Innovation at Enterprise Connect

by Dave Michels

We are ramping up for the SECOND ANNUAL INNOVATION SHOWCASE to take place at Enterprise Connect. 

I am so pleased to be a part of this and that it’s back. Last year, the event was a bit of a last minute idea so we had to scramble to make it happen. There was very little marketing related to the event as we wanted the right to be able to cancel it up to the very end.

Innovation Showcase is fairly broad and a fantastic opportunity. We want young innovative ideas that improve enterprise communications. That’s a mouthful, but it says it all. Before the show, we will select four companies to feature in the showcase. Each of the four will get an opportunity to present a short demo, get a booth, and get this – assistance toward travel costs. Good luck finding a better deal.

The rules are fairly simple, but let me elaborate:

  1. Product, service, or idea must be applicable to enterprise communications including, but not limited to, voice, messaging, collaboration, video, and mobility.
    Communications is rapidly becoming a broad term. Last year we had that focused on collaboration, Radish that provides a visual IVR of sorts on a mobile phone. The point is communications isn’t just about phones any more.  
  2. Submissions for the Innovation Showcase must be a new idea, product, or service as of March 1 2009. Applicants must reference at least one customer that is currently piloting or paying for the product or service. This enterprise reference must be an organization that employs over 250 people. Reference information must include a brief summary of how the product or service is used and contact information for verification. The reference account (and contact information) will not be publicly disclosed and does not need to attend Enterprise Connect 2012.
    The March 1 date is to highlight new products and services. That means the product or service will be, at the most, two years new. The company can be older, but the product or service should be new or significantly new. In order to make sure the product or service is suitable for an enterprise customer, we insist on a customer at an organization with 250 people or more. Note, this does not mean the deployment must be large – could even be a pilot, but the company doing the pilot has 250 or more employees. Basically we don’t want consumer apps.
  3. Applicants agree to staff the provided booth during exhibit hours and present their company, product and/or service during the Innovation Showcase session at Enterprise Connect 2012.
    You get a free booth, you better be in it. Not a bad deal considering how many CIOs and IT staff are roaming the show floor.  
  4. Submissions for the Innovation Showcase must have been submitted to the website by 11:59PM Eastern time, February 1, 2012.

Call for Judges

I need help in pulling this off, I need IT leadership volunteers to review the applicants and select the top four to be in the showcase. All the judging is done via teleconference in the first part of February. Judges do not need to attend the conference. Judges are public, but voting is not. If you are interested, please contact me directly.

More information: