Site Reliability Engineering (SRE) and DevOps conferences are a great opportunity for tech professionals to connect with prominent industry experts, discover and test the latest tools in the field, find answers to the challenges they face, and exchange ideas with engineers from around the world.
The SRE/DevOps practice stands on a culture of continuous improvement, collaboration, and communication. Just as DevOps teams work together to increase an organization’s ability to deliver faster, better solutions to its customers, conferences provide the same space of shared learning and help build a better, more reliable future for everyone.
In this article, we share our best tips on how to get the most out of SRE/DevOps conferences and a list of upcoming events we highly recommend.
Essential Tips to Make the Most Out of Your Next SRE/DevOps Conference
Tip 1: Set your goals
Take a moment and think about what you would like to take away from the conference. Are you attending to learn about recent developments in the SRE/DevOps space? Are you interested in expanding your network? Would you like to know more about a specific tool your team wants to use?
Writing down your goals will help you decide which conference best responds to your expectations. For example, if your priority is to meet fellow SRE/DevOps specialists, it is easier to network at smaller events. If your goal is to expand or refresh your knowledge, it is essential to know what topics the conference focuses on, which brings us to our next tip.
Tip 2: Review the program and the speakers
Before you decide to register for a conference, familiarize yourself with the agenda and the speakers. What topics is the conference addressing? Do they respond to a challenge you are currently facing? Are you excited to hear the thoughts of a prominent figure in the tech world? Are there any Q&As or networking sessions in the program? Once you have all that mapped out, highlight the sessions you want to attend so you don’t miss out on anything.
Tip 3: Add the conference to your calendar
Scheduling in the time and preparing for a live event seems obvious, but you might overlook this tiny detail when it comes to online events. Due to health measures, most of this year’s SRE/DevOps conferences are online. Attending a talk from the comfort of your home means you can get more easily distracted. Add the event to your calendar, and even set an “out of office” autoreply to make sure you won’t be disturbed by any work-related emails.
Tip 4: Be present
Most conference organizers provide links to slides and videos from the events. So, rather than frantically taking notes, focus more on listening for those inspiring ideas that emerge on the spot. And you can always jot down a few key takeaways for each goal you set in the beginning.
Tip 5: Network
Probably the most fun aspect of SRE/DevOps conferences, networking allows you to exchange ideas and learn from your peers’ experiences. You may find out that other teams face the same challenges as yours and learn from each other. Some conferences even host games and workshops where DevOps and site reliability engineers can collaborate on specific topics. So don’t be afraid to mingle and have fun.
Tip 6: Follow up
After the conference, reach out to the new people you met via email or social media. Keep the conversation going and find new ways to collaborate.
Now that you know our best tips on how to get the most out of tech conferences, here is our list of recommended SRE/DevOps events in 2021.
SRE/DevOps Conferences in 2021
When: Various dates
Where: Either live or online, depending on location
DevOpsDays is a global event held in different cities throughout the year. Check their events calendar to see the next conference near you. For example, the next DevOpsDays event in the United States will be held on May 4, 2021, in Seattle. On the dedicated event page, you can get in touch with the organizers, follow the event on social media, and learn about the program and the speakers.
When: May 4-7, 2021
This online event is packed with topic-based networking sessions, live chats with speakers, downloadable resources from sponsors, and even job opportunities. The KubeCon + CloudNativeCon is a fun occasion to know the SRE/DevOps community.
When: May 11-13, 2021
Where: Vilnius and online
The annual DevOps Pro Europe conference will be hosted both on-site and online, with a limited number of tickets available for on-site sessions. This event focuses on the pillar concepts of the DevOps methodology. It gives practical advice on using common DevOps practices to develop, deploy, and maintain applications on-premises and in the cloud.
When: May 20, 2021
Site Reliability Engineering (SRE) SKILupDay is an event hosted by DevOps Institute and reunites industry experts to discuss new ways to create scalable and highly reliable software systems.
When: October 12-14, 2021
Where: Details will be provided
SREcon21 brings together engineers that care deeply about Site Reliability, systems engineering, and working with complex distributed systems at scale. The virtual event will be held on October 12-14, 2021, for the SREcon community.