As defined by WhatIs.com, “In personal or business computing, a user group is a set of people who have similar interests, goals, or concerns. The members have regular meetings where they can share their ideas.” Most user groups are based around discussing certain technologies such as a specific software, application, or corporation. Typically, these user groups are based in a geographically common area, and with many of the popular user groups there’s one in all of the major cities.
Microsoft Office 365’s suite of technologies is constantly evolving. This software, and all its bells and whistles, is a very popular user group topic. In fact, there are loads of these groups throughout the entire world.
Here at Sierra, we resell Office 365 packages, as well as assisting with implementation and monitoring of the systems once they’re in place. So, we found it troubling that Pittsburgh didn’t have a successful Office 365 user group of its own. It became evident to us that we needed to implement one, and get the Pittsburgh community up to speed.
AND THE PITTSBURGH OFFICE 365 USER GROUP WAS BORN
Partnered with Barracuda Networks, the Sierra team got to work creating a website (www.PghO365.com) and social media platforms (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Meetup) to get the word out. A promotional plan was put into place to draw Pittsburgh IT professionals to register and attend our first event in September 2017.
We were pleasantly surprised with the initial reaction we got from the Pittsburgh crowd. It was clear to us that the creation of this group had been a long time coming.
WHAT A TURNOUT!
The first event was held at Microsoft’s corporate office in downtown Pittsburgh. What better place to discuss Office 365 than at Microsoft itself? On Wednesday, September 20th, people began to trickle into the conference room and in no time the room filled up!
The first event was meant to lay a framework, and give the attendees a general idea of what to expect. However, a great first discussion took place where each attendee introduced themselves, explained their experience (or lack thereof) with Office 365, and asked questions/made comments they had.
Also, when attending these events, a catered lunch is provided, and you get a chance to win some giveaways! The first event was catered by Moe’s Southwest Grill, and everybody really enjoyed the taco bar. Then, Sierra gave away discounted services and Barracuda had some great branded items like Bluetooth speakers and fidget spinners.
Overall, the first event was a huge success and everybody was very excited for the future of the user group.
WHEN’S THE NEXT EVENT?
The next event is officially planned to take place on Wednesday, January 17th. For the next event, we’ve expanded our sponsorship to include New Horizons Computer Learning Center, and they graciously offered to hold the event at their office in Greentree.
You can learn more information about the next event here.
Don’t forget to sign up if it seems like something you’re interested in that could benefit you and your company. 2018 will be here before you know it, so don’t miss out on being a part of a new Pittsburgh community of IT professionals. These groups are also a fantastic way to network and gain business contacts.
If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out, and we hope to see you in January!
Sierra Experts is an IT Managed Service and Support provider, specializing in IT Monitoring and Management, Cloud/Virtual Systems, Hosting, VoIP/SIP PBX Trunks and Solutions, Physical Server Hosting, Website Design and Development, Software Development, and Hardware and Software reselling. For more, check out www.SierraExperts.com.