After working for 10+ years for an ISP, I joined a public health and research institute. During my interview with them, I found out they were planning to upgrade their IT infrastructure. That was the main reason for the job opening. Up until then, I worked mainly in IT operations. This was my chance to take on the next challenge, that of an IT engineer. It was during that time that I got to know about ITQ, as they were the ones designing and implementing the new IT infrastructure. There was this one ITQ-er... Sjors Robroek. The man knew a lot! about a lot of stuff! I was sitting next to him while he was writing Powershell code in Notepad! Notepad! And when he was done, he copied and pasted it into Powershell and hit F5... and it ran without an error! I was so impressed by that, that I still remember that day like it was yesterday. After that, I searched online more about ITQ. Man, I was impressed by the names and the IT track records of many ITQ-ers. Somewhere in the back of my mind, I placed ITQ on a pedestal. During the IT infrastructure upgrade project, I felt I was not ready for ITQ. I needed years and years of experience to even consider joining ITQ and not to forget a lot more certificates. The health and research institute also had other soon-to-be-outdated infrastructure. New upgrade projects started shortly after finishing the upgrade of the main workload IT infrastructure. The next IT infrastructure was for the virtual desktop environment. Again, I had the opportunity to work together with ITQ-ers. During those projects, I learned a lot, but still had the feeling I was not ITQ-ready.

... and now, looking back after almost 3 years as an ITQ-er. I couldn’t have been more wrong! It has been a wonderful experience so far. I technically pushed myself to new heights. And, because VMware is no longer just a hypervisor vendor, the technical possibilities are expanding all the time. As a consultant, I could be helping one customer with vSAN while the next customer is looking towards moving to the cloud. The possibilities are simply endless. The buzzword of today will be considered legacy next week. And that’s what I like so much about IT. You simply can’t keep up with everything and you can’t stand still eighter.

One of the nice things about the ITQ culture is that whoever is working on new tech is always willing to share that knowledge. That makes it easy to stay up-to-date in this ever-evolving IT world. If I ever run into a situation where a customer needs help with a product I have no or limited knowledge of, I know I have a powerhouse of knowledge behind me ready to help me help the customer. That’s ITQ. That’s ITQ DNA. Internally and externally, ITQ has many programs to share knowledge. Before the pandemic, we had vAfternoons, on the last Friday of every month, a nice and informal get-together with the whole company. The first time I heard about it, I thought about the missed revenue. Imagine having all your consultants not work for half a day each month. Having experienced a couple of them, I can see the added value of the vAfternoons. Sadly, due to the pandemic, we had to come up with a COVID-proof variant of the vAfternoons, which we of course did! After all, we are the ITQ!

So, does working as an ITQ consultant feel like a dream come true? Yes, it does! It’s not just the technology, it’s the whole IT culture. It’s the way we stay in touch with each other. I never had lunch with the founder(s) of the company I was working for. Until I joined ITQ. Having lunch with the founders of ITQ is normal. And it’s that ITQ culture that makes this feel like my dream job!

Kabir Ali Virtualization Consultant

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