During the week of January 13, 32 Atlassians and 76 third-party ecosystem developers descended upon the Wekopa Resort and Conference Center (30 minutes from Phoenix, Arizona) for App Week Scottsdale.
When determining the theme of an App Week, we look to our company goals for guidance. Our main mission is to provide the best possible customer experience in our cloud products, and ecosystem is a key part of that experience. We want customers who have enjoyed using Marketplace apps in their server products to continue using them in our cloud products without having to start from scratch because there is no portability of app data. That's why the theme for this App Week was Cloud App Migration and Trust.
We brought members of the App Data Migration team to help developers build both data migration paths for customers of their server app to their cloud app equivalent. In addition, members of the Ecosystem Security team were on hand to help developers build with security in mind.
Additional teams were on hand to help developers with any questions they may have around specifics of the product they were extending. This included teams from Jira Software, Jira Service Desk, Confluence, Bitbucket, Atlassian Access, and Strategic Partnerships.
How App Week works
App Week is an invite-only event for our ecosystem partners. We review each application that comes in and invite only those who specify that they are going to work on the areas that match the theme. We also are looking for the customer impact of each partner based on the number of installs their apps have.
For this event, we heavily favored partners with a high number of installs of their server app as well as partners that specified that they were working on app data migration paths.
App Week starts on Monday with a series of presentations from Atlassians. For this event, we broke the presentations up so that the sessions before lunch were directly related to the theme of App Week, Cloud App Migration and Trust. After lunch, we had a few presentations from the product teams that were in attendance about Roadmaps, new features, and general evangelism of what's possible with our products.
On Tuesday through Thursday, we would start the day with a stand-up. We asked a representative from each company to tell us what they worked on the previous day, what they planned to work on that day, and most importantly, if they were hindered by any blockers. Letting us know what blockers they had allowed us to be able to quickly address those issues immediately after the stand-up.
Most of the day after standup is what we call hack time. This is heads-down time where they can work on their code for their app, seek help from Atlassians, or schedule time with specific teams in unstructured breakout sessions.
At the end of each day, we organized 45-minute "firepit chats." We crowdsourced topics during the day that would be of interest, and we had Atlassians at each table moderating the discussions.
Friday is demo day, where the expectation is that everyone gives a quick 3-minute demonstration of what they accomplished during the week. If they didn't have a demo to share we asked that they come up and share what they learned.
The demos at the end of the week are a great litmus test for how much value was driven by the event. In this case, 12 of the companies in attendance were able to show working demos of an app data migration path from server to cloud! Other demos showed net new cloud app concepts or new functionality for existing cloud apps.
In addition, we sent out a survey to all attendees to find out how App Week went from their perspective. Our goal for a successful event was to achieve a 4.6 CSAT rating or higher. We asked other questions in the survey to see where we could do better and to understand a little how the week went for them. We reached our success goal and then some with a CSAT score of 4.7!
Here are some quotes from attendees about the event:
“Our team, with Atlassian guidance, was able to create a migration process in about three days, moving most of the data from the Xporter app in a Jira Server instance to Jira Cloud.”
– Paulo Alves, Xpand IT
“As a Platinum Solution Partner, our work centers around helping our clients get the most out of the Atlassian Tools and apps in the ecosystem. With the dramatic increase in requests for viability evaluations and implementations of Atlassian Cloud migrations, the information gained during App Week will be invaluable in continuing to craft the best solutions for our clients.”
– Rodney West, Isos Technology
App Weeks are invaluable sources of knowledge for Atlassians as well; many of the teams blog internally afterwards to share what they learned from the ecosystem community. The last App Week we held in June even inspired one Atlassian to change teams: Ecosystem Security's own Matthew Hart!
All work and no play… makes App Week a dull event
While we did work hard, we made sure to include some downtime during the week.
On Monday, we held a happy hour networking event after hours. With some hors d’oeuvres and drinks, attendees got to know one another better.
On Wednesday, we took everyone off-site for a western experience. There was barbecue, s’mores, cornhole, and cowboy games all outside in the brisk Arizona night. Interestingly, s'mores was a new concept for many attendees and I wound up teaching them how to make one.
In addition to the officially planned events, strategic partnerships manager Michael Lauricella, who lives in the Phoenix area, organized an outing to watch the Phoenix Suns NBA basketball team play. About 20 attendees went to the game, where they received a warm welcome on the jumbotron.
Next App Week
We're in the midst of planning the next App Week. No contracts have been signed yet, but we’re targeting June 2020 in Eastern Europe. Mark your calendars and stay tuned for more details!