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OSICON 2020: Connect, Learn, and Grow in Unprecedented Times

With OSICON 2020 just days away, taking place Thursday, November 5th, from 8:00 am – 4:00 pm PST, we couldn’t be more excited. The annual conference is designed for business and technology leaders using open source enterprise solutions. Our goal is to help attendees increase their knowledge by sharing best practices, thought leadership, and technical skills that improve organizational performance and maintain a competitive advantage.

We want to show how open source ERP can help businesses survive and thrive in today’s challenging economic climate. We’ve brought together a global lineup of business customers, guess speakers, and OSI experts to provide value-added knowledge transfer. Attendees will have a rich array of presentations and panels to improve their business, from production to packaging, the supply chain, site selection, field services, and more.

Moreover, here are five reasons why this year is special:

  1. Create a community by sharing your experiences and offering ideas and support for each other.
  2. Build resiliency into your organization to respond to “black swan” events now and well into the future
  3. Improve both business and IT functions with two tailored tracks that provide rich content and lively panel discussions
  4. Find innovative open and free solutions to solve critical problems during these uncertain times.
  5. Recognize unsung leaders and visionaries that have advanced the technology for everyone

But make no mistake, we have higher ambitions for this year’s event. Because I believe that now more than ever, we need to connect, share, and rally together. Let me explain what I mean.

The power of community

We are all facing unprecedented times, with an uncertain economic climate impacted by a global pandemic. We are doing our part to sacrifice and fight COVID-19. That involves stay-at-home orders, business restrictions, and mandates meant to limit the disease’s spread and protect each other and our loved ones.

I believe this is a seminal moment in our history, and the importance of engagement, encouragement, and coming together has never been more critical. Though our personal and professional needs and circumstances differ, we have common ground for everyone to communicate, collaborate, and mutually benefit. With its flexibility, freedom, and community-based approach, the very nature of open source provides practical reasons for all of us to band together and do great things collectively to overcome adversity.

To that end, we designed OSICON 2020 to help OSI customers and business leaders interested in learning more about the value of open source to connect with others experiencing the same challenges virtually.

Resiliency

explored

The theme of OSICON 2020 centers around business resiliency and explores how companies – regardless of size, industry, or location – can build effective strategies to thrive during adversity in the era of the global COVID-19 pandemic, as well as future “black swan” events. I believe the conference will give attendees the chance to learn from business successes and past mistakes, from real customers doing fantastic work, to building resiliency into their organization, including preparing for future “black swan” events like COVID-19.

Now is the perfect time for us to develop a resiliency strategy because it allows us to adapt to the current challenges and opportunities present during times of substantial disruption. With the right business resiliency strategy, manufacturing, retail, food, and beverage, utilities, and services (from ISPs to flooring to home security) sectors can benefit. Whether it’s pivoting production lines to meet changing demands or shifting business priorities to serve customers online and execute a digital sales strategy, companies can leverage business resiliency to develop new approaches and improve existing processes.

Open solutions for any challenge

I’m proud to say OSI customers are achieving outstanding results in these challenging times. Based on the talks I’ve had with customers across the country and worldwide, from a 300-year-old family-run business to entrepreneurial startups to global Fortune 100 companies, most if not all will finish 2020 with higher revenues. And we’ve brought many of these customers to share their work with attendees.

We are taking the time to promote awareness around their awesome, innovative, results-oriented integrations representing the many ways people can use open source. These projects and initiatives represent the gamut of how our customers are succeeding with resilient strategies, while other companies struggle to adapt to the current environment.

Open solutions for any challenge

This year we wanted to provide two specific tracks designed to benefit both sides of the organization: the business and the technical. Whether it’s learning the very latest about Odoo Version 14, best practices in integrating disparate systems, or lessons learned from building new business models or releasing new products, there is something for two distinct audiences.

Perhaps one of the most significant value-adds for this year’s event, and something we are incredibly excited about, is the OSI virtual lobby. Available all day throughout the conference, the virtual lobby allows attendees to meet with an OSI technical expert or professional services consultant to ask their individual questions.

OSI staff are ready to answer your questions. Staff will be on-hand throughout the day, available to discuss topics that include:

Recognizing unsung leaders

Especially with lockdowns and the sense of isolation that they inherently create, the need for leadership now is tremendous. At OSI, we see our customers doing work that has a significant impact on the global community. More often than not, these are businesses not recognized, yet they can give us all a sense of wonder and gratitude because they keep operating to fulfill the needs of others.

We want to recognize and salute these organizations, so this is the inaugural year for OSI to give customer awards. We will honor innovative projects, next-generation integrations, and more. Selected by OSI IT and business staff, the awards will showcase the work done using open source to improve accounting, manufacturing, services, ecommerce, CRM, sales and product forecasting, data analytics, and many other areas. We believe it will inspire us all to see how these businesses make an impact on their bottom line and community.

You’ll have fun too

I don’t want to give away too much, but I can say there will be opportunities for attendees to have fun. We are going digital with the concept of “happy hour,” with a virtual mixologist available at the end of the day to share “insider secrets” to the art of making a few fantastic beverages.

They will impart their exciting discipline that combines an appreciation of classic cocktails and cocktail culture to create new recipes with a forward-thinking culinary approach. Attendees will have the chance to learn some new recipes that they can take with them and enjoy with friends and family.

We can’t wait to connect

2020 has been an odd year to say the least. Give the human toll the we’ve experienced over the last several months, we’ve all had to adapt and change to circumstances as they evolve. Yet it’s vital to think of black swan events like the global pandemic as something that can be modeled to build resilient strategies. We can test ideas now, even while we are in the middle of an event, to build a plan to respond as well as prepare for the next major event.

This is why small and midsized businesses with modest resources, as well as global enterprises with massive investments at stake, need to be all the more resilient­ – so they won’t be held hostage by history because they have the right strategies already in place. OSICON 2020 is our opportunity to work with our customers and attendees to develop those plans to survive and grow. It’s a gateway into the community, knowledge, skills, resources, and tools available to you today.

Everyone at OSI is excited to share and learn more with you on this. That’s why we designed OSICON 2020. See you soon.

About the author:

Greg Mader is the founder and president of Open Source Integrators (OSI), a global leader in open source business consulting and IT services. He’s an Army Veteran and entrepreneur, adept at managing large teams and complex projects, delivered on time and budget. His background includes leading and developing large and small teams, with a focus on communication, mission relevance, and improved deliveries. His expertise spans across strategic planning, project management, ERP, GIS, and other enterprise technologies.

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