, there are few places to sit, aside from the floor, at most convention centers there. Between conference sessions, when everyone rushes out to charge devices and/or do actual work, those seats fill fast.
Enter me, with Lenovo ThinkPad losing battery juice after only a couple of hours, searching for a place to sit AND an outlet nearby for charging. Because I was wearing a skirt, floor seating was not an option. Which left me walking around with a searching look, scanning pillars and walls and eyeing people sitting alone on benches.
It's a good reminder that, whatever latest and coolest technology you've got, the bottom line is, at some point you're going to care more about where an outlet and a chair are. I think this relates to cloud somehow. And Internet bandwidth. But maybe only in Australia, so feel free to move along now, this post is done.
More tonight after meetings with Microsoft, Nintex, and K2, and others!