Jenna Barbuza and Ryan McFarland
What is Vertical6’s mission?
- Jenna: To elevate technology within our clients. We work with clients to kind of build up their technology from the bottom up. It could be a whole new infrastructure, it could be an application, or it could be just to help out there already on-site IT. As maybe they just have a really large company and they just need some help so we will help them move up.
What are your respective role in Vertical6?
- Jenna: I am the service operations manager, so I actually deal with the service desk which is Brian’s role so he is the service desk manager and then I also help out with the NOC, which is the network operations center. I am also very involved in the apprenticeship program, so I work closely to educate all of the new apprenticeship coming in, making sure that we are on top of new new training materials and new ways to train them (whether it’s technical or computer service, for we want to create an easy transition for them, as they don’t usually have too many technical skills coming from high school, or college.)
- Ryan: I’m the service desk manager, so I work closely with Jenna and i work with more day-to-day tasks and ticketing with all level technicians. I do assist with level two and not with network operations (as that’s usually handled by their manager.) Because I work closely with Jenna, so we work a lot towards finding best ways to training everybody, and make things easier for them (as they do hundreds of ticket a day.) There’s not a ton of guys out there; I think we’re at 10, where they work from 7 a.m til 8 p.m.
- Jenna: He’s that onset resource for any questions that they might have, like if they cannot figure out an issue, he’s that escalation resource.
What’s your favorite thing about your job?
- Jenna: The people. We’re a family environment, we all like hanging out with each other. It’s not of those types of environments where we come in everyday, like dreading working with the person on the side of you. We like to hang out a lot after work. This Friday actually the company as a whole we’re all going out to Dave & Buster. It’s not even a company paid event, like we’re just going to hang with one another. And, everybody is very involved with one another; they’re all about making you the best technical: they’re trying to help you grow and help you grow into other positions. The company is constantly growing, there are new positions opening.
- Ryan: We like to promote from within, as we always tell them there are always opportunity for growth. We just let them know we need to see your initiative to working better tickets, better ticket notes, your customer satisfaction is way up, you’re always wanting to train harder, and you’re always eager to learn more.That’s why we always push these guys to take their certification exams and actually there are two certification to get out of the apprenticeship program. But once you get out of the apprenticeship program with a total of two certifications, we still want you to keep going, to keep building, as that builds you up as a person, but also helps us as a company as a whole.
Why does apprenticeship makes sense for your company?
- Jenna: We like to be able to take in students right from college; a lot of times students that are looking for jobs, they end up looking for places that end up being out of reach (as it requires 5 years experience, you require this many certifications), and we want you to get that experience. By taking them right from college, we get to build on, and we want them to stay here, so we can invest in them, and we help them grow, and become those technicians that they want to be or those engineers they want to be. So, the apprenticeship program was the best us because we get to take them fresh from college and mold them and have them follow our company values and live those company values and then they grow within our company pretty quickly.
Can you describe you apprenticeship program in a nutshell?
- Ryan: it’s hard work because we were both apprentices. We started here as apprentices . I was hired here when I was still going to school and we both worked hard. We worked our way up. We got our certifications and continued to learn and continued to show initiative. So technology is constantly changing so it’s kind of hard to gauge what you want to do so. That’s why we keep every above in mind. Here you start off with help desk. That’s level one and the you kind of start working with everybody. And then you start working with everybody in the company because everybody helps everybody. No one is never not available to help something else. So that way sometimes they’ll sit with the engineers and see what they do all day. And then when they start they’ll sit with the network operations center today. And so on and so forth. That way they have an idea of what they might want to do so we’re constantly pushing them to be the best they can be not only with customer service but also kind of working hre with everybody.
What impact has our apprenticeship program had on your company and does that help you attract a different kind of worker?
- Jenner: I think it has had a great impact on our company. We’ve been able to–everybody apprentice we’ve brought in here has stayed working here. Everybody who comes in here loves it. They love our structured process for the trainings. They like that they know where they’re going to be at the end. They know what their options are. They know where they’re going to be. It’s attracting a lot of students, which is kind of what we’re going for. So it’s not really a different kind of worker. We’re getting what we expect from it. We’re getting a lot of students that are directly out of college or they just went through the Year Up program or something along those lines. Or they’ve been even gotten a certification themselves and how haven’t even gone to school. It’s bringing in anybody who’s got some type of technical side job or love without actually going to school for it.