So, yet another SQLBits finished, and judging by the feedback we got it was the best yet. Certainly we had our highest ever attendance and the sponsors all seemed very happy (which is important because, after all, they’re the ones paying for it); we’ve also had a number of very kind emails thanking us too. Now for a few months of peace and quiet before we start planning for the next one, which I suppose will be sometime in the autumn. Any suggestions on where to hold it? Bristol, Oxford, Leeds?
Incidentally, if you took any photos or videos at SQLBits why not share them on the SQLBits Facebook group? There’s also a SQLBits LinkedIn group and the #sqlbits tag on Twitter that you might want to check out too. Oh, and while you’re at it why not join the UK SQL Server User Group Facebook group as well? We’re planning some BI user group events soon, I promise.
I suspect the current economic problems have had a lot to with the success of SQLBits. Apart from the fact that a free conference is the perfect answer to a reduced training budget, I guess everyone’s worried about job security and therefore keen to invest in their own education – Simon Munro wrote a good blog entry on exactly this topic last week which is worth a read. However, I found it interesting talking to other BI professionals at the conference (and yes, networking is another great reason to come along) about their pipelines because everyone was saying how busy they were at the moment. When the recession hit I was sceptical of predictions that the BI sector would survive unscathed but, although I’ll admit I’ve not been as busy this year as I was last, I’m still doing more than OK. Looking at the visitor stats for this blog and my company website, I’ve noticed hits from a number of companies that have been in the news for their, ahem, financial problems – and the conclusion I draw is that there are a lot of organisations out their who have realised how little they know about their own financial situation and hope BI software is the answer.