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Keynotes & General Sessions

Hear from some of the biggest and brightest industry thought leaders as they discuss the latest trends and groundbreaking shifts in the unified communications and collaboration space.

Monday, March 17

11:00 AM – 12:00 PM
UC Summit – Has the Market Caught on, Finally?
Virtually all of the market research around UC has painted a positive picture: Revenues are up, more licenses are being shipped and more use cases continue to surface.

If those researchers are right, what’s changed? Are UC products and services improving, or has the market matured to the point where UC’s benefits are no longer in dispute? And what’s UC being deployed to do – lower costs, improve productivity, alter business processes or all of the above?

UC is also not immune from other trends shaping the world of IT – the growing impact of consumer technologies and use patterns, virtualization and the Cloud. But to what extent do these contribute to – or inhibit – UC adoption and deployment?

If your enterprise is preparing to upgrade to next-gen communications and collaboration capabilities in the next 12-18 months, what role should UC play in its architecture strategy and procurement plans, and what are the realistic options for UC service delivery? Join our panel of experts as they analyze and debate these issues.

1:00 PM – 1:45 PM
Mobility Summit: Enterprise Mobility: Can We Get it Right, Finally?
Mobility budgets have been exploding as more users are making their mobile number their primary number. Despite this, cost saving ideas like mobile UC clients or shifting voice traffic from cellular to Wi-Fi networks are often under-utilized. At the same time, organizations fail to articulate what the role of mobility should be in their organizations, and for those that do, it is more often a Marketing than an IT initiative. Should organizations be developing an overall strategy for mobility for B2E (Business-to-Employee) as well as B2C or should they simply continue to muddle along?

Please join us as we ask our panel of executives from leading mobility companies to address the following questions:

  • How important is cost savings in the overall move to BYOD?
  • Is security on either company-provided or user-owned mobile devices being adequately addressed, or is it a ticking time bomb?
  • Can the UC vendors or any enterprise app developers ever deliver the type of engaging experience users have come to expect from their mobile devices?
  • With iOS and Android firmly established, is there room for a third mobile ecosystem and will the next wave be driven by technologies like HTML5 and WebRTC?

Tuesday, March 18

9:00 AM – 9:15 AM
Conference Welcome and Overview

9:15 AM – 10:00 AM
Summit: Is There a New Model for Enterprise Communications & Collaboration?

For decades, we’ve heard that “convergence” was coming. Well, it’s arrived, and it’s becoming pervasive. The old boundaries within communications and collaboration are breaking down, as business apps and processes require integrated streams of data, video, voice and graphics running across both wired and wireless networks and devices.

The blurring of old technology boundaries creates other disruptions in the field -- most notably, what you will buy and from whom: Whether the topic is communications or the data center, video or storage, servers or collaboration services, there are new options for partners and delivery systems. Services and apps can be provided via the Cloud, on-premises or a hybrid of the two. And WebRTC could alter the landscape and change expectations for how communications and collaboration take place.

So what is the going-forward model for enterprise communications and collaboration? Will the traditional pillars of enterprise communications architecture – voice, data, and video – be replaced with choices organized around the desktop vs. the network vs. the “Cloud”? If the “consumerization of IT” is inevitable, how will the vendors meet the enduring requirements for security, compliance, scalability, manageability, and cost-effectiveness? And as consolidation continues within the industry, what are the prospects for genuine competition?

A panel of senior enterprise IT executives will discuss these and related issues. The conversation will provide essential insights as you develop your architecture and review your options for systems, services and applications.

Photo of Rowan Trollope

Keynote | 10:00 AM - 10:30 AM

Rowan Trollope

Senior Vice President and General Manager, Collaboration Technology Group, Cisco

Rowan Trollope, is Senior Vice President and General Manager of Cisco's Collaboration Technology Group, which develops collaboration solutions. He leads a global team responsible for identifying key market transitions in collaboration and managing future growth, expansion, and continued innovation.

