The excitement is growing as we get closer to our UiPath FORWARD IV conference in Las Vegas this October. And it’s not just we UiPathers who are excited. Our customers and our partners are increasingly reporting that this will be their first conference since early 2020, when pandemic lockdowns began. They’re looking forward to meeting in person with their peers and all the other expert practitioners of automation. We can’t wait to welcome them.
Yes, we’re well aware that the pandemic isn’t over. But many of the customers and partners we’ve talked to can’t wait to join in the largest and most immersive gathering of automation experts in the world. They’re already making plans to be at the Bellagio, October 5 and 6, 2021. And we’ve been making plans to ensure that our guests will have confidence that they will be safe and comfortable.
The most significant move we’re making is we are requiring all attendees of FORWARD IV to be fully vaccinated. This is to safeguard—to the greatest possible extent—that our guests are protected and can confidently enjoy the event experience, safely returning home to their families, friends, and colleagues.
We’ve been working on FORWARD IV all year. We have created a unique event design with the comfort and safety of our guests in mind. In fact, our event design is the first of its kind for the Bellagio. The staff there loves our innovative design, and they’ve been working with us enthusiastically to bring our vision to life. We’ve named the FORWARD IV event concept “inside-out.”
FORWARD IV "inside-out"
We developed FORWARD with several guiding principles in mind. The first, and most important principle is this: every attendee is a VIP. Every event activity is open and available to each attendee. Second, we want our guests to leave our event knowing that it has enriched them on both a professional and on a personal level. And third, we’ll strive to prioritize our guests’ comfort and give them confidence that they’ll be safe, so they can take full advantage of the on-site FORWARD IV experience.
Let’s explore some of the steps we’ve taken to protect our guests’ well-being with the inside-out concept.
A transformed Expertsville
The biggest change is that we’ve moved our Expertsville outside to the Bellagio pool deck. Why? We know that it’s safer to engage in animated conversations outdoors. Expertsville is always a buzzing, bustling area where attendees can meet face-to-face with our partner sponsors and UiPath experts. It’s where they can view product demos, get answers to questions, pose challenges, and share ideas. We want to preserve the unique spirit of give-and-take, but with all the necessary precautions.
We’ve also extended Expertsville’s hours of operation. We know the exchange of automation ideas and networking Expertsville offers is an equal draw to keynote stages, and now the schedule reflects that. It will be closed only during mainstage keynote sessions – about 3.5 hours each day. It will be open during breakout sessions and during breakfast and lunch.
We’ll party by the pool
Our evening Welcome Reception will be outside, too. We’re referring to it as the “Dockside” party. You’ll learn what that means when you arrive! And our Tuesday evening Automation Celebration will be outside on the pool deck as well, which will be transformed into a nighttime celebration of human achievement, both on land and in the water.
An upgraded theater experience
The inside-out concept also includes the event keynotes and breakouts. Attendees can watch live streams of keynote sessions from their hotel rooms, or wherever they feel most comfortable. We’ll also be streaming the mainstage keynotes to Expertsville, on one of several monitors around the pool deck.
Although it’s not outside, the Keynote Theater has been redesigned with social distancing in mind. The seating in Bellagio’s largest theater will be at half-capacity. Each seat will provide the experience of a first-class airline seat—with expanded legroom and extra space on each side. Each seat will include a table large enough to hold a laptop, notebook, and coffee cup. Instead of sitting elbow-to-elbow with fellow attendees, you’ll be able to stretch your legs and enjoy the show.
Going with the flow
Out on the pool deck in Expertsville, we’re planning things never done before at the Bellagio. In fact, it’s the first time the Bellagio will host a convention outside on the pool deck. We’ve made design changes to the pool area to improve the experience. For example, to improve the flow of attendees through the event area, we’re building an additional staircase from the conference area out to the pool deck and Expertsville. This is a first for the Bellagio. It will provide an additional access point for attendees to move between the indoor and outdoor conference areas and will help alleviate congestion. We’ve also designed a large bridge across the main swimming pool with the same goal in mind, to eliminate congestion in high-traffic areas.
We’ve put a lot of thought and creativity into moving Expertsville outside. For example, we even studied the movement of the sun across the location over time, so we know when and where the sun will be most intense. This has guided our design of the show floor to optimize booth and monitor position, as well as where to strategically place parasols and tents to shade equipment and people. In fact, we even designed special filters for the inside of the parasols and tents to provide more shade and better visibility of the monitors and screens that the experts will use.
A better event is in the bag
Each guest will receive an insulated welcome bag on arrival. It will include goodies like sunscreen and a mask to make the experience more comfortable. More surprises are in store! But we don’t want to spoil them. Just know that we’re doing our best to anticipate your needs.
We hope you’ll join us at the Bellagio in Las Vegas, October 5 and 6, 2021, for FORWARD IV. You can register at www.uipath.com/events/forward. See you there!
This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://www.uipath.com/blog/automation/going-inside-out-forward-2021