Today I am in Oxford, “the City of dreaming spires”, working with my team on some new product enhancements. It is a perfect place, despite its ancient history, for thinking about the future. Oxford is world famous for the university and its creative output. I drove up yesterday after a few days at Ditton Manor, a location that dates back almost a thousand years. At the Manor this week we held our first ever EMEA Customer Council and our first for a long time EMEA Customer Event.
The Council is a forum for a select group of senior leaders from our customer base to interact with the Nimsoft executive team in an open and transparent manner. Following the inaugural Council in the US held last year and conscious of the cultural and language differences in EMEA, there were some concerns that the interaction would be muted by comparison to the US event. Those concerns proved to be unfounded. The interaction levels were high; the transparency was crystal clear and the exchange of information and opinion of the highest order. We are very grateful for the input that our customers give us and we are also grateful for any positive criticism – the Council is not a marketing event and we expected and received a good dose of critical guidance. The Nimsoft team took some solid action points from the meeting.
The day following the Council was the EMEA Customer Event. Over 120 attendees turned up which caught us by surprise as it represented about 98% of the registered number of attendees. We usually expect at least 20% no shows so more chairs were needed in the auditorium. At one point in the day I asked the audience about their countries of residence and was encouraged by the range of countries that were represented. Nimsoft has spread significantly in geographical reach in the last couple of years.
As to the content, we had three great customer presentations: one very large Enterprise using Nimsoft to monitor over 27,000 servers; one medium sized Managed Service Provider using Nimsoft in innovative ways to monitor network, server, access, power, environmental and other devices; and one Finnish cloud provider using Nimsoft as part of its overall IaaS solution. As an aside, Finland is a great place for datacenters due to its cold climate, educated workforce and its proximity to the Russian market.
Nimsoft also delivered content mostly focused on our business and solution roadmaps. It is our way of keeping our customers informed of our strategy and direction as well as getting the feedback that we need to ensure that we are heading on the right course.
It has been a good few days. Interacting directly with the customer community is the only real way to validate our strategy and direction. In the dreaming spires of Oxford (or Ft. Collins, Colorado), great ideas may be born but their value can only be measured in the white heat of the customer reality.