Jared Matfess's Blog

Having fun with SharePoint, Office 365, and Microsoft Azure

The Definitive Guide for When to use What — October 28, 2017
SharePoint Saturday Toronto Slides! — August 19, 2017

SharePoint Saturday Toronto Slides!

Wanted to thank the amazing crew of speakers, sponsors, organizers, and attendees that made SharePoint Saturday Toronto amazing. I was delighted to speak to a pretty full room about “When to use What in Office 365”.

SPS Toronto Session

For those of you who came out to my session feel free to grab the slides below:

Definitive Guide For When to use What – Matfess

Thanks again for having me, and I look forward to seeing you again next year!


SharePoint Saturday NYC Wrap-up + Cincy SPUG Remote Presentation — July 30, 2017

SharePoint Saturday NYC Wrap-up + Cincy SPUG Remote Presentation

These past few days have been a complete whirlwind of fun, SharePoint, and chatbots! šŸ™‚

Thursday evening I was fortunate to deliver a remote session to the Cincinnati SharePoint Users Group on “Building Chatbots with the Microsoft Bot Framework”. Remote sessions are awesome because they expose me to a whole different crowd of people that I wouldn’t normally have the chance to meet. Then on Friday I headed down to New York for one of my favorite events – SharePoint Saturday NYC.

They put me up in Broadway which was the same room as my epic SharePoint Framework session from last year. Given that I was last slot of the day, the crowd was a lot lighter but the engagement was amazing. I had so many great questions and almost all hands were raised by the end when I asked if folks were going to build their own chatbots after checking out my session.


For those that have asked – here are my Building Chatbots

I can’t wait for next year!


The End of the Free SharePoint Saturday Events? — September 19, 2016

The End of the Free SharePoint Saturday Events?

This weekend I had the pleasure to present two sessions at SharePoint Saturday Charlotte at the University of Charlotte. This was my first time outside the airport and I really enjoyed the people & atmosphere of the city. Unfortunately some travel issues prevented me from finding much time to really see the city or mingle with other speaker, but I still had a nice time.

My first session of the day was “Integrating O365 & Salesforce.com using Microsoft PowerApps & Flow” which was very lightly attended. I’m not sure if it was because the keynote ran over it’s allotted time or that rooms were on different floors, but I was surprised that more folks weren’t interested in connecting Salesforce & O365. Regardless of number of attendees, I think the talk itself went pretty well and it gave me one more dry run before I record it for Collab365. My second session, “Modern SharePoint Development Workflow using Node, Bower, Yeoman and more!”Ā had quite a few more attendees but still not the same crowd that I’ve recently seen inĀ Boston, New York, or even Pittsburgh. When I spoke with the organizers it sounded like they had over a 60% no-show rate which is just slightly higher than the average 50% rate that most events see.

As an organizer, I know these events take a tremendous amount of planning from securing a venue, to lining up speakers, coordinating food, to making sure that sponsors are all set with their logistics. Estimating breakfast & lunch as got to the best most difficult & wasteful part of coordinating a SharePoint Saturday. No matter what you do it’s inevitable that there is going to be too much food.Ā As an organizer you always want to ensure that people are properly hydrated, fed, and taken care of. If you have 200 people register for your event, it can be stressful to not purchase food for the worst case scenario (200) attendees. Typically I try to factor in 25% no-show even though I know it is going to be higher. As an organizer there is no worse feeling that running out of food, even for a free event. As an organizer of a smaller user group – the amount of leftover food we had at least year’s SharePoint Saturday event could have paid for half the user group meetings this year.

I think the initial charter for SharePoint Saturday which was to provide a platform for learning with no boundaries (i.e.; free to all attendees) was quite noble. However, after attending dozens of SharePoint Saturdays I can’t turn my eye to the inevitable waste that is associated with the events. From food, t-shirts, handouts, and swag, it can be alarming how much is leftover after an event. I think one of the problems with the free events is that registrants do not always associate a value to the event. When it’s free, there’s nothing lost if they don’t attend. But, if there was a nominal fee – then they would have made that investment and perhaps they would think twice about not attending. I don’t think a charge somewhere between $5-10 would create that much of a barrier to entry.

When speaking with the teams that organize the Cloud Saturday event (which is paid) in Chicago & Atlanta – they typically see a 90% attendance which is phenomenal. With sponsorship money becoming more difficult to secure, I wouldn’t be surprised to see more events change to the nominal charge model. If anything it also helps to alleviate some of the stress of obtaining sponsorship money when many ISV’s are beginning to withdraw from participating in some of these community events.

SharePoint Saturday Pittsburgh Slides & Code — August 6, 2016
SharePoint Saturday NYC – Slides, Github & More — July 30, 2016

SharePoint Saturday NYC – Slides, Github & More

First off, a huge thanks to all those that came out to my session, sorry for the packed room! SharePoint Saturday New York is one of my favorite events, and I loved all the great conversations.

Paul Tavares took an awesome panoramic picture from my room, I couldn’t believe how many folks showed up to talk about Modern SharePoint Development.


Here are the slidesĀ SharePoint Modern Web Development

Also here’s the Github project –Ā https://github.com/JaredMatfess/modernspdev


SharePoint Saturday Boston Wrap-up — June 15, 2015
SharePoint Saturday Philly – Slides & Code — March 9, 2015
SharePoint Saturday New Hampshire Slides Posted — October 18, 2014
SharePoint Saturday New Jersey slides — September 26, 2014