Is one week enough to cover everything about Cloud? Club Cloud Conference

Club Cloud is a wrap! During the first edition of this cloud and data conference, IT professionals and business executives around the globe immersed themselves in topics such as strategy, web-based workplace, infrastructure as code, software engineering, DevOps, security, and data applications. Over 130 speakers from pioneering organizations discussed the many ways in which cloud technology provides industry leaders and disruptors a competitive edge when it comes to time to market, agility, and growth. The hybrid event was recorded and streamed from studios with a live audience, reaching thousands of professionals in Europe, Australia, and the US.

With Club Cloud, Xebia aimed to cover everything cloud-related in one week. Check out the highlights and decide for yourself if it’s even possible to realize such a wild ambition.

During the first week of November, companies like Danone, Heineken, DSM, Interfood, Ahold,, Picnic, and Schiphol Group took to Club Cloud’s stage. They shared how they are leveraging the benefits of a cloud-native way of working, accelerating their business with data applications, and changing how they are organized. Leading and emerging tech providers were also present. From AWS, GCP, Microsoft, and Databricks to NATS, Coiled, SODA, Fivetran, and dbt.

Ahold data scientists discuss data-driven applications during Club Cloud

Instead of wondering what Club Cloud was all about, ask what we didn’t discuss! The extensive program that sometimes even took us into the evening covered the basics, like cloud adoption, target operating models, and data literacy. It included deep dives into data democratization, analytics engineering, and FinOps. Finally, we also talked at length about scaling your business with cloud-native software engineering practices, embedding shared responsibility for a secure cloud environment, and growing your business in new regions like China.

One of the sessions, by Luuk Figdor (Sr. Sports Technology Specialist, EMEA, AWS), showed attendees how AWS uses advanced data applications to enhance the professional sports viewing experience.

"Technology adoption is a challenge. You have to trust technology’s ability to take over tasks. Grow this confidence through education and examples of cost-effectiveness, easy scaling, and better sustainability. There is no single solution. However, the cloud does offer many options to automate and boost productivity. For us, this means we can personalize and offer end-users increasingly specific content,” Figdor said.

Luuk Figdor, AWS, in conversation with Renald Buter during Club Cloud

Being successful with Cloud and Data

Cloud and data are hot topics, but how do you become truly successful? Joost Olieroock (Data & Analytics Lead, Guidion) shared his experiences setting up a data team in a scale-up environment without losing focus on human needs. "Data capability is a huge challenge. It involves developing a data strategy, building infrastructure, and professionalizing the team. Imagine scaling up data that is spread across the entire company; it’s tough," Joost explains.

"We have set up a data warehouse, established a data team, and changed our way of working. Now we can focus on centralization, increasing data usage, and implement predictive modeling."

Organizational Transformation

Introducing cloud or data impacts every part of your business, and Club Cloud wouldn’t be complete without addressing this topic. Among others, we listened to Danone share how it established data literacy organization-wide and partook in a lively discussion with EV Box’s CIO Madelein Smit about Google Cloud, data analytics, security, and tech team diversity.

EV Box sees how partners with a specific focus can advance their business, such as Snowflake, whom the company works with for data analytics. But how does one organize this ecosystem smartly and efficiently?

Other challenges that were mentioned during the week include finding the right people (Sabine Scheffer, Data Scientist, Gall & Gall), redefining value, and using data to better serve their customers, consumers, employees, and suppliers, and overall change management (Ciaran Jetten, Sr. Manager Global Analytics Transformation, Heineken).

"To continue to deliver value, you have to change, and change comes with resistance. Evangelization, knowledge exchange and training are urgently needed to help people understand how to work with data. That’s why Heineken now has its own data academy, with more and more senior management training focusing on data." – Ciaran Jetten, Sr. Manager Global Analytics Transformation, Heineken.

Club Cloud

"Hearing experiences first-hand from end-users was considered very valuable, especially in rapidly changing industries, like food (Danone), tech (Kongsberg), and travel and aviation (Schiphol). Other great experiences were shared by, among others, Funda, Hema, GetInData, Königsweg, and Hashicorp. Workshops focusing on learning skills, like the ‘Accelerate your cloud adoption with the AWS Development Kit’ workshop, were also in high demand." – Bart Verlaat, CEO of Xebia’s cloud consultancy

Club Cloud aims to meet the growing demand for cloud knowledge, best practices, and a community of like-minded people so companies don’t have to reinvent the wheel. This conference would not have been possible without the help of our partners Microsoft, Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud, Databricks, Alibaba Cloud, Hashicorp, NATS, Cloud Health,, Coiled, Fivetran, and SODA, tech pioneers like DataBricks, and emerging niche solutions like Fivetran, Coiled, Soda, dbt, NATS, and Rapids.

As we indicated at the beginning, Xebia’s goal was to capture as much cloud-related as possible in one event. As hard as we tried, there is so much more ground left to cover. So rest assured you can expect more content to be shared through Club Cloud, including knowledge sessions and get-togethers. Register for free and join Club Cloud ->

Missed the event? Watch the streams of Club Cloud 2021

Marketing director with a knack for translating technological possibilities to valuable business applications. Walter is passionate about uncovering and addressing potential solutions through shareable content with a strategic backbone, and by connecting people.
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