The group's portfolio includes collaboration software, devices, infrastructure, and services that enable video collaboration, unified communications, customer contact centers, conferencing, mobility, and desktop virtualization. This includes such solutions as Cisco TelePresence, Cisco Unified Communications Manager, and Cisco WebEx.

Prior to joining Cisco, Trollope was the group president of the SMB and the Business Unit where he lead Symantec's sales, marketing and product development teams in the small and midsized business (SMB) segment as well as, the company's Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) business. He was responsible for driving Symantec's SaaS strategy and expanding cloud-based delivery and customer support models across the Symantec technology portfolio with a focus on enabling the company to better serve the SMB customer segment.

In his time at Symantec he was responsible for the Norton line of consumer products, including Norton Internet Security, Norton AntiVirus and Norton 360; and for key enterprise security solutions, including Symantec Security Information Manager and Symantec Enterprise Security Manager. He holds a variety of patents in computer security and operating systems maintenance.

10:30-11:00 Break

Photo of Kevin Kennedy

Keynote | 11:00 AM - 11:30 AM

Kevin Kennedy

President and Chief Executive Officer, Avaya

Kevin Kennedy is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Avaya Inc., a global provider of next-generation business collaboration and communications software and services, providing unified communications, real-time video collaboration, contact center, networking and related services to companies of all sizes around the world.

Dr. Kennedy currently serves U.S. President Barack Obama as a member of the President's National Security Telecommunications Advisory Committee. In 1987, he was a Congressional Fellow to the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Science, Space and Technology.

In the field of education, Dr. Kennedy was honored by the School of Engineering at Rutgers as their Alumnus of the Year and awarded an Alumni Medal of Excellence in 2006.

He is the author of "Devil in the Details," published in 2012, and a co-author of "Going the Distance: Why Some Companies Dominate and Others Fail," published in 2003. He has published more than 30 papers on computational methods, data networking and issues of technology management.

Dr. Kennedy holds two patents, one for the "Induced Flow Heat Exchanger" and the other patent for "Flexible Security Requirements in an Enterprise Network".

Dr. Kennedy currently serves on the board of directors of Avaya, KLA-Tencor Corporation, Digital Realty Trust, L.P. and the Canary Foundation.

Prior to joining the Avaya in December 2008, Dr. Kennedy was president and CEO at JDS Uniphase Corporation for six years, Chief Operating Officer at Openwave Systems, Inc., for two years and held various executive positions at Cisco Systems for eight years - most recently for the Service Provider Line of Business and Software Technologies Division. Earlier in his career, he spent seventeen years with AT&T Bell Laboratories.

Dr. Kennedy holds a B.S. in engineering from Lehigh University as well as M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in engineering from Rutgers University where he served as an adjunct professor from 1982-1984.

11:30 AM – 12:00 PM
Disrupter Conversation: Will the Cloud Come Between You and Your Vendor?

Enterprise Communications is moving from a hardware model to software, at the same time that IT in general is looking to the cloud for new models for deploying and operating services for their end users. The hardware-to-software transition is moving enterprise communications from the monolithic PBX model to the more diverse Unified Communications model, in which different applications can be sourced from different platforms—some potentially in the public cloud, some in the private cloud, some remaining on-prem—in a multitude of combinations.

These transitions create an opportunity to disrupt the traditional relationships between enterprises and their existing vendors. But will this disruption benefit your enterprise, and if so, how do you make sure you capture these benefits, both in terms of service capabilities and costs? Join us for a lively, provocative discussion of how the cloud is likely to impact your future vendor relationships, buying decisions, and technology choices.

Wednesday, March 19

9:00 AM – 9:15 AM
Welcome and Best of Enterprise Connect Awards

9:15 AM – 10:00 AM
Summit: Cloud-Based Communications – Is it Right for Your Business?
The chorus for moving communications and collaboration from a premises-based centralized deployment (or private cloud) to a public cloud or managed services model grows ever louder. Carriers, ISVs, and a new generation of cloud-based communications service providers are singing the same tune: Let us handle your call control, communications apps and ongoing operations because we can run them better, faster, and cheaper than you can.

