John Gross is an ITSM Implementation Specialist with over 20 years of extensive experience in IT Service Management, Professional Services, Education Services, and Support Services. He has been responsible for the entire gamut of the product lifecycle, including Pre-Sales, Design Workshops, Implementations, Training, and Ongoing Customer Support of vast customizations utilizing best practices.
What aspects do you enjoy most about your job and working at Flycast Partners?
Working with our team over such a long period of time, we develop a feeling of family and approachability. I have always found it very convenient to be able to approach anyone in the company and speak about anything. There is, of course, a chain of command when addressing issues with customers, but I feel comfortable with everyone. Having a sense of my colleagues as family has gone a long way in our day-to-day jobs.
What is the major need you see organizations requiring?
Most organizations are trying to work with something that has robust potential without overwhelming and confusing the technical staff who support it or the customers who use it. They like the idea of a system to be flexible, to bend to how they want to do things. On paper, many solutions sound simple, but just because a system can sprout legs and walk across the room does not mean we need to make it so. Our talent in design and development to accomplish complex solutions is what most companies look to achieve. A simple conversation can lead to a solution that works and is able to be supported outside of constant Professional Services. Flycast Partners represents a wide range of products and services that can meet most customer needs. Regardless of complexity, we strive to deliver any service that is placed in front of us.
If you could invent an IT solution, what would it achieve?
As a designer/developer, it would be great to push a button from our development perspective that would spit out documentation, including well-written summaries of all changes made to the system, without us having to simultaneously write technical specifications while we develop.
What is some IT advice you wish your younger self knew when you began to work in the industry?
Never be ashamed of what you do not know. Ask. We have a wealth of knowledge around us, and it is the best way to learn.
What is your favorite IT project and why?
I have been on many favorite IT projects over the years with a countless number of customers and situations. I always enjoyed working abroad where I could use my language skills, or to be in such fascinating places where my native language was already spoken, like the UK. I have met so many wonderful people over the years. Even today, I keep in contact with them, watching their families grow up in some cases. My favorite one was a class I taught for two weeks in Hong Kong. While teaching, I picked up a little Chinese and wandered the city with my students. In a bit of contrast to that, working on the long project with the Navy has enabled me to develop long-term friendships with a group of people who have become my second work-family.
What is a memorable/biggest success with an IT engagement and why?
I think the longest relationship I had with a customer was over the course of roughly 15 years. I worked from the ground up with the service desk and became a familiar fixture with the rest of the staff as if I worked there like them. This was Garland, Texas, which provided many years of service and fond memories. This long-term relationship felt like the biggest success because of what I got out it personally, not just being paid for services as a consultant.