One of the best things about working for Microsoft is the ability to further ones own knowledge. The sheer volume of learning opportunities is quite amazing. I am not allowed to talk about some of the specifics as I understand that these relate to confidential Microsoft IP but what I can say is that as a Microsoft employee I have an amazing variety of learning opportunities available to me. We have yearly training that we need to complete such as security, compliance and diversity issues. We also have continuous learning opportunities such as new product launch training materials (across all products) as well as elective web and class room training  such as negotiation, presentation, business and technical skills.

One of the highlights of the year for many of us is Tech Ready, a twice yearly event (February and July) that covers detailed aspects of all the Microsoft products, service and devices. This years Tech Ready (17) was my chance, and the following is a behind the scenes look of my trip. For clarity please be aware that I am unable to share any confidential content but I do hope that this post does give you a little more insight into the company. Further details on Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 (Orion) will be available imminently. What I can say is that there might be some small surprises and I think you are going to love the new product!

On this trip I had the please of travelling with my good friend (and trusted technical advisor!) Marco Amoedo Martinez. You can find his blog here. Marco and I decided to go a few days early to Seattle to spend some time on Campus and at the CRM offices in Advanta.

First things first, the trip on British Airways.

I managed to get myself an upgrade to World Traveller Plus (aka Premium Economy) thanks BA! Marco managed to get Club world (aka business) and so had a fully reclining seats. I was really pleased for him and not jealous at all! Fortunately I managed to improve the size of entertainment system by using the stand of my Surface RT to neatly slide into the pocket of the seat in front of me:


Microsoft Dynamics Offices – Advanta

We arrived late afternoon and so decided on an early night before picking up our car and driving to the Microsoft Dynamics offices in Advanta:

There we got so spend some time with with the product group, talk about plans for this year and how the product is progressing.

Microsoft Campus Redmond

The next day we made the trip to the main campus in Redmond which is a sight to behold. It is basically a small town. Complete with everything you could possible need! Shops, Restaurants, Mobile Phone shops, Gyms, banks etc. I had a meeting with the Financial Services lead and had the opportunity to talk about some of the most pressing issues in the industry, One for a future post!


Yes it a DeLorean. We were leaving campus going to our car when we came across this:


And yes it has a Flux Capatitor!

Tech Ready 17

By this point is was the weekend and we had an opportunity to visit Seattle and the surrounding areas. It is quite beautiful and if you haven’t been I highly encourage you to go. We had 10 days of sunshine, and great food.


Monday morning arrived it was time for breakfast with a few friends:


Breakfast at events like this are an experience, you can’t help but feel like herded animals! The foot isn’t too bad either. After breakfast it was time for the keynote:


Marco getting coffee and ready for his role as a speaker:


Huw Edmunds, David Reid and Helen day preparing for their presentation:


The party

Five days of training sessions later and the team was ready to have some fun (ok we might of gone out once or twice in the week). Where else to hold a 6,000 strong part but the Centuty Link football / soccer field in seattle. We had the chance to play football (proper football) as well as eat, sing and dance at the various events within the stadium. What an experience!


Before I go, here is an amazing shot from the plane on the way over (Hudson bay):


And that was it, an amazing learning experience, I cannot wait to go back, my head hurts with all the information gained and I am very excited about the new releases we have coming! Until next time!

This posting is provided “AS IS” with no warranties, and confers no rights.

Next on Mark Margolis’s Blog: CRM for Asset Management – An Overview