2019 OpenSesame User Conference Highlights

Highlights from 2019 OpenSesame User Conference

OpenSesame hosted more than 200 customers, course publishers and LMS companies at its annual user conference 11-12 September in Portland, Oregon. 

This year’s conference centered on themes surrounding future skilling and developing leaders for a 21st century workforce, leveraging learning technology advancements in machine learning and artificial intelligence, maximizing elearning utilization, finding training budgets and saving time managing and administering training programs. Customers spent two days networking with peers, meeting the OpenSesame team, sharing insights during roundtables and other sessions, learning from other OpenSesame customers, meeting new publishers at the Publisher Expo and more. 

Keynote speaker Donald H Taylor kicks off conference 

This year’s conference featured a keynote by Donald Taylor, Chairman of the Learning and Performance Institute, on the past, current and future state of learning technologies and our industry. Donald shared the results of his annual Learning & Development (L&D) Global Sentiment Survey which asks L&D professionals across the globe: “What do you think will be hot in L&D next year?” For a full recap of the results of the 2019 survey, check this blog post. 

Donald Taylor keynote at the OpenSesame User Conference

Customer sessions and panel connect attendees

Four OpenSesame customers presented this year, sharing the intricate workings of their training program challenges, budget, how OpenSesame helps them and future goals. Speakers this year included EnerSys Inc., InComm, Carrington Mortgage, and Toshiba America Business Solutions

OpenSesame customer, EnerSys, presents at the annual OpenSesame User Conference

A customer panel, hosted by Donald Taylor, was a highlight for attendees this year! Attendees heard from L&D peers from WCA Waste Corporation, Pacific Seafood, and EnerSys. The discussion was interactive, thoughtful and covered topics such as leadership development, growing training programs, how to find elearning, their favorite professional development books, and more. 

Customer Panel featuring Pacific Seafood, WCA and Enersys

Publisher expo

OpenSesame curates courses from our comprehensive library of 20,000+ courses from the world’s top course publishers. Eighteen of OpenSesame’s publishers joined us at the user conference in our first ever Publisher Expo. During the Expo,  customers met with publishers to learn and demo new courses offered through OpenSesame. In addition, two course publishers were featured speakers this year, Shawn Hunter from Mindscaling and Jeff Havens from The Jeff Havens Company

Publisher expo at the OpenSesame User Conference

Networking at the OpenSesame office followed by world-class women’s soccer

After a busy first day of sessions and meetings, conference attendees visited the OpenSesame’s office in the heart of downtown Portland. After light snacks and office tours (as well as a greeting by an office dog!) attendees headed to Portland’s Providence Park to watch the Portland Thorns take on the North Carolina Courage, two defending NWLS champions! It was a beautiful night for soccer and networking with speakers, peers, the OpenSesame team and more.

Thorns game

Honoring the first ever OpenSesame Learning Excellence Award winners

The Learning Excellence Awards program recognizes OpenSesame customers that leverage learning technology, creativity, innovation and blended learning in developing successful training programs. OpenSesame CEO Don Spear and SVP Marketing Diane Haines hosted the award ceremony, which highlighted unique training programs and showcased the relationship OpenSesame customers have with their OpenSesame customer success team. It was a celebratory event to remember!

Winners this year included:

Incomm winning most creative launch of a training program award

Closing remarks and farewell until next year

After a busy two days it came time to say goodbye. After closing with the 2019 OpenSesame Learning Excellence Awards, OpenSesame CEO Don Spear closed the event by thanking attendees, our publishers and partners for joining. we hope you join us in Portland next year for the 2020 OpenSesame User Conference!