What's your job about?
VMware is a leading cloud infrastructure service and business mobility organisation that accelerates its customers' digital transformation, my role as a consultant is to ensure the successful implementation and adoption of VMware technologies, ensuring customers' IT and business goals are achieved. The consultant position fits into the wider Professional Services Organisation of VMware which is responsible for delivering services to maximise the value of their investment with VMware technologies.
Within a week at my job I could be doing anything from gathering customer requirements for a solution design, to developing an integration to automate an existing manual process, or spending time on enablement brushing up my skill sets. My technology focus has been on all things Software-defined within the datacentre, though the specific technologies I have had an interest in are SDN (Software-defined Networking) and automation.
VMware as a company is more traditionally known as the defacto enterprise hypervisor company, though in more recent years they have evolved to having a wide range of solutions to assist companies with their digital transformation. When I initially started the graduate program I had the task of explaining to my parents and relatives “what VMware does”. Without an enterprise IT background this may be something which could be difficult to understand. After a few attempts, my refined answer was “VMware provides software that helps build, run, and secure applications for the cloud and allow business to deliver enterprise-grade digital experiences to their employees”
What's your background?
For the majority of my early childhood and school years, I lived on the Central Coast where I attended my local primary and high school. This was where I started my first job in a supermarket working as a customer service representative.
After school, I began my Engineering Degree at the University of Technology in Sydney where I commuted for a few years whilst also completing my first internship at Cisco Systems. This is where I solidified my interest in networking, security and IT infrastructure. After the internship ended, I started another role as a Software Test Analyst and decided to move down to Sydney to experience life living out of home. As a Test Analyst, I quickly realised that I was much more interested in networking and moved into an infrastructure role at a managed services provider. This is where I worked for the rest of my time at university.
In my last year at university, I elected to go on exchange overseas so I decided to move to Europe for 18 months and completed a semester at KTH in Stockholm, Sweden. I also took some time to travel around parts of Europe. After coming back to Sydney I completed my thesis with university whilst also searching for graduate roles in my area of interest. This is where I came across the VMware graduate program and after a successful interview process, I received an offer which I accepted and have now been with the company in the Professional Services consulting team for the past 2 years.
Could someone with a different background do your job?
Definitely, the primary role of a consultant is to understand the customers' requirements and know how best to align each solution to their specific needs. This is something that is quite transferrable and the technical skills required is something that can be learned over time. Like most roles, communication and interpersonal soft skills are both qualities really help you interact with the customer and other stakeholders to ensure you are truly understanding them and their requirements. One thing I will say is that it helps to have a keen interest in technology and the way in which it can be applied to help business transform.
What's the coolest thing about your job?
One of the most rewarding aspects of my job is working directly with customers and providing services that I personally see make a significant impact. I also value the opportunity to continually improve my technical expertise and communication skills every day as a consultant. More broadly, the company has a wide variety of companies it works with, seeing how VMware’s technology is used as a force for good within these organisations to help others and improve the quality of life for people around the world is something I am particularly proud of.
What are the limitations of your job?
As a consultant working for a company with such a wide portfolio of solutions and services such as VMware, you are often treated as a subject matter expert across all of these technologies. When working with customers which times, can be quite daunting. Additionally, working directly with a number of different customers at any one time requires you to be flexible with each of their processes and practices. If you are someone who prefers a set routine without any change this is something you might find challenging.
3 pieces of advice for yourself when you were a student...
Travel overseas with the university if you can! Experiencing the different lifestyles and cultures of other people whilst on exchange was something that definitely opened my eyes and broadened my perspective on the world.
Network at each and every occasion. Know that each and every conversation, the next one could provide an opportunity that you never would have been exposed to otherwise.
Use your time wisely. Whilst studying at university, you can find yourself with free time during or outside the semester. Make sure to capitalise each any every day, as once you start working in a full-time or graduate role you will never get that time back!