Azure Bootcamp

Est. reading time: 2 minutes
Author: Richard Jackson

SQLBits is the largest community-led SQL Server and Microsoft Data Platform conference in Europe.

Richard Jackson

Cloud Software Engineer


This year’s data conference took place at the International Convention Centre (ICC) Wales, so Chris and I were delighted to be able to make a short trip down the M4 to attend. While we had the pleasure of a half hour drive, other attendees had flown over from across the world, from Albuquerque to India. This was clearly the place to be for anyone working in a data-driven enterprise.

Events such as SQLBits are invaluable opportunities to learn from tech specialists at the top of their game, and this year’s conference was no exception. We attended two, full-day training sessions which were filled with business-relevant technical solutions and perspectives relevant for our day-to-day operations – notebooks were filled with ideas to take back to our clients.

Sessions attended included:

  • “Automate the rollout of a complete Azure based data warehouse solution in a day” with Andre Kamman
  • “Boost Your Skills for an Azure Architect” with Heini Ilmarinen
  • “Building an end-to-end and open solution to monitor and govern your entire data estate” with Dave Ruijter and friends
  • “Improve your skills as a database developer” with Uwe Ricken


Alongside these core sessions were the opportunities for after-hours gaming, socialising, excellent foot and even a 5k run (!) in a “Dungeons and Dragons”-themed environment – what more could you ask for?

I then returned for the Saturday sessions to catch the most colourfully dressed keynote speech ever witnessed, before attending a session by Microsoft Sr CSA Manager and NHQ Chair Steph Locke on the use of Azure Functions within data pipelines.

This event was hugely beneficial for us as a company as the learning taken from these sessions will have immediate advantages for our clients and future projects. It was a joy to see such an important event be hosted in Wales and we hope that more, large conferences make their way across the border.

SQLBits 2023