Program Framework

Microsoft Ignite 2015 – where to go in Chicago

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When it comes to putting on a conference, Microsoft know a thing or two about organising excellent events. So, when we got our tickets to Ignite 2015 we knew we could expect something very exciting. As the agenda has started to fill up with hundreds of sessions and influential speakers from Microsoft’s top brass, our list of things to see and do keeps getting longer and longer. Ignite kicks off in 10 days’ time (it takes places between 4th and 8th of May in Chicago). You shouldn’t wish your life away, but every new announcement on the Ignite Twitter feed makes us even more impatient to be there.

What is Ignite?

Since Microsoft’s ecosystem is so extensive, many of their previous conferences have been quite specialised – focussing on a specific tool such as Exchange, Lync, Project, SharePoint or MMS. Ignite bucks this trend however, and aims to incorporate all these diverse products into one enormous conference.

There are literally hundreds of sessions (794 to be precise) on offer and these cover almost everything you could want to know: there’ll be talks and seminars for technical professionals, CTOs, buyers, developers, managers, and well, almost everyone. For help planning your diary use the Ignite Schedule planner, you’ll need to do some serious time management!

Speaking of management…

We’re major advocates of Microsoft’s Project Management solutions, and keep up to date with the latest new and developments with the brand’s latest releases. Our FD Paul Major is at Ignite for the week and will, of course, be making a beeline to the sessions covering Microsoft Project. Under the guidance of Sajan Parihar, Project is an invaluable tool for organisations worldwide on a huge range of activities and programs. So, we’ll definitely be attending some of the following Project – specific seminars:


Developer to Developer: Meeting Custom Needs with Microsoft Project
When: Weds 6th May, 17:00 – 18:15 Speakers: Aesha Shah, Dan Macdonald, Eli Sheldon

Microsoft’s Vision and Roadmap for Work, Project, and Portfolio Management
When: Tue 5th May, 09:00 – 10:15. Speakers: Brett Brewer, Howard Crow, Sajan Parihar

Project Online Customer Panel: Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, St. Luke’s Hospital, and TE
When: Tue 5th May, 13:30 – 14:45. Speakers: Bradd Busick, Glenn Rebman, Larry Christensen, Yuval Stern

Microsoft Project Pro for Office 365: An Overview
When: Weds 6th May, 09:00 – 10:15. Speakers: Eli Sheldon, Heather Heide

IT Project and Portfolio Management in the Cloud
When: Weds 6th May, 13:30 – 14:45. Speakers: Jean Donati, Krishna Mamidipaka, Mike McLean

Real World Reports: Business Intelligence in Microsoft Project Online and Project Server 2013
When: Thu 7th May, 13:15 – 14:30. Speakers: Allan Rocha, Andrew Lavinsky, Mike McLean

How to Deploy Microsoft Project: Online and Server
When: Wed 6th May, 15:15 – 16:30. Speakers: Chris Boyd, Nadin Merali

Supporting Microsoft Project Online and Project Server: Tips and Tricks  
When: Fri 8th May, 12:30 – 13:45. Speakers: Brian Smith

Microsoft Project Online Customization: Best Practices
When: Thu 7th May, 17:00 – 18:15. Speakers: Alex Matyushenko, Chris Boyd, Chris O’Brien

What else is going on at Ignite?

Besides sessions related to Project Online and Project Server, we’re also looking forward to attending some of the key note speeches from Microsoft leaders in order to get a glimpse of their vision for the corporation. It’s a great chance to rub shoulders with our peers and catch up with friends and colleagues from the Project world. And, if we get a moment free we’ll be sure to go and have a look around Chicago and take in the view from the banks of Lake Michigan.

Reporting back

As you might have guessed, we’re very excited about what our trip to Ignite has to offer. If you’re going, we look forward to seeing you there, and if you missed out on tickets make sure you stream it live here. We’ll be reporting back from our trip soon and will let you know about all the latest from Microsoft!