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Microsoft’s Nadella: Digital Transformation a Big Opportunity for Partners

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MICROSOFT WPC — Reinventing productivity and business processes, creating more personal computing and building the intelligent cloud platform are the three critical stepping steps – to name a few – on the road to partner profitability as digital transformation takes hold in businesses of every size.

Microsoft's Satya NadellaDigital transformation was the theme of the event and the vision that Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella laid out at the keynote kickoff on the first full day of the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference (WPC) 2016.

At the first-ever sold out WPC, this year being held in Toronto, Microsoft’s head honcho made no bones about the journey that both Microsoft and savvy partners must pursue as they carry out the company’s mission “to empower every person and organization on the planet to do more,” with integrated intelligence at every turn.

What Nadella called an “unprecedented opportunity” for digital services and products from Microsoft’s partner ecosystem will require partners to develop new expertise, form new partnerships, leverage new technologies, and essentially rethink the way they do business — particularly as the Internet of Things (IoT) takes hold.

So, for example, reinventing productivity and business processes translates into removing the barriers between productivity and business apps with the most important element – data – making this possible. In regard to personal computing, Windows 10 spans multiple devices, including HoloLens – Microsoft’s fully self-contained holographic computer – opening an expansive opportunity for partners. And, building the intelligent cloud platform helps makes all of this possible.{ad}

This vision was made more concrete with products such as the recently introduced Dynamics 365, which enables purpose-built micro applications for business users based on role type, such as field service, sales, finance and operations; PowerApps, Power BI and Microsoft Flow for business-process orchestration; and Azure, Cortana Intelligence Suite and HoloLens to build the intelligent-cloud platform, to name a handful.

GE Chairman Jeff Immelt joined Nadella on stage and not only talked about the industrialized Internet, but introduced GE’s Predix platform that’s available on the Azure cloud. The giant company has been on the forefront of IoT, which added to the credibility of Immelt’s parting words that, “The future will be based on who digitizes the fastest.”

Tech Data timed the launch of a new IoT business practice to coincide with Monday’s digital transformation theme. Victor Paradell, vice president IoT solutions in Europe, will lead the distributor’s new global practice. This year, Tech Data’s efforts will focus on raising partner awareness about the IoT practice, as well as solutions, according to Paradell, who is based in Barcelona.

“We want to make this simple for our reseller partners,” Paradell told us. However, the challenge is that there are many technology components required for an IoT solution. Interoperability is key, he noted. He expects the rollout of the global IoT practice to evolve over the next several years.

In the meanwhile, the distributor will have an IoT practice framework that includes enablement and training for partners to build their own IoT practice.


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