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VMblog's Expert Interviews: An Exclusive Inside Look at Commvault GO 2018 with Bill Wohl


Commvault GO 2018 is fast approaching, kicking off from October 9-11, 2018 in Nashville, Tennessee.  This will be Commvault's third year hosting the event, and we are expecting bigger and better things based on the growth and details taking place over the last two events.  To find out more, I spoke with Bill Wohl, the company's Vice President and Chief Communications Officer, ahead of the show to get the details and better understand what Commvault has planned for attendees and sponsoring vendors.

VMblog:  Can you start off by providing some details about the upcoming Commvault GO event?  What are the ‘who, what and where' so people know what's coming and when?  What's the theme of this year's show?

Bill Wohl:  Commvault GO 2018 is taking place October 9 to 11 in Nashville, Tennessee. As the only industry event dedicated to backup and recovery for the progressive enterprise, the conference will bring together a vast audience of data experts, customers, partners and influencers for over 150 labs, mini-theaters, and both industry-specific and customer speaking sessions.  

Building on the success of its back-to-back, sold-out conferences in 2016 and 2017, the theme of this year's Commvault GO is "Picture the Possibilities." Speakers and attendees will explore why they should be demanding more of their data protection software, and begin expecting it to work for them as they use data to achieve remarkable results in today's digital economy.

Commvault GO 2018 attendees will leave the conference with actionable intelligence on how they can simplify, streamline and scale backup and recovery processes across diverse environments, enhance their use of multiple clouds for storage, application deployment and disaster recovery, recover quickly from ransomware or malware attacks, and identify and preserve data to meet GDPR and other regulations.

VMblog:  Why should people register for and attend Commvault GO this year?

Wohl:  For me, the biggest reason to come to Commvault GO 2018 is our lineup of speakers. Our keynote speakers, Bill Nye "The Science Guy" and acclaimed actor, poet, comic, and motivator Steve Connell will offer their unique perspectives on the role data plays in science and IT to help attendees picture new possibilities. Emcee Jillian Coffin of TechTarget, Commvault's CEO Bob Hammer and COO Al Bunte as well as other speakers will expand on this discussion, looking at how enterprises can protect and use data to drive simplification, risk reduction and greater data management efficiencies.

We will also have data experts from globally-recognized brands such as TiVo, Maersk, AudienceView, American Pacific Mortgage and Alectra Utilities describing how they are protecting and using data to achieve remarkable results.

In addition, this year's Commvault GO will feature GO ‘X', a unique main stage format consisting of eight, seven-minute speaker slots in a lighting-round approach. GO ‘X' will bring together third-party industry experts, analysts and partners to address some of today's most challenging data-centric business and technology issues, including how to bring AI to the cloud, how to find more value in data protection investments, and when enterprises should consider "as-a-service" data protection.

Executives from Commvault and its partners, including Microsoft, Cisco, HPE and AWS, will examine how attendees can use the latest backup and recovery innovations to improve data protection and availability, simplify data management across the enterprise, comply with new privacy and personal data regulation requirements like GDPR and become more agile in delivering services to their business.

All this will happen in a deeply engaging and entertaining environment that inspires new actionable ideas, fosters professional relationships and sparks new business opportunities.

Another reason to go? Location, location, location! We are thrilled to be hosting our conference at the Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center in Nashville, Tennessee. Known as "Music City," Nashville offers attendees a night life like no other city in the world -- and GO's closing night party will take place in the heart of Nashville's music scene, at the city's newest, in-demand clubs: Jason Aldean's Kitchen & Rooftop Bar, and the interconnected club by Luke Bryan known as Luke's 32 Bridge Food + Drink. From walking down Broadway and checking out one of the many local honky-tonks to take in live music, or visiting one of the city's many museums and historic stages, there is no shortage of things to do in Nashville.

With a more interactive and diverse agenda than ever before, Commvault GO 2018 is a "must attend event" for business and IT leaders trying to solve the biggest and most pressing data questions faced by enterprises today.

VMblog:  Talk about your partner ecosystem.  And how many sponsors will be at the event this year? Can you talk about the key benefits as to why those exhibitors have chosen to sponsor Commvault GO?

Wohl:  Commvault's broad partner ecosystem will be well represented at Commvault GO 2018, with many of our technology alliance, channel and service partners speaking, exhibiting and attending. Specifically, they will be discussing how recent enhancements to our partner program are helping them simplify, streamline and scale their businesses. These enhancements have improved all aspects of our partner engagement, ensuring that we are an easy company to work with, with simple product navigation, consistent support, and enhanced tools.

We've seen the success of these initiatives through our partner's strong interest in supporting this year's Commvault GO. We have more than 35 sponsors for the event, including 25 returning sponsors and more than 10 new sponsors. These sponsors will be opening booths, hosting sessions, and fielding questions at this year's conference, helping attendees learn more about how they are working with Commvault to help enterprises use data to achieve remarkable results.

VMblog:  Are there any new trends in the industry that people should be aware of or should keep their eyes and ears on the lookout for anytime during the show?

Wohl:  I think the key industry trend that will be explored at Commvault GO 2018 is how, in today's digital economy, business and IT leaders are questioning legacy approaches to backup and recovery, and expecting more - a lot more -- when it comes to data protection software.

These leaders are coming to Commvault GO to learn ways and best practices on how they can make their data best work for them while increasing simplicity, cost savings, and efficiency, all while reducing risk.  In addition to maximizing the value of this data, IT leaders need faster data recovery times to keep their operations running smoothly. They are having to comply with increasingly strict data privacy regulations like GDPR and CCPA and they have to protect their data from a growing number of sophisticated ransomware and other cyberattacks. All of this must happen while also reducing costs, finding and retaining scarce IT talent, and implementing strategic digital transformation projects that activate their data so they can stay one step ahead of the competition.

Customers and organizations in general should expect nothing less than a complete backup and recovery solution that is end-to-end. IT leaders need to raise their expectations when it comes to the software they use to protect their data. It is no longer enough for this software to help them work - it needs to work for them. It should work for them by leveraging AI and machine learning to enable self-driving backup and recovery that automates everyday tasks like load balancing and alerts them to anomalies that indicate they have a data recovery issue. It should work for them by providing automatic infrastructure provisioning, instance optimizing and tuning with other capabilities that make their clouds smarter, enabling these clouds to serve as a true extension of their datacenter. It should work for them by delivering them a comprehensive understanding of all their data, both what it is and where it is, so they can cut costs by optimizing the storage of this data and reduce risk by automating policies to properly govern their sensitive data.

In the end, it is about business and IT leaders who are no longer satisfied with the status quo, and demanding software that does data management differently. Amazon has changed the way we shop, Netflix has transformed the way we watch TV and Airbnb has changed the way we travel. These leaders think enterprises need to follow these companies' example, and start leveraging AI, cloud and other innovative technologies to fundamentally change the way we backup, recover, manage and activate data as well.


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Published Monday, October 01, 2018 9:09 AM by David Marshall
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