November 12, 2015

Top 3 Takeaways from Baltimore Ravens Mobility Summit

With the mobile era in full swing, organizations are experiencing a once in a generation transformation in IT that is changing how we do business. Connect your fans and users through social and mobile, and differentiate your company with the right technology. That’s the advice the most innovative IT leaders exchange when they get together to share their experience and strategies.

Last week I had the pleasure of attending Extreme’s Executive Mobility Summit hosted at the home of the Baltimore Ravens, M&T Bank Stadium. Every year Extreme Networks hosts 4-5 Executive Mobility Summits throughout the country at some of the most elite professional stadiums in the United States including Seattle Seahawks, New England Patriots, GreenBay Packers and more. These events bring together industry thought leaders, fellow IT professionals, and customers of all industries, to share insight, inspire solutions, and learn about the growing role of the network in the mobile era.

Here are the Top 3 Takeaways from Ravens Mobility Summit:

1. The Baltimore Ravens understand the importance of providing the very best in-stadium fan experience and that includes robust Wi-Fi connectivity…

During the two stadium tours that kicked off the summit event, it was obvious that the Baltimore Ravens understand the importance of the digital shift in the enterprise, and how businesses must prepare. 

To appreciate the scope of what it takes to provide a connected fan experience in such a high-density environment Roy Sommerhof, Sr. Vice President of Stadium Operations at Raven’s M&T bank Stadium shared a snapshot of the network technology at M&T Bank Stadium:

MTBank Stadium Tech Snapshot

M&T Bank Stadium was built in 1998 in the heart of Baltimore serving as the home to the Baltimore Ravens as well as host to many other events. Walking through the stadium I was wow-ed by the pure size and scope of the stadium. It is 1.6 million square feet with a seating capacity in excess of 71,000! Of the 71,000+ seats there are over 8,000 club suites and 128 other suites scattered throughout.

Since its inception, M&T Bank Stadium has evolved with the mobile user, placing connectivity as a core element of their business strategy, and as we soon found out (takeaway #2), positioning themselves well for IDC’s Third Platform era.

2. The Third Platform is driving business transformation and the time to act was yesterday.

So, how do businesses stay afloat? They do so through innovation and collaboration. Organizations need to take advantage of all four trends in the 3rd platform (social, mobile, cloud, and big data) and start thinking of new ways to engage with customers, drive new revenue, and monetize the connected experience.

… These were the messages from Crawford Del Prete, who presented Digital Transformation 2020: How Technology is Reshaping Customer Experiences sharing eye-opening insight supported by IDC research. IDC's Third PlatformCrawford is the Executive Vice President of the Worldwide Research Products and Chief Research Officer at IDC, a leading authority in the IT industry, and has completed extensive research on the structure and evolution of the information technology industry. During the keynote speaking session, Crawford paints a picture of our IT future, discussing the importance of IT’s Third Platform, and how it is impacting organizations in the near and long-term future. Del Prete describes the Third Platform as the era of interaction that is fueled by connections – think Internet of Things, growing connections between everything, everywhere.

According to IDC research, technology is changing organization’s business models in the following ways:

  • How they engage with customers
  • The speed at which they deliver their products and services
  • How they innovate
  • Their resiliency
  • The reliability of their operations

What IDC research has found is that IT leaders have not evolved their staffing policies to begin building a workforce to implement these new requirements. Only 60% of organizations have begun to include the digital transformation at the center of their corporate strategy leaving the remaining 40% in a vulnerable position to fail. The reality is; the digital shift of the Third Platform is accelerated and multi-faceted and can no longer be ignored.

3. “Technology is a thing you have to have, and a thing you have to differentiate”– Alissa Johnson, PhD, Chief Information Security Officer for Stryker

Providing superior mobility access is a given in todays digital era, but how you measure and take advantage of this connectivity is what sets you apart. Revealed in the previous keynote session, IDC research predicts that in 2020:

  • The amount of high value data – that is worth analyzing – will double.
  • 60% of information delivered to decision makers is “always actionable.”
  • Organizations able to analyze and act on relevant data generate over $400 billion in productivity benefits over their analytically challenged peers.

The research and evidence is there, harnessing the power of big data is essential to business sustainability today and tomorrow. Organizations that invest in the adoption of data analytics platforms put themselves at an advantage in the market over their peers by sheer productivity driven by not only available but also actionable information for decision makers.

Providing a positive experience in the mobile era relies on the ability to take advantage of the data generated from mobility to differentiate, and enhance the connected experience.

Now that you’ve read all the benefits; here is a staggering statistic on organization’s use of big data today – only less than 0.5% of all data is ever analyzed and used. Is your organization ready to reap the benefits of big data?


Don’t Fear the Digital Transformation

The Mobility Summit closed with a panel discussion of IT leaders in a variety of industries discussing ‘Game Day’ in the Digital Era. Whatever your ‘Game Day’ may be whether it is a Ravens season opener game at M&T Bank Stadium or a k-12 classroom, hospital operation room, higher education campus, manufacturing line, or corporate office – the experience you deliver matters every time.

For those of us in high-technology community, there are always new trends impacting and evolving the network but the truth is, IT has taken on a whole new, and larger role, in an organization’s success and right now, the focus must be on leveraging the network to not only participate but also thrive in the mobile era.

Of course, you can sit back and wait for your hand to be forced by the devices, and connectivity relying on your network or you can start thinking digitally. If you haven’t already, it’s time to prepare your network to provide the connected experience that the Third Platform is driving and the Baltimore Ravens are working towards, and reap the benefits of our connected world with big data intelligence.


Interested in attending or learning more about future Executive Mobility Summits? Extreme Networks will be hosting the next Executive Mobility Summit at CenturyLink Field, home stadium of the Seattle Seahawks in January 2016! Please reach out to Brittany Silveria at to register and learn more.


About The Contributor:
SarahJane WalsheDigital Marketing Specialist

SarahJane Walshe is the digital marketing specialist at Extreme Networks. In this role, SarahJane is responsible for developing and managing the corporate lead generation program where she specializes in the strategy and execution of content marketing and lead nurture campaigns for successful inbound marketing and lead generation initiatives. She has been with Extreme Networks since February 2014, transitioning from her previous role as the Vertical Solutions Marketing co-op during her graduate studies at the University of New Hampshire earning her MBA from the Peter T. Paul College of Business and Economics. SarahJane also earned her Bachelor of Arts degree from UNH with a focus in digital marketing and media studies.

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