Public cloud communications services seem to be gaining momentum in small- and mid-markets, turf that has historically relied heavily on phone companies and other service providers. And the average size of the deployments continues to rise.

The enterprise, however, has been a different story. On-site implementations remain preferred, thanks to the presence of trained staff, the benefits associated with lower total cost of ownership, integration with other existing and future IT infrastructure platforms, and equipment depreciation, as well as a perceived need to control information resources and assets.

But what do the data reveal? What are the economics of on-premises offerings versus cloud or managed communications services? What are the risks? Are communications as a service the right way to go for only for small- and mid-sized companies? Will large enterprises ultimately join the party?

This is a can’t-miss discussion for anyone involved with planning, designing or managing enterprise communications and collaborations networks and systems. The presenters will examine TCO for cloud-based solutions versus equivalent on-premises offerings; analyze the value proposition for cloud-based and managed services; and assess for whom this value is a reality.

Photo of Gurdeep Singh Pall

Keynote | 10:00 AM - 10:30 AM

Gurdeep Singh Pall

Corporate Vice President for Lync & Skype Engineering, Microsoft

Gurdeep Pall joined Microsoft in January 1990 as a software design engineer. He has worked on many breakthrough products in his tenure, starting with LAN Manager Remote Access Service. Pall was part of the Windows NT development team, working on the first version of Windows NT 3.1 in 1993 as a software design engineer, all the way through Windows XP in 2001 as general manager of Windows Networking.

During his work on Windows, he led design and implementation of core networking technologies such as PPP, TCP/IP, UPnP, VPNs, routing and Wi-Fi, and parts of the operating system. Pall co-authored the first VPN protocol in the industry - Point-to-Point Tunneling Protocol (PPTP) - which received the prestigious Innovation of the Year award from PC Magazine in 1996. He also authored several documents and standards in the networking area in the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) standards body in the mid-1990s.

Most recently, Mr. Pall was the corporate vice president for the Information Platform & Experience team responsible for vision, product strategy and R&D for the Bing services and platform that includes mobile, mapping, and speech. He was previously the corporate vice president for the Office Lync & Speech Group, overseeing the vision, product strategy and R&D for the Microsoft Lync family of products and Microsoft Tellme services. He is member of the Applications and Services Group senior leadership team. He was appointed general manager of Windows Real-Time Communications efforts in January 2002 and helped develop a broad strategy that led to the formation of the Real Time Collaboration division and acquisition of PlaceWare Inc. (now called Microsoft Office Live Meeting). Since then, Pall has led acquisitions of AG and Parlano, and key industry partnerships with HP, Polycom and Aspect. Microsoft's Unified Communications efforts have received many technical and design industry awards. Pall was named one of the "15 Innovators & Influencers Who Will Make A Difference" in 2008 by Information Week. He co-authored "Institutional Memory Goes Digital," which was published by Harvard Business Review as part of "Breakthrough Ideas for 2009" and subsequently presented at the World Economic Forum 2009 in Davos. Pall has more than 20 patents (in process or approved) in networking, VoIP and collaboration areas. He is on the board of trustees of Ashesi University.

11:00 AM – 11:30 AM
Disrupter Conversation: Is the User Experience the Next Frontier for Enterprise Communications?

Is the industry on the threshold of a new generation of products and services, whose dominant design considerations focus on the desires and habits of the end user, rather than on the system's functionality as a whole within the enterprise network architecture?

Increasingly, industry leaders are emphasizing the importance of such factors as ease of use and adapting the look, feel and mind-set of enterprise communications products. That may mean such considerations as trying to design a more intuitive user interface for a UC application, or it may mean finally taking advantage of wideband IP technologies to make audio quality better than the old world's "toll quality". The bottom line is that the enterprise communications industry has looked at the consumerization of IT and realized that end user choice is what will drive adoption of many enterprise products going forward—and the industry doesn't want to be pushed aside by the victory of the consumer sensibility.

