Even though Office and SharePoint 2010 haven’t been released yet, there are a number of Canadian companies piloting early adopter projects using the beta applications to enhance corporate collaboration, enable management of content and use business intelligence to drive better company decisions. And there are a number of Microsoft Partners helping them design, plan, pilot and deploy these solutions.

On the AlignIT cross-Canada tour, Damir and I were joined by local Microsoft partners in 7 of the 8 cities we visited and took the opportunity to showcase their expertise and the SharePoint 2010 and Office 2010 client projects they’re working on. In addition, we recorded the Q&A discussions where a panel of partners plus a few Microsofties took questions from the audience.

Below are links to the recordings from each city along with an outline of the topics covered. Each recording is between 20 – 30 minutes long. Have a listen!

Halifax

Unfortunately, we didn’t think to record the Q&A sessions until after our Halifax stop. However, these are the local partners that joined us and shared their expertise with the audience.

Partners:

 T4GInfotech

Panelists:

  • Fred Yeomans, T4G
  • Amanda Perran, InfoTech

Winnipeg

Click to download MP3 (20 min)
media player play button

During this Q&A session, we cover the following topics:

  • Release date for Visual Studio 2010
  • Cutting and pasting from a document that has been made into a record
  • SharePoint security and Active Directory – how documents secured and managed
  • The framework used for Imaginet’s records management project with Manitoba Hydro
  • The infrastructure for the Manitoba Hydro project
  • New advancements in SharePoint & Office 2010: the ribbon interface, multiple Exchange accounts in Outlook, SharePoint integration with Visual Studio 2010, Silverlight development with SharePoint, the Outlook social connector
  • Options to evaluate SharePoint 2010
  • Pricing & licensing for SharePoint 2010

Partner:

Imaginet 

Panelists:

  • David Wood, Imaginet
  • Damir Bersinic, Microsoft
  • Jason Brommet, Microsoft
  • Moderator: Ruth Morton, Microsoft

Calgary

 

Click to download MP3 (18 min)
media player play button

During this Q&A session, we cover the following topics:

  • Bug tracking software solutions
  • Using Office Communications Server in conjunction with old phone systems
  • Scheduling document change notifications for users in SharePoint
  • Release dates for SharePoint 2010 and Office 2010
  • What people are excited about with the 2010 products: Silverlight applications and VS2010 integration, updated Web Parts, document search, ribbon interface, new logging features in SharePoint 2010, social enterprise features, fast search capabilities
  • SharePoint 2010 sandbox functionality
  • Browser support for SharePoint and Silverlight
  • Functionality and compatibility with earlier versions of Office
  • Compatibility view for determining best upgrade path

Partners:

Imaginet HabaneroKnowledgeTech  

Panelists:

  • David Wood, Imaginet
  • Jason McIntyre, Habanero Consulting Group
  • Ron De Giusti, KnowledgeTech
  • Jason Brommet, Microsoft
  • Damir Bersinic, Microsoft
  • Moderator: Ruth Morton, Microsoft

Vancouver

Click to download MP3 (22 min)
media player play button

During this Q&A session, we cover the following topics:

  • What about SharePoint 2010 and Office 2010 is most compelling for organizations: enterprise social networking, merging of business needs with IT needs, self-service environment, use of Office as familiar front-end to SharePoint capabilities
  • How Branch Cache works with SharePoint server
  • Migrating capabilities to move from SharePoint 2007 to SharePoint 2010
  • The availability of Office 2010 Web Apps as a cloud service
  • Sandboxing for SharePoint
  • Faxing capabilities in Office Communications Server
  • Release dates
  • Options for auto-tagging documents
  • The future of ProClarity (PerformancePoint) in SharePoint
  • Access services in SharePoint 2010
  • Workflows
  • Office document version compatibility moving from Office 2003 to Office 2010
  • Collaborative co-authoring of documents

Partners:

Habanero   T4GSoftlanding

Panelists:

