devopsdays Chicago - propose

Call for proposals opens Friday, Apr 1, 2016.
Call for proposals closes Wednesday, Jun 1, 2016.
Selected proposals will be announced on Friday, Jul 1, 2016.

Types of Talks

Session Talks

30 minute slots that will have the full attention of all attendees, as everybody will be in the main presentation room together.

Ignite Talks

Presented during their own specific session in the afternoon on both Tuesday and Wednesday. These are 5 minutes slots with slides changing every 15 seconds (20 slides total) which are also presented to all attendees in main presentation room.

There will also be Open Spaces allowing for additional conversations to take place. Those topics will be suggested and selected just prior to Open Spaces on the day of the event.


Original Content

Content not yet presented at other conferences, or a new angle to an existing problem. DevOpsDays is one of the best events to learn about the DevOps movement. Look for ways to present or explain subjects that are related to DevOps. Interesting ways to explain DevOps to those that are not familiar with the term or how it can help their team and/or organization is highly encouraged

New Presenters

People who are new to the space and have insightful things to say and share. There are a number of great presenters on a variety of DevOps subjects. However, we want to encourage new voices and thoughts to the space.

No Vendor Pitches

The quickest way to be denied to present is to pitch your company’s product or service. As much as we value vendors and sponsors, we just don’t think this is the right forum. This is a participatory event in which everyone in attendance is encouraged to interact and discuss a wide range of DevOps topics. It is not a forum to pitch your services. You can demo at your table or during Open Space. Additionally, Gold sponsors will be given a 60-second slot to have the full attention of the audience in order to share a little bit about your company and it’s offerings. Please keep this in mind when submitting proposals. If we feel that you may be using it as an opportunity to “sell” your company, you’ll likely be declined.

Compelling & Fun

No one likes to attend conferences where the presentations are dry and hard to sit through. We are looking for topics (and presenters) who can deliver a compelling message and perhaps even make it fun. We don’t expect comedic-like delivery, but find ways to keep it entertaining to a certain degree if possible.


Be as specific as possible

CFP submissions that aren’t clear in what they intend to deliver and how it is useful to the audience won’t be selected. It is possible that organizers may reach out to you for clarification of an abstract, but try to be as descriptive as possible. A description of about 20 lines is about right. Detail is good but not as important as explaining why your proposal would be interesting to our participants. Explain to us why your proposal has value to the group and DevOps space in general.

Propose your own talk

We understand that many who are interested in presenting are very busy. Trust us. We know. However, it’s best to submit your own CFP rather than having someone from a marketing team (or 3rd party) submit. We want to be able to reach out to the presenter for clarification on abstracts if necessary. We may possibly even suggest a slight modification to the talk to make it fit the overall agenda and voice of DevOpsDays. Working through anyone other than the person actually presenting the talk is very frustrating and may result in turning down a possibly great talk.

Nominations welcome

If you know someone who has content or experience relevant to the DevOps conversation, please point us in their direction! It’s a great big world out there. It’s likely that you know of folks who have given killer presentations that really made a difference in your understanding of DevOps. Let us know who they are, or better yet, encourage them to submit a CFP.

Multiple proposals welcome

There is no limit on the number of CFP’s you can submit. In fact, the more the better. We encourage you to submit more than one. It’s possible that a talk you propose may also be proposed in a similar way from another person. In that case, we’ll have to pick just one to avoid too much overlap or duplication of topics. The more CFP’s you submit, the better your chances of being selected is. Just be sure to follow the criteria mentioned above.


Go to, sign up/in, and submit your proposal. Please let us know via email or twitter if you encounter technical issues during submission.


We encourage new and seasoned speakers. If you’re interested in working with a mentor to develop an idea into a session or ignite, please reach out via email at . We will do our best to provide options for mentorship pairing. At the very least, we’ll do our best to provide mentorship ourselves. :)

Travel Assistance

Please let us know if you need assistance with travel costs including hotel, flight, and parking. This will not affect our decision-making one way or the other, but it is good to know as we finalize our budget.