We’ve all been to conference after conference that stretch the applications of technology but don’t necessarily offer relief to problems that exist in today’s business environment.

This year’s greens fee for presenters and vendors at the Metrolina Entrepreneurial Council’s “FutureTech” conference is that they do provide examples of real-world solutions to current problems facing local small to large companies.

“We wanted to come face-to-face with the business pain decision makers deal with and match them with another individual who has solved that same issue,” says Phil Morris, MEC conference co-chair and founding partner of Mariner, a consulting firm specializing in software applications.

The MEC, a non-profit organization that promotes growth-oriented businesses, will sponsor the its second FutureTech conference on April 30 at the Adams Mark Hotel from 7:45 a.m. to 2:45 p.m.

“We selected vendors that encompassed technologies that could be used in everyday business applications,” says Jim Worrell, one of the event organizers. “The conference is about applying technology that has enormous take-home value, not a series of panel discussions or demos on bleeding-edge technology.”

More than 275 attended last year’s conference, and Morris expects to increase that number this year.

“Few programs feature local technology companies or highlight the current resources that are right here in Charlotte,” Morris adds. “We want to change that while delivering maximum value to the attendees.”

He explains the conference is one of the greatest opportunities to attract a broad and diverse group of both technology gurus who want the “how to”, and the business professionals who need the bottom-line acumen.

Conference agenda

Beth Hardin from University of North Carolina — Charlotte will lead the conference with a discussion on the Institute for Technology Innovation’s efforts to accelerate the growth of intellectual capital with technology. This will be followed with two breakout sessions ranging from market exchanges and infrastructure to streamlining logistics in supply chain management. The afternoon will include two more breakout sessions on eLearning and information access with representatives from TrainOne and Corning Cable Systems, respectively.

Companies that are exhibiting will provide live demonstrations given by the chief executive officer or another senior executive who can talk about the business challenge and the reason behind the technology.

Requesting a senior executive to take an active part in the day was critical, Morris says.

In addition to the break out sessions, more than 40 product companies will take part in the Technology Pavilion. Another 25 or so service providers will also be showcased.

Registration is available on-line at www.mec.org”target=”_blank”> www.mec.org .