SharePoint Conference 2018, my thoughts and takeaways

I can’t believe we are already in June, getting back on the saddle after a week out of the office certainly comes with its own set of challenges. Luckily for me, a good half of my pending emails had something to do with “We have updated our Privacy Policy”.

My SPC18 Experience

SharePoint Conference 2018 was a very different experience for me as this year. I assisted the organizers with sponsor/exhibitor registration and helped exhibitors get settled into their booth. I had a lot of fun! Monday morning was definitely fast paced and kept us quite busy, but it was also a great chance to meet and greet quite a few friends from the community.

Being there once again (and I doubt I’m alone in this) felt like one big family reunion after 4 years!

This wouldn’t have been possible without Jackie Baillie, Bill Baer, Jeff Teper, my parents (who provided me with flight tickets as present) as well as the folks from the community who lend a hand promoting and in buying a t-shirt from the Mikeware T-Shirt Store (closed at this time).

Setting up the store, creating the t-shirt designs and wearing the marketer hat was also quite fun and a great learning opportunity.

Now, back to SharePoint!

It was very exciting to see the focus on the humble SharePoint list. I’ve always been a fan of lists and how they enable, in just a few clicks, a very powerful way to capture and visualize data without the need of an Excel file.

This, combined with Flow and PowerApps for improved process automation and optimizing the data entry is no doubt a winning combination. Having lists that update in real time is amazing and will make SharePoint feel truly modern.

Microsoft Flow, PowerApps, Power BI and SharePoint can be considered Microsoft’s core building blocks for business applications. The SharePoint Business Applications roadmap recently published by Chris McNulty shows just how invested the team is in creating a right environment to empower the non-code folks.

Personally, I have been waiting for the ability to add a PowerApps web part so I can present the app/form on a page, I guess for my use cases I have more use of desktop for work than mobile, so bring it as soon as possible!

SharePoint spaces was definitely a surprise! I see this as the first opportunity to dream how to bring an immersive experience into the world of enterprise content management and being able to create an experience that truly delights and engages. On the other hand, spaces will help make this type of technology easier to reach, so I’m excited for what this could enable in the future.

I heard a lot of discussion about hub sites, for my perspective, this will be a key piece that will allow us to provide structure and simplify management of permissions and customizations. #hubifyEarlyhubifyOften!

I’m a big fan of the Microsoft Graph so I attended a couple of sessions where this was presented. While thIMG_20180522_142005ere’s work ahead, I think the Graph is at a point where it can be a very valuable source of information and a way to explore and learn more about the organizational dynamics of where the work happens.

In summary, I think this SPC kicked off the roadmap for 2018/19 on a high note, with lots of exciting things to look for, both for on-premises and cloud, but I’m guessing a few things will be revealed in September at Ignite, Microsoft’s premier conference for IT pros. Looking forward to that!

Keynote Blues

If you didn’t make the event and would like to see some of these announcements, check out the SharePoint Virtual Summit video on demand.

Did you hear of any features you find exciting or “just what you needed” to solve a business or communication need? Please share, I’d love to know.

Talk to you soon!