Since 1999, Microsoft has partnered with us to produce Inspire. Inspire is Microsoft’s premier annual gathering for their partner community.
In 2017, this four-day conference was held in Washington, D.C. Partners converge in a new North American city each year to build relationships with peers and Microsoft counterparts, gain valuable business knowledge, and exchange innovative ideas. For 2017, Microsoft’s goal was to maintain the flawless execution of the conference while still infusing a personal touch.
In 2017, Microsoft took over Washington, D.C.—starting at the Washington Dulles International Airport and Reagan Airport as Microsoft was determined to welcome their event attendees the moment they touched down in the city. The Opus team deployed convenient terminal check-in locations so attendees could pick up their conference badge immediately upon arrival. Beyond the airports, the event footprint spanned the Walter E. Washington Convention Center and the Verizon Center. Attendee lodging accommodations spanned 50 surrounding hotels. Microsoft was in town, and it was hard to miss.
The event team implemented spaces where attendees of all types could find a comfortable and welcoming place within the massive event. The popular “First-Time Attendee” program was created to immerse Inspire’s first-timers into the existing partner community and maximize the value of their experience through orientation, sessions, and alumni mentors. “The Commons” was an innovative approach to the traditional expo hall. It served as an area where attendees could eat, network, socialize, and consume content in an intimate “TED Talk” style format.
In 2017, Inspire attracted over 17,900 attendees from over 140 countries. The Opus team managed logistics for three keynotes, 25 general sessions, 193 breakout sessions, 563 interactive sessions and workshops, 600+ side meetings, and one final attendee celebration at National’s Park, featuring Carrie Underwood.