Yesterday afternoon, I gave a presentation at Info360. This is the 12thtime I have attended this conference, and the sixth time I have been a presenter. We have been informed that this is the final year the show will include a reference to AIIM Expo. Yeah, yeah, the show was sold to Questex a long time ago, legal agreements, blah blah blah… who cares? Questex has done a remarkable job with this show, and the people have been wonderful to deal with as an attendee and as a presenter. In fact, for most of the time I have been attending this conference and for all of the years I have been a presenter, Questex has been in charge. I enjoy coming to this show and I plan to continue coming in the future.
I will have a hard time disassociating AIIM from Info360, because this is where I was introduced to AIIM. I attended the show in New York; actually, I should say I attended the exhibit hall. My first trip was just to poke my head in and look at all the content management stuff – stuff that in that era, I knew I couldn’t afford. Even if I couldn’t go home with a six-figure document management system, I went home better informed. I started attending AIIM NE chapter meetings, and I started paying to attend the full show the very next year. I hope Questex remains successful with this show, because I think it’s important; I think it’s necessary. Without this show, I have to choose to learn about SharePoint, or Collaboration, or Enterprise Content Management, or Business Process Management. Here, I can learn about all those subjects under one roof.
I know there are SharePoint conferences that include those topics, but sometimes, it is nice to hear about these subjects without the SharePoint slant. It’s nice to have your thinking challenged by Google or Box.com and it’s helpful to hear about real-world implementations that solve problems, with or without SharePoint. I listened to a presentation yesterday about ECM at Saudi Aramco, they use SharePoint, but in a small way, next to a bunch of other systems, all talking to Documentum. I gained a perspective on ECM that I don’t think I would get at a SharePoint conference, and I think it will help me in the future. I also listened to a presentation by Marriott where I learned valuable lessons about controlling content as you bring users into the world of content management and design. They don’t use SharePoint, but the lessons are still valid, and these are lessons I will be applying soon. I also spoke with a few people like me, people in small shops, wearing many hats.
Those of us who build, maintain and administer SharePoint, especially those of us in small domains, need to be comfortable in many worlds. We need to speak the languages of design, architecture, administration and development, and we need to be fluent in several. We need to understand the various disciplines that SharePoint supports, in order to better utilize SharePoint. AIIM remains the best organization for education around these subjects, and I think Info360 will remain the best place to get it all under one roof. See you next year! #questex #AIIM #aiimexpo #Education #training #info360 #ECM