UK conference round-up: "Very useful, very relevant"

27 June 2017
6 minute read
ITAM News & Analysis

UK conference round-up: "Very useful, very relevant"

27 June 2017
6 minute read

The ITAM Review 2017 UK Conference was held at the Kia Oval in South London on the 13th and 14th June.

The theme for our second annual ITAM Review UK conference was “ITAM in a cloud era”. As always, our topics and theme were based on feedback and listening to ITAM Review readers.

As I mentioned in the pre-event video, we’re in a cloud era not because of your proportion of spend on cloud (which is likely to be 10%-25% at most) – but because all of the large software publishers you are spending money with have the strategic focus of moving you to cloud as quickly as possible. My opening plenary session explored the skills and approaches we are likely to need as we navigate the cloud era and fast approach the 2020s.

Conference Video

My Highlights

  • Jochen Hagenlocher (ITAM Review Excellence Awards, ITAM Professional of the Year, 2016) gave a great summary of his journey in SAM and the scope of his practice. Most impressive was Jochen describing how he built his team by identifying risk to his business and then saying “I can sort that out for you but I’ll need head count”.
  • David Foxen, former ITAM Review Analyst and all round “SAM Beast” provided a great session on gamification and creating – not only communications but a real buzz around the possibilities of SAM. Awesome work David
  • Psst – Nominations for 2017 Excellence Awards are open!
  • Much focus is given to compliance and saving money, but the UK conference provided a good reminder of the possibilities with ITAM, for example how the ITAM team can provide good data to support moving to Office 365, Azure, AWS and all round project planning. In particular one of the interactive sessions included an open debate on how ITAM teams were able to support their broader ITAM teams and raise their profile by providing intelligence around “Wannacry”.
  • Kylie Fowler provided a unique perspective of the new economics of cloud. For example comparing the wild profitability of cutting new software CD’s once the software is finished versus the ongoing overheads of constantly providing cloud infrastructure and how it affects financial reporting. Fresh insight, thanks Kylie.
  • “Yes, IAAS is an opportunity for optimisation but we’ve got other fish to fry”. Speaking to one UK company who said they were spending £100K a month on Amazon AWS yet it still wasn’t a big enough opportunity to pursue optimisation due to the scale of the spend on other providers. A good point, but AWS is not only low hanging fruit with immediate financial impact – it is also a case of managing the cost and risk within AWS as much as the actual spend. A topic for much further research on The ITAM Review in the future. Arguably our UK conference generated more questions than answers!
  • Within a discussion on bringing new blood and younger folk into the ITAM space – at least half of the audience at the UK conference said they were open to being a mentor to a younger professional – something we will explore further.
  • I personally really enjoyed delivering the interactive tool selection workshop and look forward to repeating it in USA and Australia.

Speaker Ratings*

* excludes ITAM Review speakers, based on delegate feedback forms.

Top 3 rated Guest Plenaries

  1. Jochen Hagenlocher
  2. Guy Tritton
  3. Paul Denman 

Top 3 Best Scoring Workshops

  1. Danny Begg
  2. Eric Chiu & Ian Scille
  3. David Foxen

Our lead sponsor for the UK conference was IBM secondary support provider Origina. Tomas O’Leary, speaking of the conference, said:

“Software Asset Managers are growing in influence but they still face challenges selling third party support internally. Where SAM sits within the enterprise often dictates how influential they are. The closer to the CIO Office the better as they can be part of the decision making process, collecting the information they need, but also demonstrating the value of third parties and what they can bring to the table in terms of helping to manage risks and costs of major IT and digital initiatives and with ongoing IT spend.

Overall, A top quality event, great attendance, excellent audience participation and all of the sessions were either informative, or very informative! And to top it all, we had crowds over at our stand and a call out to Chris Gottwald who won a weekend in Dublin to learn how to Irish dance!”

A sincere thank you to all of our speakers, sponsors and delegates for a great conference. See you in 2018!

The UK conference returns in June 2018. Our USA conference is September 27 – 28 in Florida followed by our first Australian conference in Sydney on 22nd – 23rd November.

See you in 2018!

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