So here I am, a 7-year infrastructure sales rep at a crossroads with a chance to transition. I have made a great career helping out my customers lower the cost of commodity hardware through our third-party maintenance and buyback programs. It is straightforward, helps the bottom line, and needed by many enterprise IT shops. So why change? Life is pretty good, right? I think the big moment for me was on a call with one of my maintenance customers who was interested to learn what Relus does with the public cloud. Our client was so interested in our service offerings with migrations, big data, and DevOps that I thought he would jump through the phone and hug us. Interestingly, I had saved that client a lot of money on hardware support and never had this response. I knew I wanted more of this feeling….

All of a sudden, I’m now a cloud consultant for our fastest-growing business at Relus, Relus Cloud. I’m trying to deal with information overload with terms like CICD, Spark, Hadoop, refactor, replatform, containers, and on and on. I am still helping my customers reduce on-premises support costs, but now I’m making my way to the other side of the fence with more of a Consumption Economics state of mind. (Read that book, my VAR and legacy OEM friends. It will blow your mind.)  

There are lots of fast-paced changes here, and I’m loving every minute of it. Before, customers wanted me off the phone to get to their next task. Now, I have to tell them I have a hard stop with back-to-back meetings. Customers yearn for this knowledge. Let’s be honest: If you have AWS in your background, you can bring value to the market that others can’t. On top of that, I noticed our Relus Cloud events and big conferences like re:Invent (hope to see you there this year) are truly informative, and customers and prospects want to go by the booths to learn more about what we’ve done with other customers. We get visits from plenty of engineers, but we also get lots of CEOs! The other big change for me is talking to application folks as opposed to data center operations. They need help and want to take more ownership of the IT stack, which is refreshing. So why do I state all of this?

A couple reasons:

One, we are hiring. If you are an engineer, architect, or salesperson in that traditional infrastructure world, come on aboard! Also, let me know if you’re interested in working with Relus Cloud.

Two, if you are with a company that needs help with cloud adoption, you are not alone. Many Fortune 500s I talk to are in desperate need of help. Pivot now. Don’t wait. The worst that happens is that you stop the POC and realize you just spent 500 bucks on AWS.

Fail fast, achieve greatness, and focus on your business—not blinking lights.

I know I’m not the first person to talk about the benefits of public cloud, but I think we’re approaching a pivotal time in which organizations need to make a decision to get on board or not. And, in the meantime, if you still have aging gear from the likes of NetApp, EMC, IBM, HP, Dell, etc., there are great options out there to lower that cost.

So “Cloud on,” folks! Get ready for the revolution that is continuing to happen. As I learn more about areas of Kubernetes, Docker, platform services, machine learning, etc., I will be writing more on these topics.

I would like to close with this quote from my favorite book on the IT revolution, The Phoenix Project:

“We need to create a culture that reinforces the value of taking risks and learning from failure and the need for repetition and practice to create mastery.”

About Josh Schaefer

As a Sales Team Lead at Relus Technologies, Josh Schaefer works with companies from the SMB space to Fortune 100 enterprises, helping to drive down costs when acquiring and maintaining their data center infrastructure. Along with the infrastructure side of the house, Josh helps assist customers to prepare for their journey to the cloud. Prior to joining the team at Relus, Josh worked as an Account Executive in the independent channel market and knows the value that pre-owned hardware and third-party maintenance bring to the IT space. In his spare time, you can find Josh spending time with his wife Lizzie and newborn baby girl, working on his home, fishing, hunting, or golfing.