Wow, I can't believe it's been over a month already since I joined Microsoft from ULCC as the new Education Marketing Manager for the UK. What an experience it's been so far! Great people, amazing products and a common desire to add real value to our customers. I feel extremely privileged to have joined a company I have long admired!
I just wanted to take this opportunity to introduce myself and send out a request for help. With Ray Fleming's recent departure to join Microsoft in Australia, and our desire to build on the great work that Ray and the rest of the team did with the education blogs, we want to ensure that we continue to add value to the community of readers around these resources.
With this in mind, what kind of content do you want to see more of here? Opinion pieces, industry news, tips, tricks and how to's? Give us your feedback in the comments below so that this blog can be as relevant to your needs as possible. Alternatively, send me your thoughts via Twitter to www.twitter.com/tbush.
Thanks in advance for taking the time to share!
Now, not wanting to make this post all about me and how you can help us, I also wanted to share some interesting updates and resources I have come across during my first month at Microsoft.
Partner Community Event
I was fortunate enough to be invited to a recent Partner Community event. The opening speaker at the event was Dale Bassett, Research Director at Reform, a policy institute promoting new directions for public policy. Within his presentation, Dale presented a really informative and useful overview of the key trends and challenges (political and technological) facing the education sector as a whole.
I will let his slides, embedded below, speak for themselves, but if you are looking for a snapshot of all the political, policy and technology trends currently impacting the sector, Dale's slides are a great resource to check out.
Get Online @ Home Programme
One of the initial projects I have been proud to be helping out with has been the ambitious Get Online @Home programme. Backed by Microsoft and partners such as BT, Post Office and Three.co.uk, the programme aims to support Martha Lane Fox's Race Online 2012 initiative to help get people online.
More specifically, the Get Online @Home programme looks to provide a “no nonsense” affordable PC, with all the right software, warranties and UK-based telephone helplines, to help beginners get online@home.
I have been assisting with the creation of the website copy for the project and its been great watching a wide selection of household brands come together to support such as amazing cause.
I look forward to following how this programme develops over the coming months!
Check out the website for more information.
Tips and Tricks Videos from the Live@EDU Team
The Live@EDU team have put together some great content to help staff and students get the most out of their Live@EDU experience. Addressing everything from getting started with Outlook Live to how to create memorable lectures with the PowerPoint Web App, there is something here for everyone. Well worth a look!
Tips and Tricks Videos:
Getting Started with Outlook Live
Outlook Live – Searching, Filtering, Auto Replies, Signatures
How To Articles:
PowerPoint Web App
OneNote Web App
Outlook Web App
Excel Web App
Word Web App
We have some big plans to make the education blogs a valuable resource for all. Your input is crucial in aligning the content we create to your needs. As mentioned earlier, it would be great to get any ideas or recommendations in the comments below.
Thanks again and look forward to some interesting dialogue across the various education blogs in the months to come.
Really the thing I'd like to see more of is simple: more of the same.
Resist the urge to change too much or introduce a raft of new types of content. I find the UK Schools blog to be a good source of information as it is, while in contrast, I've watched a few TechNet blogs in reent years go from solid sources of unique information to almost generic marketing blogs, and I stopped following them because they simply aren't useful any more.
Of course I realise that this is a marketing blog already, and you've said you have big plans so change is probably inevitable. In that case, my advice would be to keep the content distinct and original. If the information can be found elsewhere, try not to repost it. By all means signpost to related blogs, but don't go treading the path that the MDOP/App-V blogs have done, where I often end up reading the same post twice.
Thanks so much for the feedback. Much appreciated! Don't worry, the content of the blogs will definitely continue to be focused on creating valuable content for our community rather than posting marketing messsages.
Offering the ability for the community to contribute guest posts that share their experiences and insight etc, is also something I am keen to introduce. Let me know if you would be interested in kicking something off :)