If this argument is correct—and more importantly, if it resonates with business leaders and end users--what does it mean for the RFIs/RFPs that you're preparing today? And what about the apps your enterprise develops on its own? Join us for analysis and debate about how enterprises--and their vendors--can best respond to the consumerization of IT.

11:30 AM – 12:00 PM
Disrupter Conversation: Transforming the Customer Experience with Next-Gen Communications

Next-gen communications isn't just about a better experience for your end users; it's also about a better experience for your enterprise's customers. Big Data and its supporting analytics mean that you'll be able to deliver better service to your end customers, by putting more useful, actionable information at the disposal of your customer contact interfaces—whether those interfaces are self-service websites, live-agent text chats, voice or video interfaces--or some combination of all of these.

And integrating communications with next-gen analytics won't just transform the customer experience; it will also transform the enterprise organization. Specifically, it will bring communications professionals together with business-unit decision-makers, to ensure that the business's goals for customer engagement can be met with the tools provided by your communications teams. As an enterprise communications professional, you'll have a whole new constituency and set of stakeholders with whom you'll need to collaborate, in order to ensure that the systems you implement and operate can deliver what the business expects when it comes to successful customer engagement.

Join us for an important Disrupter Conversation, where you'll hear from some of the experts who are driving the next generation of customer experience in the enterprise. You'll come away with a new perspective and a vision for how you as a communications professional can engage your business unit colleagues and provide them with the channels they need to satisfy your end customers.

Thursday, March 20

9:00 AM – 10:00 AM
Summit: UC Management: Getting Your Arms Around the Challenge

With each passing year and each deployment, it becomes more and more clear that Unified Communications in most enterprises will be multi-vendor, multi-platform, multi-network, and multimedia. Is there any hope that those charged with monitoring and managing these diverse systems can make them work as a coherent whole and stay on top of the challenges and inevitable problems that occur?

In this session, representatives from network management vendors in a range of disciplines will discuss the prospects for systems management in the near term. They'll describe the best ways of pulling together configuration, reporting, and troubleshooting systems and somehow coming up with an approach that streamlines the management process to the greatest extent possible. They'll help you understand the best ways to manage legacy gear alongside new software and multiple vendors' systems together. They'll describe the most common management challenges that occur now, and what to expect as UC rolls out to more users within your network. And they'll describe how UC management will continue to evolve as new technologies like Software Defined Networks and WebRTC join existing disrupters like mobility and video as challenges to confront. You'll gain a perspective on how the discipline of network management is likely to evolve within your enterprise, and how you and your colleagues must evolve to meet the challenges.

10:00 AM – 11:00 AM
Communications Security: Report to the Industry
What’s the true state of communications security in 2014? Where are the most serious threats, and what is – and isn’t-- being done to stop them?

In this session, you’ll hear from leading experts, who will offer their real-world findings drawn from documented and observed operational attacks against U.S. enterprises and their contact centers, to give you a sense of what sorts of attacks pose the greatest risk to your communications, and which are still, at this stage, more distant prospects. You’ll come away with an understanding of the threats to fixed and mobile communications that should concern you most, and how to tackle them.

11:00 AM – 12:00 PM
To wrap up Enterprise Connect, join leading analysts and program Co-chairs Fred Knight and Eric Krapf for a conversation, analysis and debate over the major issues covered during the Conference. The issues to be covered in this Town Hall style session include the current state of Unified Communications and an assessment of its benefits and challenges; the viability of the Cloud as a deployment model for communications; the progress toward SIP Trunking and a New Public Network; issues around mobility; vendors’ positioning, strengths and weaknesses; and how emerging social networking functionality is being integrated into communications. Hear what the analysts have to say, and come prepared to share your questions, comments and perceptions.