Having elaborated a small SIT history in the first blog part, we will get in the second part some insights from well-known SIT organizers (AJ, Christian, Daniel and Kati), check out how satisfied SIT participants are and what are their actual wishes.
Can we observe specific topic trends?
AJ: “Yes, SITs are meant to be casual community sharing sessions. However, speakers should begin with the attendees in mind – what’s relevant to them.”
Christian: “Speakers are giving you a personal insight to their area of expertise. An SIT therefore is covering trending topics but often will pull you out of your comfort zone and widen your horizon.”
Daniel: “SITs cater the demands of the broader SAP expert community and have a good coverage of the topics around ABAP, CRM, newer UI & cloud techniques such as UI5, Fiori or HCP. Also SITs follow recent trends, such as IoT, which especially due to the easy options for DIY showcases makes it very engaging topic, which gathers interest from lots of attendees.“
Keep the attendance of the event free of charge and how to calculate the correct numbers of attendees in advance, was one of the challenges I already mentioned in context with the SIT Sheffield 2014. Following additional challenges are mentioned by the SIT organizers:
AJ: “One further challenge I’ve seen is marketing – getting the speakers and attendees who’d be interested/free to join.”
Christian: “Love to see new locations to come up. A great chance to materialize the “community spirit” at one time in one place next to you. Where are the white spots in the world? Start small –and give it a try!”
Daniel: “Marketing & community participation. We want to open SITs to the broader communities around SAP topics, and you actually need to be able to reach out e.g. to established user groups etc.”
Kati: ”We are all busy, and you as an attendee need a lot of passion to spend your weekend. This sets some pressure on the SIT organizers, who need to deliver a great event.”
How to optimize a SIT and how satisfied are the SIT participants?
“Pre and post event surveys help in gauging audience’s interests and preference.” (AJ). So, several questionnaires and surveys were realized 2011 after SIT Milan, Italy, 2014 with Survey Monkey after SIT Hyderabad, India, and 2016 with Google Forms at SIT Manchester, UK. From the different forms I picked up some interesting quotes and results showing up preferences and trends. Concerning the SIT Milan 2011 attendees the majority of people are not interested to attend a second SIT taking place in another country but are willing to attend the national SIT in the next year and even to take part in the organization of it. Concerning the presentation timing, the preferred session length is 30 minutes to 1 hour and innovative topics were appreciated. The conclusion from Sergio Ferrari was: “Fill the first three hours and half of the agenda with short sessions and reserve the afternoon for the Round Table to go deeper and beef-up the networking.” Concerning the SIT Hyderabad 2014, 50 Percent of people were highly satisfied with the event, also in relation with the quality of the presentations including the discussion time. Information usefulness and organization level were voted around 40-45 Percent. And for the SIT Manchester 2016 nearly 50 percent preferred live demos and around 43 percent also more technical content. 65 percent are even interested in taking over a presentation. Social events are highly appreciated. Besides of this a question referring to registered people who didn’t attend shows as main reason last minute work commitments. So, we can say a SIT is popular national event where people are interested to engage and:
“SIT is a great way to make contacts, form friendships and a great place to learn about new SAP products.”
What are the actual wishes of SIT attendees?
- There should be a possibility for live streaming the event.
- There should be more support for the participation of women.
- There should be no multiple tracks at the same time that make the choice difficult.
- There should be a slot for outsider presentations.
- Short sessions about new product ranges and developments are appreciated; preference of functional topics and real time presentations.
- Interest in hearing from the mentor’s experience.
- Networking with likeminded people and sharing knowledge.
Preferred topics were asked in the questionnaire from SIT UK 2016 but not related to figures. And just to add my two cents: to get a better comparison a generalized survey form to evaluate future SITS would be useful.
What are the conclusions and insights?
Relevant feedback from the attendees are reflected in the listed quotations. Let’s see what SIT organizers will answer:
Christian: ”Bringing a group of experts together to participate and speak on a Saturday will ensure that you are having an incredible passionate team. Compared to SAPTechEd e. g., the SIT can be different: more individual, more adventurous, more interactive.”
Daniel: “SAPInsideTracks are the grass-root initiative to connect within the broader SAP Community. Leaving behind all the marketing speak, it is even good for me as a SAP employee to get direct feedback on what and how we do things. SITs are a fantastic learning opportunity for everybody in the SAP ecosystem. SITs can even grow more and invest in diversity activities to include more people from broader SAP community.”
Kati: “We do need to have more inclusion, e. g. enlarge the participation of women by networking and creating contacts for them.”
“SIT is Community, family, nothing more to add.”
So, stay tuned: In the next blog part we will take interviews with you, the SIT attendees, … and above all we are curious about your feedback.
Let’s complete this blog part with some “SIT art” from Christian with the title “SAP Inside Tracks – Unique by nature”:
Disclaimer: This blog series content is based on my view/perspective and has only the intention of giving something back to our SCN community. I can’t mention all SITs or people engaged in it.
SIT History:2009 SITs UK London; NL Eindhoven, US Palo Alto, Canada Montreal, Brazil Sao Paulo
- 2010 SITs Germany Bonn, Belgium Brussels, NL Eindhoven, UK London, Turkey Istanbul, US Palo Alto, NS and St. Louis, Canada Vancouver, Brazil Sao Paulo, Israel Ra’anana, India Bangalore, Australia Sydney
- 2011 SITs NL Eindhoven, Italy Milan, Turkey Ankara, US Chicago, NS, St. Louis and Washington, Canada Calgary and Vancouver, Brazil Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo and Sao Leopoldo, India Bangalore and Kolkata, Australia Sydney
- 2012 SITs Germany Hamburg, Belgium Brussels, NL Eindhoven, Italy Milan, Turkey Ankara, US Chicago, Palo Alto, NS, New York and Washington, Canada Calgary, Toronto and Vancouver, Brazil Sao Paulo, India Bangalore, Hyderabad and Kolkata, Singapore, Australia Sydney
- 2013 SITs Germany Hamburg and Munich, Italy Milan, UK Manchester, Czech Republic Prague, Turkey Istanbul, Israel Ra’anana, US Chicago, NS, New York, St. Louis and Washington, Canada Toronto and VancouverBrazil Sao Paulo, India Bangalore and Deli, Singapore, Australia Melbourne