The official PASS Blog is where you’ll find the latest blog posts from PASS community members and the PASS Board. Contributors share their thoughts and discuss a wide variety of topics spanning PASS and the data community.

My Thoughts on the PASS Pro Membership

I’d like to start out by saying thank you to the many community members who took part in focus groups and those of you who completed the membership survey, which contained key direction to support both the value that was built, and the price point for PASS Pro Membership. Comparing prices outside of ourselves to comparable organizations was key, and without our peers in the community who helped shape the end result; well, I can’t say thank you enough.

You may notice that in the months to follow, a price increase will occur in October. The initial introductory price was launched to give experienced PASS members the opportunity to become early adopters of the PASS Pro Membership at a reduced cost. The idea behind that is to take advantage of the new features PASS Pro Membership has to offer and help support the evolution of our organization. The future will hold exciting new features and will be introduced as soon as they are available; including the PASS Educational Series and Training Record.

Discussion points and questions are expected when something of this nature and magnitude is undertaken by the organization, and I will address some of these as we move through this post. A question that has come to me is “Do we get early bird $80 pricing in subsequent years?”. The answer is no; this is a one-time, introductory offer. We have engaged with members across the globe in order to develop a product and pricing structure that provides value for our global membership. That said, we plan to consider regional pricing options in the future where this makes sense for our members. For transparency, this was not completed at launch. I want to thank our peers in the community for once again providing this feedback.

Another question that has come up is around community leaders getting a discount on the annual rate. No, we will not be discounting the offering. This also pertains to my fellow Board members who are paying full price for our PASS Pro Membership.

Our goal is to ensure that live elements (PASS Community Connects sessions) included in the membership will be offered in different time zones to ensure global coverage. Challenging? Yes. Doable? Yes. Engagement from the community will be key here in order to make this possible and we look forward to working with our hosts to make this happen.

Through the PASS Pro membership we will be launching exclusive content with the introduction of our Educational Series and compensating speakers who deliver exclusive content for this Educational Series. It is important that this content is exclusively available to PASS Pro Members, which means a lot of work for our speakers. I want to take a moment to recognize each one of our speakers, not just for this, but for their tireless efforts in helping our community to continue to grow. Much respect.

Wendy’s pre-launch blog post detailed the benefits that are included in the PASS Pro Membership. One question I saw come up was around the download access to PASS Summit 2019 Learning Pathways and what that entails (I believe Steve Jones asked this question). These downloads will include the following pathways:

  • AI for Everyone
  • Becoming an Azure Data Engineer
  • Cloud Migration
  • Communication & Collaboration
  • Data Security
  • Data Visualization and Storytelling
  • Linux for SQL Server Professionals
  • Modernizing with SQL Server 2019
  • SQL Performance for the Developer
  • Technical Leadership

In the months following launch, we will be introducing exciting new features as they become available. Now, some won’t see the value of these initial benefits. I get it; I truly do. Having the community’s voice to help shape the membership thus far has been invaluable, and let’s face it, depending on where you are at in your career this may or may not be suitable for you out of the gate. To some it will be a game changer.

Maybe somewhere along your career journey PASS has helped you, and you just want to give back. Upgrading to PASS Pro Membership is a way to do this by supporting your community and contributing to our future.

There are 3 content related offerings as a part of PASS Pro currently.

1. PASS Summit 2019 Learning Pathways. PASS owns the right to the session recordings and is lawfully entitled to distribute the recordings. This is stipulated in the PASS Summit speaker contract. PASS Summit recordings are bundled and sold every year for an additional fee to either attendees or non-attendees. They have therefore always been behind a paywall.

2. PASS Community Connects. These are not "content" sessions in that those that volunteer to moderate are not asked to create any content for these sessions. Moderators do not have to be seasoned speakers, simply someone willing to show up and converse with fellow community members around a set topic.

3. Educational Series (available in October). The speakers that have been contracted to create exclusive content for the PASS Pro membership will be compensated.

In doing an initiative like this I understand that we can’t please everyone. I also know that there will be questions along the way; I’m here as someone who wants to continue to help our community grow and with the above information, I am being open and transparent with what I know. Again, I can’t thank the community enough for their involvement to date. I’ve personally received feedback from those involved in the process and it has been a pleasure.

Finally, I want to thank our Community Leaders, many of whom engaged with us as we refined our messaging, and finalized the details of PASS Pro Membership. In being a past group leader, and in conversations with our peers in the community, the need for messaging to help support this initiative comes to mind. We have provided materials to our group leaders to help support you in this. A huge help of course will be to post, retweet, and share any announcement through your various means and networks – thank you again to those of you who have.

Looking toward the future, my hope is we can all come together, continue to help the community grow, and have some fun along the way.

We > Me

Chris Yates

Christopher Yates
About the author

Chris Yates is a Vice President | Director of Data and Architecture with over 16 years of experience in the SQL industry. He is a Microsoft Data Platform MVP, as well as Director-at-Large for PASS. His experience includes design and implementation of both OLTP and OLAP solutions, as well as assessment and implementation of SQL Server environments for best practices, performance, and high availability solutions accompanied by a strong development background.

Chris enjoys helping others in the SQL Server community and does this by contributing to several SQL forums, creating “The SQL Professor”, and speaking at several SQL functions. His passion and focus is not only on technology but also helping others along their way and career path.

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