Graduate pathway careers that extend beyond borders
“Ten years is a long time to spend in one job.”
This year marks a decade since I joined the Macquarie Cloud Services (MCS) family, so I’ve been hearing that sentence a lot recently. While many people around my age tend to change jobs every two or three years, I’ve never had the urge to.
There’s one simple reason for that: I wouldn’t describe my journey at MCS over the past decade as just a “job”. It’s been a proper career pathway, with opportunities and challenges to match. I’ve developed, grown and expanded my horizons.
I’ve even had the opportunity to expand my horizons literally with a recent trip to Singapore, to one of the world’s leading security conferences. More on that later.
First, some background information.
My MCS journey started when I was in my final year of a computer science degree. I was recruited into the Graduate Program, as an engineer in the Hosting Management Centre (HMC). This was an unbelievable opportunity to undertake some hands-on, industry based experience to supplement the theory-based stuff from uni.
It really helped the penny to drop for me. Classroom-based learning is necessary, of course, but for many people you don’t really “get it” until you see “it” (whatever that may be for your area of learning) applied in a practical setting. That was definitely me.
For that final year, I was juggling both uni and my full-time role at MCS. That may sound like a nightmare from a workload perspective, but it really wasn’t. My team at MCS were so supportive and flexible, so I never really felt stretched or burned out – even at exam time.
I spent two years as an entry-level (Tier 1) engineer in the HMC, and during that time I took full advantage of the opportunity to undertake a different industry certification every six months or so – all funded and supported by MCS. Even then I had an eye on the next step in my career – making my way up to a Tier 2 senior engineer in the HMC.
By the time I became a Tier 2, uni was behind me and I was really starting to spread my wings. As a senior member of the team I was able to take on more complex responsibilities, as well as acting as a mentor to the new grads coming into the team. This was such a fantastic learning curve – not only was I learning technical skills, but also the people and leadership skills that it can be hard to gain in technical roles.
Another two years in that role and I was ready for yet another step forward. This time, I knew it was time to look at life beyond the HMC. With the support of my managers, I moved across to the MCS Command team. These wonderful people are responsible for designing our exceptional solutions and services, and making sure our customers are successful.
Stepping into the role of Solutions Engineer opened up a whole new perspective for me. While the role still had its technical engineering elements, suddenly I was thrust into the world of designing customer environments – where no two days are the same! We’re all about making sure every environment is tailored to the customer’s business requirements. We don’t do cookie cutter solutions – and that keeps life interesting.
More recently I’ve taken on the Senior Solutions Engineer role, which takes all those responsibilities and adds in a leadership component. I love the fact that not only am I solving problems for our customers, I’m also training and mentoring other engineers.
And now, onto Singapore.
Recently, MCS offered four people the opportunity to attend Black Hat Asia 2023 – one of the world’s leading cyber security conferences. I was thrilled to be selected as one of the Engineers Club winners, after a peer nomination process. Not only was it my first time visiting Singapore – I also knew it would be a great opportunity to network with other professionals from around the region and hear about new ideas and technologies.
There were so many great sessions within the conference. There was a lot of discussion about emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) and how they will impact the world of cyber security. The short answer is that no one really knows the answer to that just yet, although there are some amazing ideas out there.
The highlight of the trip for me was when the four MCS attendees came together for a team workshop offsite guided by our Group Executive James Mystakidis. As a group we focused on the topic of AI and how it might be applied within MCS in the months and years to come. Not only to drive better outcomes for our customers, but also to enhance processes and make our working lives better (and easier) within the business.
With my hand on my heart, I can see another 10 years ahead of me at MCS. That’s how much I enjoy working here. I’d like to move into our pre-sales area at some stage, and I’m confident I’ll have the support and opportunities to do it.
No matter who you are and which team you’re in at MCS, if you’re driven, passionate and interested in a particular area, you’ll have the support you need. And with those kinds of opportunities – you can probably see why job hopping loses its appeal!
Are you ready to move to the cloud?
Find out more about our Graduate Program here, which provides university graduates with the right training, experience and opportunities for an outstanding career.
Through our formal graduate training program you’ll find yourself equipped with multiple career paths in cyber security, networking, computing, cloud computing, software development through DevOps and automation.