Introducing Friday Feature! Each Friday of the month, we will be featuring a Tech Community Member to share their career experiences. We are excited to introduce this week’s Friday Feature— @Jaap Brasser! Since 2015, Jaap has been recognized as a Microsoft MVP for Cloud and Datacenter Management. Jaap is a Cloud and Automation Engineer for IPsoft based in the Netherlands.
Tell us a little bit about who you work for, your role in the organization, and if your organization has transitioned to the cloud.
I work for an outsourcing and automation company, we deliver automated solutions to our clients to manage, improve and transform their IT infrastructure. As part of my role, I assist customers with improving their infrastructure and automating frequently recurring issues away. We see more of our clients moving towards cloud solutions, different clients at different speeds. The demand for moving resources to cloud-based infrastructure is something I expect to continue to grow in the coming time.
Your LinkedIn bio starts with “customer-oriented,” which seems popping up more as a focus across IT organizations. Would you say your customer-centric approach is unique to you or do you feel that your organization and others in IT are also becoming more customer-focused? Or has IT always been this way?
No matter what your role is within an organization I believe customer focus is a great attitude towards your work. Regardless if your position requires direct interaction with a customer, being customer-oriented gives you a different perspective which can enable you to produce better results. I feel the focus on the customer experience is something that is something that goes beyond IT, a 21st-century company is a company that is focused or even obsessed by the customer experience. Looking at the successful IT companies in the past decade the common theme with those is their focus on what their customer wants and how they can best provide that service.
What do you think your most valuable skill is?
My most valuable skill is being able to communicate, having deep technical knowledge is a great thing. By being able to communicate effectively, I can get to the root of a customer's problem or request. By doing so I am able to get to the source of a problem in a more efficient way and by understanding what is being requested it becomes easier to find the appropriate technical solution.
In addition to that, I have a passion for sharing knowledge, training others and making people enthusiastic about the technologies that I am passionate about. By giving presentations, attending conferences and being part of technical communities.
Tech communities and forums are extremely common across the IT world. What role do these technical communities play into your own career?
Tech communities play a large role in my work when a question goes beyond 'How to fix Y?', then it is great to have a technical community to fall back upon. I am active in a lot of communities and I have learned a lot by being active in online technical communities. I feel contributing to them has enriched me as a professional and has it has taught me a lot about different technologies used in scenarios I did not even imagine they would be used in. It has brought benefits to me as a person as well, I have made friends around the globe because of our shared passions for technology.
My advice to anyone interested in starting a career in IT is to find something, a product, a platform or a service that you are enthusiastic about. Find and connect with others that share your passion and build your experience from that point onward. By having like-minded people around you, it becomes possible to grow your knowledge faster and more efficiently, which will allow you to become an expert in your field.