  • Brian Edwards, Habanero Consulting Group
  • Richard Kunz, T4G
  • Shaun Roberts, Softlanding Network Solutions
  • Jason Brommet, Microsoft
  • Moderator: Ruth Morton, Microsoft

Ottawa

Click to download MP3 (25 min)
media player play button

 

During this Q&A session, we cover the following topics:

 

  • Multi-lingual user interface in SharePoint 2010 and the differences with SharePoint 2007
  • Roadmap for Silverlight with regards to HTML5
  • Backend infrastructure needed to support PowerPivot
  • SharePoint 2007 migration to SharePoint 2010
  • Document management systems and integrating LiveLink with SharePoint
  • What organizations need to think about before jumping into an business productivity implementation project
  • Product release dates
  • Upgrade path from beta to release product
  • Ways to control where documents are being stored by end users
  • Advances in SharePoint 2010 development such as the integration with Visual Studio 2010

Partner:

Orangutech 

Panelists:

  • Mike Maadarani, Orangutech
  • Damir Bersinic, Microsoft
  • Matt Wolodarsky, Microsoft
  • Moderator: Ruth Morton, Microsoft

Montreal

Click to download MP3 (19 min)
media player play button

 

In Montreal, we didn’t have the opportunity to have local partners join us, however, we did have a lively Q&A panel session with Matt and Damir. In this Q&A session, we cover the following topics:

 

  • Incorporating live data into documents
  • Communication methods using notes in SharePoint 2010
  • Best practises for incorporating the different capabilities
  • How to incorporate users that are mobile or remote (for example, at customer sites)
  • Project management processes that Project Server 2010 supports
  • The future of business productivity technology
  • Licensing for Office Web Apps
  • Workflow design
  • Hidden games or Easter eggs in Office 2010
  • Accessing Access databases simultaneously

Panelists:

  • Damir Bersinic, Microsoft
  • Matt Wolodarsky, Microsoft
  • Moderator: Ruth Morton, Microsoft

Mississauga

[updated April 19, 2010 with recording and discussion details]

Click to download MP3 (30 min)
media player play button

During this Q&A session, we cover the following topics:

  • The search-ability of SharePoint notes and other social aspects
  • What happens when you make changes to files marked as records
  • Using SharePoint and file shares at the same time and how to manage documents in that situation
  • Advice for organizations looking to start a business productivity platform
  • How quickly you can see benefits from a document management solution
  • How IT can influence top-down executive buy-in
  • What can be done to make BI implementation projects effective
  • Creating triggers in process workflows
  • The opportunities for small businesses
  • Out of the box capabilities for auditing for corporate compliance requirements
  • Co-authoring and other capabilities with older versions of the Office clients

Partners:

T4GNetDexterity 

EnvisionIT 

Panelists:

  • Rob Munro, T4G Limited
  • Hugo Bernier, NetDexterity
  • Peter Carson, Envision IT
  • Jason Brommet, Microsoft
  • David Remmer, Microsoft
  • Moderator: Ruth Morton, Microsoft

Markham

Click to download MP3 (30 min)
media player play button

During this Q&A session, we cover the following topics:

  • Global file type standards
  • Business intelligence technology compatibility and integration
  • GreatPlains integration with SharePoint
  • What capabilities are included in SharePoint Foundation (previously called WSS) and what is included in full blown SharePoint
  • The migration path to SharePoint 2010
  • Integration of Dymanics CRM and SharePoint
  • Why customers are looking at using SharePoint 2010: integration with Office Web Apps, future business needs, being able to work at home, better blogging and my sites integration, search capabilities
  • Business Connectivity Services and Excel Services
  • The future of BizTalk
  • Cloud computing services from Microsoft

Partners:

Compugen nonlinear  image 

Panelists:

  • Greg Larnder, Compugen
  • Shannon Ryan, non-linear creations
  • Richard Carson, Concept Interactive Inc
  • David Remmer, Microsoft
  • Moderator: Damir Bersinic, Microsoft

For additional AlignIT tour resources including the presentation slides and other supplemental materials, check out www.microsoft.ca/alignitresources.