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Australia and New Zealand partners win record haul in Global Inspire Partner Awards

Attributed to Rachel Bondi, Chief Partner Officer, Partner Solutions Group, Microsoft Australia 

I can’t tell you how delighted I am to share the exciting news about our Australian and New Zealand partners who have performed brilliantly in Microsoft’s Inspire Global Partner Awards.

It’s been a record haul, with local partners winning three of the international categories. We also had 11 companies named finalists in 12 categories. The competition for these awards is both intense and international – more than 4,400 submissions from 100 countries – and it’s testament to the commitment of our local partners, and the dedication of their people, that this region performed so well.

I’m particularly thrilled about the ANZ success in Business Applications and Modern Workplace – this is one area where our technology combined with partner smarts and commitment can make such a huge impact for our clients. Over the last year as more and more organisations have had to find new, smart and safe ways to work, to meet shifting customer expectations, and also to lay the digital foundations for future innovation, it’s been deeply impressive to see the impact our partners are having across Australia and New Zealand.

We have also announced our partners of the year and growth partners for both Australia and New Zealand. Well done everyone!

First to the country winners:

  • Engage Squared was named the Australian partner of the year. Engage Squared is a clear leader in delivering exceptional digital employee experiences in many of Australia’s leading corporations and Government agencies. The work it undertook at Bupa serves as a beacon for other organisations – revealing how technology could transform the way they operate and lay the foundations for ongoing innovation. With Gold Competencies in six categories Engage Squared invests in, and deeply values, its people which was reflected in its being named as one of the top 10 Australian tech companies in the AFR’s Best Places to Work list. It is also an Inspire global finalist in the Modern Workplace for Frontline Workers category – outstanding.
  • Fusion5 was NZ partner of the year. Fusion5 is a small but mighty New Zealand partner punching above its weight by blending Microsoft technologies – Power Platform and Dynamics 365 – to transform the education sector. Right now, Fusion5 has transformations underway with 90 per cent of NZ’s universities, creating frameworks that ensure ROI and ultimately improve enrolment numbers and student outcomes. Again and again Fusion5 develops solutions that allow organisations to get past their own operations, in order to properly focus on their own customers’ needs.

In addition, our global category winners were:

  • Insight Enterprises which was named the winner of the Solution Assessments award in the Business Excellence Category. Insight has worked closely with Microsoft’s global Solution Assessment team. It has pioneered and co-created the Data Estate Assessment in Australia to evaluate, evolve and offer continued support of data ecosystems at every stage of maturity, from small, bespoke data modernisation activities to large-scale Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Internet of Things solutioning. Insight’s capabilities are demonstrated for clients such as UNSW, Catholic Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle, and City of Whittlesea. They also played a critical role in TAFE NSW’s transformation, designing and implementing a reporting and insights platform as the backbone of the business, from regulatory and ministerial reporting to new insights to improve education services, with the program expected to exceed $10M of benefits back to the organisation.
  • Thales Group secured the global Defence and Intelligence Award. Thales’ Azure-based Nexium Defence Cloud Edge delivers mission-decisiveness, agility, effectiveness, interoperability, and security. Thales Australia developed a secure tactical cloud computing capability for the Australian Defence Force, designed to be used at the edge of a battlespace. Built on the Azure Stack and designed to be compatible with Five Eyes nations, NATO Federated Mission network, as well as humanitarian aid and civilian applications the modular, sovereign solution enables forces to operate autonomously in the theatre of operations, for land, sea, air, cyber or space missions.
  • Mobile Mentor was named winner of the Modern Endpoint Management category. When the US Coast Guard, Mayo Clinic, Vanderbilt Health and the New Zealand Defence Force needed an Intune partner – they came to Mobile Mentor. Meanwhile in its engagement with Alive Hospice Mobile Mentor helped implement Zero-Touch Provisioning – the ability to configure a new laptop, tablet or smartphone, without anyone from IT having to touch the device before the user opens the box, delivering benefits for the Hospice and the patients in its care.

Our 2021 Australian Growth award, a local award that we launched last year and introduced in New Zealand this year, went to:

  • Velrada, which took centre stage when its Australian developed Power Roster platform, built using Dynamics 365 and Power Platform was selected to run the resourcing and logistics for the recent meeting of the G7 in the UK. This was just one of many customers it supported over the past 12 months including Australia’s largest ASX-listed company, BHP, where it worked on a HoloLens2 and Dynamics 365 Remote Assist solution that allowed experts to connect to mine workers despite the travel restrictions of the pandemic. It also worked with one of the largest educational institutions – Catholic Education Western Australia and, one of the country’s biggest law firms – Maurice Blackburn.
  • Auror, our inaugural NZ Growth Partner of the Year, is a small New Zealand organisation doing phenomenally well on the world stage working with huge global retailers to help protect companies from the $100B worth of crime related losses every year. The speed of their success is testament to the power of their solution. From their first four stores, Auror has now grown to serve more than 10,000 stores in less than a decade.

Congratulations to all the winners for your absolutely outstanding efforts.

I also want to highlight the very important work of the partners named as finalists in their categories.

Our Partner of the Year awards are designed to showcase the importance of the work our partners and their teams undertake and the impact that they have brought to bear. There is impressive momentum across the entire partner community in Australia and New Zealand and I am confident that we can build on this success and continue to grow by delighting clients in the coming 12 months.