While ProAV Day of LAVNCH WEEK 3.0 went exceedingly well (if you missed it, catch up here), we have to say we were equally excited about Wednesday’s End User Day. End users are a passionate and devoted audience in AV, UCC and Digital Signage, involved in verticals from higher ed to corporate to events and more.
Ready for another recap?
Transitioning Back to the Workplace: An Actual Tech Blueprint for Getting Offices and Schools Open
The day kicked off with a bang as we welcomed industry veterans Dr. S. Ann Earon (president at Telemanagement Resources International; founding chairperson of IMCCA) and Michael Goldman (principal at Communications Design Associates; board member of IMCCA) for the day’s keynote. The two tag-teamed a discussion on something I think we’re all pretty passionate about here: buildings, people and technology. We are recapping this full session via a separate [PUBS] article, so be on the lookout! (We will link that story here when it’s up.)
Kayye’s Krystal Ball 2021 (But Deliver It Live)
If you were in the audience for End User Day on Wednesday, you were one of two groups who had the opportunity to catch the 21st annual Kayye’s Krystal Ball delivered live.
Deciding what to buy, what to specify and how to design systems is always challenging, considering that the average product life cycle in the ProAV market is 16 months. For more than 20 years (yes, that’s more than two decades), rAVe Founder Gary Kayye has written a predictions piece called Kayye’s Krystal Ball to try to help navigate this challenge.
In it, he sets forth what he thinks will happen in the upcoming year with AV, UCC and Digital Signage technology. Kayye also revisits his predictions from the previous year: What did he get right and wrong in 2020? This session offered a live version of all that — aimed at making sure the end users at LAVNCH WEEK 3.0 make the right decisions, budgeting and planning appropriately, as we come out of COVID-19. We learned how to be mindful of picking the right products, also noting which products and technology to stay away from.
And most importantly, in this presentation (the audience poll results are in):
The next session of LAVNCH WEEK 3.0 came as back-to-back, unscripted one-on-ones, 10 minutes each, between Gary Kayye and industry leaders. End User Day “Unscripted” guests included Victoria Cerami (Cerami & Associates), Jennifer Cheh (Sharp/NEC), Kevin Collins (Diversified), Nick Swayne (James Madison University X-Labs), Adele Thornton (Synergy SKY) and John Zettel (AVI-SPL). You can be sure we’ll bring you more events like these in the future, because unfiltered conversations are the best. On that note, there will be further coverage on Gary’s “Unscripted” sessions from Wednesday. So, more to come!
How AV Is Helping Us Reopen
The AV market happens to be the market that can help businesses, schools and the hospitality industry reopen for business. But instead of rAVe telling you what’s going to happen in 2022 or 2023, we left it to the experts of Wednesday’s End User Day panel. This was a great group of panelists who are designing and specifying AV, UCC and digital signage systems right now. They shared their personal experiences of the products, technology and processes helping their clients open up again. The panel lineup:
- Moderator: Chris S. Mangrum (USAV)
- Panelists: Christine Lanning (Integrated Security Technologies), Aaron Miller (Rahi Systems), Jesse Miller (Midtown Video), Joe Perez (ClearTech Media) and Patrick Whipkey (USAV)
— rAVe [PUBS] (@rAVePubs) February 10, 2021
Some of the questions posed:
- What are the priorities as we’re opening back up for work? Priority number one is going to be safety, Perez said. “Safety’s going to be first when it comes to returning to work.” That could mean touchless or voice-driven technologies to help staff members keep that distance. It could also mean more flexible spaces for customers so they can still collaborate but with fewer people in one space.
- What about security? In the security business specifically, Lanning said her firm is concerned with cautioning clients to ensure they’re thinking through whether a new technology will add value a year from now. Do we really need these technologies, and what problems could they create? (For example, a lot of thermal-detection scanners bring privacy concerns.) The worst thing you want to do as an integrator is suggest a solution clients won’t need in the future, Lanning added. Technology is just one piece of it; policy is another, and policy is equally as important as something like a people-counting sensor.
- What discussions are you having to deliver better experiences? Jesse Miller added that last year was more than just an interruption in the way we (used to) do things; it was a catalyst for permanent change. Maybe we won’t rush back to in-person meetings, Miller said, so his firm is consulting with organizations to arm their hybrid-remote workforce with higher-quality equipment, promoting mastery of the equipment.
- What changes are you seeing as a global IT/AV solutions provider? Aaron Miller, focused more on the managed-services side, says he’s focused more than ever on remote support and services, getting away from having to go to the site unless it’s absolutely necessary. That means tools customers are very excited about, tools that take the whole AV environment and put it on the network. We can provide a much better monitoring service remotely too, Miller added, because we can monitor it 24/7 through the NOC. With this comes better data/analytics on how rooms and technology are being used too.
- What are you hearing in regards to new solutions for end users, no longer looking at it as just AV or just security or just IT? Whipkey is seeing integrators work with teams to say, What do these organizations need that aren’t in the rooms currently? It’s more than just adding a webcam to a room. It’s about air quality, how many people are in the space, etc. and how technology can enable that information. Touchless technology and digital signage are key to providing this sense of safety. How do we recreate the comfort of the home-working experience when we return to the office?
This was a great panel, with many key takeaways offered in real time (and too many good ones to recap in full). But it’s all captured here. Rewatch!
HETMA Spring Conference: Equipment Security Panel
Surprise! A session of LAVNCH WEEK 3.0 you might not have expected. We teamed up with the Higher Education Technology Managers Association to bring you the Equipment Security Panel, live-streamed on the LAVNCH platform as a part of the HETMA spring 2021 virtual conference. In this live session, we learned from tech managers working through the challenges of hybrid teaching and learning in higher ed, specifically addressing security as a key concern. To get their key takeaways, rewatch the tech manager panel here.
Sponsor Shoutouts + Review the Archives
Last but not least, if you missed the detailed sponsor features from End User Day supporters Pexip and Bluescape, you can catch them again by logging into the LAVNCH WEEK 3.0 End User Day page.
That’s a wrap on End User Day of #LAVNCHweek 3.0. Thank you to our presenters, panelists and all you #AVtweeps for making this day a huge success. Did you miss LAVNCH WEEK 3.0? No worries. While it is too late to get AVIXA CTS RUs for this event, it’s not too late to register to view the great content via the show archives.