Interchange Nashville: Hot Takes, Hot Weather, and Hot Chicken
The NFL draft may have been the largest sporting event in Tennessee history this year, but Ivanti made even bigger news. For the first time ever, we went to Nashville for Interchange. You may not have seen any kind of news coverage about it, but that's only because we didn't want to upstage the NFL.
Every year, our annual user conference brings together the best and the brightest. Our customers, partners, and prospects travel from all across the globe to learn from and network with Ivanti product managers, developers, and user experience teams. It's a great opportunity for us to get in-person feedback from our customers and discuss how to use Ivanti technology to its fullest.
Here's a recap of this year's Interchange.
It should be noted that each keynote session began and ended with the very talented members of Blue Stone Circle, who had more energy at 7:30 a.m. than many of us have in an entire day.
data-lang="en"> April 30, 2019
In the first keynote, CEO Steve Daly and CMO Steve Morton took the stage to talk about the path of unified IT, Ivanti Cloud, #IvantiCares initiatives (including our partnership with 5 For The Fight and our unlimited VTO policy) and our 2019 Partners of the Year. We also gave out our inaugural Customer of the Year award to a very deserving Thomas Smith.
Next up was CTO Tom Davis and VP of Product Management Duane Newman who talked about unified IT using live demos. The first demo was a real-time look at how Ivanti Cloud, Service Management, Asset Management, and Endpoint Management work together. Several IT experts joined the stage to provide commentary on how Ivanti products are used in their respective organizations.
And to kick off the week of prizes and giveaways: Our top three "Steve's Sweet Suite" Twitter contest finalists were Adam Howard, Chris Green, and William Dotson. A brutal battle of "Name That Country Song" ensued between the three contestants, each competing to stay overnight in the luxurious suite. In the end, Adam Howard boot-skootin'-boogied his way to victory.
data-lang="en"> May 1, 2019
The second keynote came in hot with a video of Steve Morton trying Nashville's famous hot chicken for the first time. See the full video here.
After the crowd tried to collectively "unsee" Steve in a tank top, Ken Miller (General Manager, Intelligent Cloud for Microsoft) took the stage to discuss how Microsoft has embraced the Cloud.
Tom Davis and Duane Newman tag-teamed more product demos, this time with a focus on Ivanti Security Controls.
Following an interview with VP of IT Keith Lutz and CISO Phil Richards, Ian Aitchison, Senior Product Manager for ITSM, jumped onstage to talk about how to optimize ITxM.
The next interviews were of two Ivanti customers: Jennifer Bouillion, who spoke about her role as a Senior Analyst for IT Service Delivery at Trinity Industries, and Bobby Camerson, who spoke about his role as Principal Analyst at Forrester.
"Technology-targeted neuroplasticity will make us faster, recover more rapidly, hear more acutely, and think more effectively." @poppycrum, PhD, at #interchange19 closing keynote 🧠#WomenInTech pic.twitter.com/oqKTZqn4ul— Ivanti (@GoIvanti) May 2, 2019
Our third and final keynote was a special presentation from renowned neuroscientist and technologist Poppy Crum, PhD, whose inspiring presentation made us feel like audience members of a TED Talk.
We ended the session with our Grand Prize Giveaway, a $5,000 "Power of Music" VIP Trip. The winner could choose from the Academy of Country Music Awards (Nashville), the American Music Awards (Los Angeles), Hamilton (New York), or any music event of their choice. Finalists were chosen based on their engagement with the Interchange mobile app.
Once again, Adam Howard was a finalist because he clearly loves participating in contests. The other two finalists were Patrick Ferris and Terrie Hitchcock.
Grand Prize Question: What is the distance, in miles, as the crow flies, taking into account Coriolis Effect, between Nashville and Orlando?
Each finalist wrote down a number. The correct answer was 613 miles, and Patrick's guess was the closest. Congrats Patrick!
Women In Tech Luncheon
We've come a long way with our Women In Tech initiative, thanks to the many dedicated employees taking part in the movement outside of their regular jobs.
data-lang="en"> April 29, 2019
Our Women In Tech blog section is bursting with inspiring stories of women who have succeeded in their careers. Browse the blogs and you'll also find recaps of volunteer experiences, Ivanti's participation in local events, how to recruit more women into technology, social media campaigns, and more.
We've recently expanded the movement into the webinar space and will continue to keep the conversation alive in as many ways as possible.
It's with all of this as a backdrop that we proudly host a Women In Tech Luncheon at Interchange each year.
This year we were pleased to hear from CDW's Sandy Marguerite, who shared her journey into the IT industry and offered insights into how women can thrive in this area.
“Taste of Tennessee” Welcome Reception
For many conference attendees, this year's Interchange was their first time in Nashville. What better way to get everyone immersed in all things Nashville than a reception decked out in the sights, sounds, and flavors that the city is known for?
Yes, there was country music, and peppered between sponsor booths was an abundance of Tennessee-style cooking from local restaurants.
And if you still weren't having a good time, famous music artists Johnny Cash and Dolly Parton would surely put a smile on your face—if not for their commitment to their characters then for their hilarious chemistry together.
Sponsor Happy Hour
After a long day of learning, we invited all attendees to relax for a snack and a drink, courtesy of our sponsors. Samples of local whiskey put the "happy" in "happy hour," and yes, more country music was playing in the background.
If you weren't a fan of country music before Interchange, you either became one or became even more resolute in your non-fandom. There was no middle ground.
Interchange Conference Party
data-lang="en"> March 15, 2019
And last but not least, our legendary conference party. Interchange regulars already know what to expect: Ivanti executives shredding it onstage under the band name Exit Strategy.
But first, we got a quick line-dancing lesson and enjoyed a variety of games and delicious cuisine in the western-themed venue. Just more Nashville culture to soak up before going back home.
Then when Exit Strategy took the stage, many of us breathed a huge sigh of relief as we were given a much-needed respite from the week of country music (no offense, country music lovers).
The band covers everything from Coldplay and Twenty One Pilots to The Proclaimers and the Beastie Boys. You can't help but lose yourself in the music... (no, Eminem is not a part of the set, but those lyrics apply here).
Thank you to everyone who made this conference a success! We'll see you next year in Las Vegas.