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Like many other events in 2020, Sitecore went virtual with this year’s Symposium. Instead of spending time in Orlando or Las Vegas, we saw all of Sitecore’s familiar faces on our screens, as we heard exciting announcements, saw cool new launches, and learned the latest ways we can help our clients leverage Sitecore in their digital marketing.

Here are our key takeaways from Sitecore Symposium:

A Focus on Content Authors in Content Hub:

The biggest takeaway for me was the importance of owning the entire process of content creation and delivery. Too often clients’ “offline” editorial process is chaotic and disorganized. Resources who just need to provide pure content are navigating site trees and complex workflows in the XP platform. Content Hub can help meet these resources where they are and bring more structure to the pre-production process. The content author experience clearly doesn’t begin with Content Editor and Experience Editor. — Dan Murphy

I loved seeing Content Hub applied to complex business modeling use cases. This tool looks like it can solve a lot of really tough problems. — Dan Solovay

>> Download our guide to Sitecore personalization

Familiar Faces and Leaders:

I enjoyed seeing Jake and Paige for lessons on margaritas, cooking, and making small talk. It felt like being back with old friends. I was inspired by the things other people in the community are doing, like creating a JSS commerce storefront or building client-side real-time Sitecore personalization.

Also, I loved hearing Leslie Odom Jr. tell us about how he created the Aaron Burr character in Hamilton and listening to him sing. Shades for the win!

 — Dan Solovay

Announcements from a New CEO

Meeting the new CEO, Steve Tzikakis was also a highlight. Some things were expected, like the emphasis on SaaS, but some things were not, like basing Sitecore compensation around the Net Promoter Score to ensure customer satisfaction drives decisions. And hearing the commitment to the role of partners was good. As Jake Johannsen observed, "if your partner competes with you, what kind of partner is that?" — Dan Solovay

Containerized Docker solutions are the future and soon will replace Azure PaaS solutions. – Alessandro Faniuolo

There was a lot of emphasis on the maturing AI capabilities of Sitecore – I’m excited to work with it! — Diane O’Connell

More Advanced Sessions for Developers

Last year the technical sessions showed how to develop with containers. This year the audience was ready for the next step: to learn how to deploy and monitor containerized solutions in production. This is going to be the next big challenge for many companies. — Alessandro Faniuolo

Another rendering engine option is becoming available: Core. This adds to the existing Sitecore MVC, SXA, and JSS options, so we’ll need to investigate which one is the best fit for the infrastructure and authoring process for each individual project. Gone are the days of only Microsoft web forms or XSLT. — Diane O’Connell

Velir’s Representation

Really loved the A Teams with the Sitecore Tech Evangelists. This felt almost like a mini-MVP summit. It was a great Q&A opportunity, and awesome to hear our colleague Alessandro Faniuolo's WFFM converter called out by the Sitecore team. — Dan Solovay

Velir’s Sessions

  • How to leverage content technology to drive value with Urban Land Institute and Garrett Grant, VP of Client Services
  • Leveraging external data services to get more out of Sitecore personalization with Erica Stockwell-Alpert, Sitecore MVP and Production Support Developer
  • How to simplify your shopping experience with Sitecore Commerce and Coveo with the Institute of Food Technologists and Matt Richardson, Principal Business Systems Analyst

We have been attending Sitecore Symposium and working with clients on their Sitecore solutions since 2006. Even though this year’s Symposium didn’t let us see each other in person, we were still excited to learn about the latest Sitecore has to offer. And, we’re already looking forward to what we’ll see at next year’s Sitecore Symposium.

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