Call for papers

Conference Key Dates – 7 & 8 November 2017

  • Presentation draft deadline: 26 September 2017
  • Presentation deadline: 16 October 2017

Call for papers – submission

The preparation process

All of our events are unbiased, research-based and content-driven. The conference content is carefully designed by us with advice from both our internal and external advisory teams to ensure the focus is on what businesses need to know in order to remain competitive.

Conference content is not based on the latest buzzword, specific product releases, the need to sell analyst reports, or a need to supplement an exhibit floor.

Our conferences are designed to foster interaction between all stakeholders. Because we are strictly neutral with regard to vendors, analysts, press, enterprises, and consultants, we have been able to maintain a constant dialogue with each group, all of whom are our customers, all of whom we have learned from, and all of whom we encourage to participate in our events as speakers, attendees and exhibitors.

Attendees come to ITWeb events expecting to get past the vendor hype and industry spin, and learn the untarnished truth, trends and industry comings and goings. Please be encouraged to offer submission ideas that are topical and relevant.

You will be required to send your final presentation to us by 15 August 2017. Please send this to Janine Harding via janine@itweb.co.za.

  • If your presentation is too large to be submitted via e-mail, please use www.wetransfer.com or www.dropbox.com.
  • Should your presentation contain any videos, please send these as a separate file, indicating which presentation slide it belongs to.
  • If at all possible, do not use Presi.

Speaker benefits

Our speakers are active stakeholders in the industry. The biggest benefit in presenting at our conferences is to share experiences and network with your peers, and to interact with the most influential community of ICT-related experts in the industry. Because of the high quality of our speakers, we promote our speakers and their backgrounds on our Web site; often in editorials both pre- and post-event; and sometimes in press releases.

  • Speakers receive a complimentary full conference pass.
  • Speakers may also request a free conference pass for a client or colleague.
  • Speakers presenting a case study get to be featured for an editorial on ITWeb online publications
  • Speakers may offer any further clients/colleagues/peers a 20% discount.

Speaker requirements

As a speaker, we ask that you:
  • Ensure we have an updated bio and hi-res colour head-and-shoulders photo (min 300dpi) within a week of your confirming your participation.
  • Provide a professional quality presentation that is on the agreed upon topic.
  • Use the opening and closing slides provided by our events ops team.
  • Do not include any company branding/advertising in your slide deck or template. You will be asked to remove this prior to review, which only delays the inevitable. You are, however, welcome to include your company logo on the final slide, plus your contact details.
  • If you are part of a panel discussion, allocate at least one conference call for 30 minutes within a month of the event.
  • If you are a chair, you will receive a brief with relevant times and speaker bios prior to the event.
  • Stick to the time allocated for your presentation.
  • Provide your presentation to us in electronic form for review within a month of the event run date; changes will be sent to you within in a week of receipt. Please action these changes and re-submit as soon as possible, and ensure the final slide deck is submitted within 48 hours of the conference start date.

Other speaker-related information and Guidelines

Most presentations will be part of a conference session covering the same topic. Times for presentations can range from 10-45 minutes, but the vast majority are 20-30 minutes followed by five to 10 minutes of Q&A.

If your presentation is supposed to be 20 minutes long, getting through 45 slides is almost impossible. Also remember that slides with lots of builds take more time than a slide with no builds. A good rule of thumb for most people is one slide for every three minutes of presentation. The best thing to do is time yourself in advance!

  • Make sure your slides are readable. In general, nothing below 18pt type is going to be readable by anyone not in the first few rows. A font size of 24pt and up is usually safe.

Some great advice for speakers and moderators

There are two Harvard Business Review posts that provide some of the best advice you can find anywhere on giving a great presentation or moderating an engaging panel. These are must-reads for anyone who cares about presentation or moderating skills, and strongly recommended for ITWeb speakers. Even if you are already a speaking pro, each post is likely to give you at least one new idea.

See:

Case studies and practical real-life examples are key. We understand the need for maintaining confidentiality and a competitive edge, but we encourage an in-depth learning experience and look to reveal trends and industry best practices.

Moderating a session is a highly regarded (yet difficult to execute) role. It is the moderator’s job to ask questions, generate discussion, instigate a controversial argument, involve the audience, and tell a story through the interaction of all participants. The moderator also summarises the discussion, highlights key points of agreement and contention, identifies resources for further study, and ends the session in time to do Q&A with the audience. Before you ask for this role, be sure you have the intestinal fortitude to guide the discussion, panellists and audience. Ability to multitask in front of an audience is a must.

We generally steer away from hefty slide presentations, and instead encourage peer discussion on current topics. All presentations are typically made available for download post-conference.

Speaker substitutions

Speaker substitutions are generally not allowed. Our speakers are chosen for their knowledge and communication capabilities, not because of who they work for. If for some reason you need to cancel, please let us know ASAP, and provide replacement recommendations in case we do not already have a speaker on the waiting list for that particular topic.

Vendor speakers

Although most of our speakers are businesses presenting case studies, analysts providing market insight, or experienced consultants and authors providing “how-to” guidance, we welcome speakers from the vendor community to contribute non-marketing presentations. Vendor speakers often have the most detailed knowledge about new technologies and use-cases and are valuable contributors.

Speaker standards

  1. Knowledge of the subject
    Speakers and moderators should have both in-depth and broad knowledge of the presented subject, going beyond their personal experience or the experience of their organisation or firm. This will help provide examples for participants that illustrate various points of view or methods of doing things, and allow more complete responses to questions. It is also valuable to incorporate a global perspective whenever possible on the topic of discussion.
  2. Presentation skills
    Speakers must understand how to address and teach adults. This includes, at a minimum, good voice projection, co-ordination of oral and visual information, ability to interact positively with the audience, and ability to synthesise information into understandable segments and present them in an orderly and logical manner. One should avoid reading material from the slide presentation.
  3. No commercials
    No speaker will sell or promote any product, service, or publication during any presentation. Distributing or handing out a company’s promotional literature is prohibited outside of the exhibit booth. No more than one slide may be used in the presentation describing the organisation’s capabilities and business operations.

Speaker guidelines

  1. Consider the bottom line
    Registrants attend conferences to gather information that can help them do their own jobs more effectively. Speakers should attempt to relate information, keeping in mind how it can be used by members of the audience and the specific focus of the event.
  2. Use of visuals
    To assure presentations increase understanding by utilising both “show” and “tell”, speakers are strongly encouraged to use both the spoken word and appropriate visuals. Visuals should be professional in appearance.
  3. Audio visual equipment
    The standard AV package includes a lectern, microphone, an LCD projector and screen. Additional AV is available on request, ie, Internet connection, and flip chart and markers (please make the necessary arrangements with our ops team prior to the event).
  4. Moderator’s preparation
    It is strongly suggested that panel moderators contact the participants on their specific panel to discuss the content, focus and timeframe for each presenter, ensuring there is no overlap or redundant information and the transition between speakers is seamless.
  5. No religion, no politics
    Presentations shall be limited to professional topics and shall be free from inappropriate humour, as well as the expression of religious, political, philosophical or other beliefs.
  6. Attire
    It is strongly encouraged that speakers and moderators dress in business attire during presentations.
  7. Permission to record or reproduce
    Presentations will be recorded and your slide deck will be sent out to attendees post-event; should you wish to make any other arrangements, please do so with our ops team prior to the event.

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