At the beginning of 2018 Oriflame received an invitation to attend Microsoft Envision in Orlando. Envision takes place at the same time as a much larger and more familiar event called Microsoft Ignite (see our previous post). However, Envision is an exclusive, invitation-only event dedicated mainly for leaders to gain forward-thinking insights, got inspired by innovative solutions and discover actionable plans to realize business transformation.

Envision was opened with the keynote by Satya Nadela where he was presenting examples of digital transformation stories through various business sectors and it ended with a common announcement of CEOs of Adobe, SAP, and Microsoft about the Open Data Initiative. The keynote set the theme of the whole event which was mainly about the AI, Big Data and Digital Transformation.

Opening keynote with CEOs Satya Nadella (Microsoft), Shantanu Narayen (Adobe) and Bill McDermott (SAP)

There were many interesting discussions on the main stage with guests like Alexis Ohanian, Trevor Noah or Dr. Mae Jemison. Apart from them I’ve tried to put together my top three sessions:

1. How Microsoft uses artificial intelligence in marketing:Today and tomorrow
Charles Eichenbaum from Microsoft was showing how Microsoft uses AI for marketing. The session was describing Microsoft marketing chain beginning from acquiring the leads from various sources, through the machine learning model to their reaching via chatbots.

2.Becoming digital
Very inspiring session led by Judson Althoff from Microsoft presenting practical cases with guests from TD Bank and Carlsberg. TD Bank was showing how they utilize Dynamics 365 in the Customer Experience center. Later on, Carlsberg had a great demo full of innovations where they’ve presented how they brew and distribute beer in a digital age.

Carlsberg showing how they remotely control the quality of beer in restaurants

3.Making artificial intelligence (AI) in retail real:Lessons learned to achieve value with AI
Mariya Zorotovich from Microsoft interviewed Richard Wingfield from Majid Al Futtaim Ventures. Richard was describing how they approach innovations and how important it is for today’s retail. I especially liked the cases which they have used for measuring customer satisfaction and sentiment via emotions in their face which were tracked by cameras and evaluated before and after the shopping experience.

It was a great event and it gave us an enormous amount of inspiration and I would like to thank Microsoft HiPo team for the opportunity to attend.

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