Tambellini Cloud Summit 2019

Principal Analyst

Top of Mind: Tambellini Cloud Summit 2019
Estimated Reading Time: 3 minutes

The Tambellini Cloud Transformation Summit took place December 4–6 in the greater Boston area. On the heels of a snowstorm, more than 80 attendees shared best practices, participated in workshops, and learned from their peers how and why institutions are moving to the cloud.

The Tambellini Group hosted three world-class keynote speakers who started each day with inspiring sessions. While different in their experiences, each spoke about the future of artificial intelligence and the profound changes that AI is having on society and our future.

  • Mark Pollock is working with researchers to advance science and AI to address his disability, with the hope of walking again.
  • Tom Koloupolous spoke about the future of cloud computing in higher education. Tom imagines a frictionless future in which institutions focus on serving students and all systems are in the cloud.
  • Tim Urban presented AI as part of a future in which machine-to-machine communication is all-controlling and the pace of change is mind-blowing.

With the backdrop of such inspiration to start each day, Summit participants were presented with sessions that drew on the themes of digital transformation, identity and access management, student success, and much more. See below for some key take-aways.

Innovation and Insights

  • The move from technology to institutional enablement supported by technology is underway at the institutions that presented and attended. Institutions are clearly thinking about how to integrate the IT organization, not just the CIO, into the business of education—to develop meaningful, personalized, and actionable engagement across the community.
  • Education technology solution providers and deployment partners are investing time and effort into further understanding the developing data models, best practices, and pre-configuration options to get started in new and advanced uses of technology.
  • Institutions understand the need to move from on-premises applications to the cloud. Remaining challenges include initiative oversight, change management (including business processes), staffing during and after deployment, data management, meaningful analytics, uncertainty about the maturity of cloud student solutions, resources (both human and financial), and appropriate access.
  • Major vendors now include AI and machine learning in their product development. Data is at the core of these solutions, and AI is limited by current data storage capacity. This is a problem to be solved.
  • Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) provides a solution for institutions that have multiple telephony systems; UCaaS offers integrated collaboration options in a single platform. Solutions that incorporate voice, video, IM, voicemail, web conferencing, chat rooms, and document-sharing can benefit institutions in a variety of ways, including reduced cost, mobility, the ability to scale up and down, and usage analytics.
  • Institutions have relied on CRM systems as strategic platforms for engagement and for redesigning the student experience, and institutions are starting to move from departmental CRMs to enterprise-wide CRMs that support the entire student lifecycle from recruitment and admissions to alumni.
  • AI, machine learning, and underlying data are essential for personalizing interactions with students and alerting institutions about risk factors.
  • Higher education is starting to see engagement permeate beyond just CRMs to include analytics and tight integrations with student systems; and learning management system (LMS) vendors are delivering products to engage people over their lifetime in learning and within their community. 

Identity and Access Management

IAM—defined as appropriate access to the systems, tools, and resources for the right reasons at the right time—can be easily misunderstood regarding both its use and need. IAM includes provisioning and de-provisioning to core ERP and ancillary systems.

  • Higher education is at the beginning stages of the IAM maturity model. Common challenges include multiple personas, hybrid environments, balance between proper access and protection of assets, documentation, and fractured systems.
  • AI and machine learning will assist with defining and adjusting appropriate access and with identifying inappropriate access and toxic access combinations. 
  • Institutions deploying IAM solutions face many of the same issues and challenges as with core ERP deployments. These include proper planning, staffing, change management, and policy review.

Student Success

  • For all institutions, a personal connection between student and staff is critical for engagement and success, regardless of definition. The model must be changed from functionally centered to people centered. 
  • Generation Z students have different expectations than previous generations of students. The student experience must be mobile, and it begins with a student’s first interaction with an institution. While mobile has been on the minds of institutions for a while, they are also adopting internal social platforms and the use of live-agent chat and chatbots to increase engagement. Institutions must understand how each defines success.

The first Tambellini Cloud Transformation Summit delivered market-leading insights, sparked lively conversations, and created opportunities for collaboration. We would like to thank all of our speakers, presenters, and attendees for an exciting and inspiring three days. See you next year!

Special Thanks to the Tambellini Cloud Summit Sponsors

The Tambellini Group would like to give special thanks to our sponsors who helped make the event possible and contributed their expertise to our agenda.

Main Sponsors

  • Oracle
  • Workday

Session Sponsors

  • 20/20 Teknology
  • Avaap
  • Campus Management
  • Deloitte
  • Huron
  • Jenzabar
  • SailPoint
  • Salesforce
  • Saviynt
  • TargetX

Meal Sponsors

  • Collaborative Solutions
  • Sierra-Cedar

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Principal Analyst
Vicki Tambellini, CEO and founder of the Tambellini Group, has more than 30 years of experience and is an award-winning software company executive, author, blogger, consultant, guest-speaker, and entrepreneur. She has received numerous awards and honors from companies including PeopleSoft, Oracle, and NCR. Vicki has been a guest speaker at SACUBO, the Oracle HEUG, ELearning! Summit Events, Smart Woman’s Network, Richmond Venture Forum, and numerous private venues. Vicki founded Tambellini Group in 2001.

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