Guest post by Chamod Shehanka Perera

From inception to success, organizing KCD Sri Lanka 2023

KCD Sri Lanka 2023 took place on September 9th at Trace Experts City, Colombo. It was a one-day conference with learning and networking with Cloud Native enthusiasts from across the Sri Lanka. I had the honor of leading the organizing team along with Kanchana Wickremasinghe and Kemila De Silva and I’m going to share our experience in organizing this remarkable event.

We held an online event in 2022, largely because of the then-current uncertainty surrounding the pandemic, but also because it was our first event. We all agreed at the time that an online event made the most sense for everyone.

The Genesis of KCD Sri Lanka

We were doing monthly meetups and webinars in our Kubernetes Sri Lanka meetup group and since 2020 our main organizer Kanchana Wickremasinghe wanted to organize a KCD Sri Lanka because we have built up a community and having a KCD will benefit all community members because people will be able to skill up their knowledge, network with other community members, find or share job opportunities, and have fun at the event. We had hoped for a KCD in 2021, which we were unable to achieve, but we were able to hold an online KCD in 2022.

The Road to 2023: Organizing Triumphs

When we started organizing this year, we recruited community experienced organizers and volunteers to make things simpler for us. Then, for the full team, we used microservice architecture, as used in software engineering, to organize this event, dividing them into loosely coupled teams depending on their expertise. That’s why we had following teams:

Core Team — While the core team made final decisions it was always based on consensus from the entire team.

Program Team — This team is responsible for curating the conference program.

Dev & Registration Team — To develop the website and handle the registration process.

Finance Team — In charge of managing all of our spending.

Public Relation Teams — In charge of social media and other such things.

Logistics Team — Responsible for all logistical aspects of the conference

How we saw the big picture and prioritized things

We managed and tracked all of our tasks using GitHub Project boards, which was excellent because if we needed to discuss something specific, we could do so directly from the GitHub issue, and it was simple to keep track of things.

KCD Sri Lanka 2023 GitHub project board

Event promotion while highlighting the beauty of Sri Lanka

We came up with the idea of making video clips to advertise the event while emphasizing the beautiful sites in Sri Lanka; most of the organizers and volunteers contributed in this process.

Feel free to watch all the clips we have made:

KCD Sri Lanka OC 2023 team reels

The Unforgettable Moments at KCD Sri Lanka 2023

Basically, we had a good time! We are pleased that we were able to provide high-quality information to the community. The 2023 chapter sold 300 tickets, making it a huge success.
We had 15 speakers who gave excellent speeches and 1 panel discussion.

Three persons on the stage as speakers of KCD Sri Lanka 2023
KCD Sri Lanka 2023 event hall full with participants

View more photos here

Facing and Overcoming Difficulties

There’s no purpose in hiding them.

In comparison to previous year, we had a difficult time finding sponsors this year. Because to global inflation, it was difficult to get sponsors this time. In addition, owing to logistical issues, we had to repay attendees who had bought pre-merchandise, Furthermore, due to a production issue, we had to delay the event’s start time by 1.5 hours, which was unexpected, but these things are unavoidable on event day.

Most overseas speakers who were approved through the CFP withdrew their submissions due to travel financial constraints.

What’s next?

So, until the next chapter of KCD Sri Lanka is organized, we will continue to hold monthly meetups and webinars in the Kubernetes Sri Lanka meetup group. If you would like to speak at the upcoming KCD Sri Lanka 2024 or Kubernetes Sri Lanka, please contact us or sponsor our events in such a beautiful way.

Please get in touch with us. We welcome you with open arms.

KCD Sri Lanka Bevy

Kubernetes Sri Lanka