In 2019 I decided to try and get out and about a bit more and to start exploring what there is these days in terms of IT community around the local area.
Newcastle Power BI User Group
The Power BI user group is a new group started in 2019 and is ran by some of the guys from the team at NCFE. They are also heavily involved with the data platform user group but have recognised there is an opportunity to reach a wider audience by branching out into the business super user community too.
The first event I went too was very impressive with around 40 people turning up for a night around some interesting deep dive Power BI content. I was fortunate enough to talk at their 2nd meeting about the wider Power Platform and positioning of products and what does what.
This is a brand new user group but the guys running it have ran user groups before and I think this will be one of the most poplar user groups around in time. They have around 130 members already in just a few months.
Newcastle Azure User Group
The Newcastle Azure User Group has been going for a bit longer than Power BI. Its ran by Richard Hooper who is a committed and big supporter of Azure. Ive been to a couple of the meetings and the quality is very good. There are around 140 people who are members.
You can find out more info on this link:
CRM Saturday in Glasgow
At the end of January, myself and 2 friends went up to Glasgow to visit the CRM Saturday event being held there. I tend to do quite a bit of work involving Dynamics so a change to catch up with the latest and greatest happenings being taught by some of the excellent individuals in the Dynamics community is one my definitely will go to events.
CRM Saturday isn’t a regular event, its annual I think and although it’s a bit futhark away quality and content are the reasons I am putting it on the list.
More info is available here: http://365saturday.com/dynamics/scotland-glasgow/
Newcastle Data Platform User Group
What was once the Newcastle SQL Server User Group has been rebranded the Newcastle Data Platform User Group. This makes a lot of sense as the data platform today is much more than just SQL so it allowes for a wider scope of topics and more users while encouraging members to get out of their comfort zone and to learn new things.
I haven’t had a change to go to one of these sessions yet but its on my todo list soon.
More info is available here: https://www.meetup.com/Newcastle_DPaC/
NE Bytes has been going for years and covers a good general range of topics on the Microsoft technology stack. Ive been to a few events in the past and presented at a few also. It’s a nice group of people and definitely one to check out.
More info on this link: http://www.nebytes.net/
Haintons .net User Group
This user group has also been going for a little while and I must admit its probably the one I know least about. I haven’t had the chance to go to one of their events yet. The group has 250+ members and has ran >12 events now so they are well established.
I think they split their time between Teesside and Tyneside but in a way that’s a good thing as it brings more people into the group.
More info on the user group – https://www.meetup.com/HaintonDotNetNE/
As you can see the IT community in the North East has many more options than it used to a few years ago. The most important thing right now is for people in the area to plan to go to the events and turn up on the night. Its difficult for all user groups these days with the challenge of competing with so many different things that can easily pinch your time.
Technology User Group
Technology User Group is a nationwide user group who run day long events at multiple cities around the UK. They normally do 2 per year in Newcastle. The content tends to have a slight IT Pro, Technology Strategy and Architecture angle to it. There is a really great bunch of lads organise this user group and the attendees are a very friendly bunch too. Ive had the pleasure to present at TechUG a few times and its definitely one to check out.
One final note, There is a site called NE TECH Diary which has
If I have missed any user groups or key events in this article please add to the comments.