Originally from Cork but now settled in Dublin, ‘Cloud Solution Specialist’ Rachel takes us through her career journey to date and how she ended up in the Tech industry.
I started selling from the age of 9, standing at the top of the road selling my old toys to anyone I could persuade to stop by. Much to my neighbours delight I officially joined the workforce at 15 years old predominantly in retails roles, which supported me all through my school and college years. I always think that grafting from a young age gave me a real understanding of hard work and appreciation for where I am today.
I’m sure I’m not unique in the fact that I had no idea what career path to take when I was in school. I laugh when I think back now, but I just remember thinking that China was ‘taking over the world’ in many senses and so I decided to study Arts in University College Cork (UCC) specialising in Economics and Chinese. It was a fantastic course where I spent a year studying in Shanghai University and developed a good fluency in Mandarin. (Although I’ve been out of practise for quite a while now so I’m not sure how my current skills would hold up).
It was while living in Shanghai that I had my first real pull towards the tech industry. As China is a communist country, I remember Skype and Facebook etc. were all banned at the time, so in order to stay in contact with friends and family’s back home we had to find ‘creative’ tech means to reach out. It really amazed me at the time that technology could always seem to find a way, regardless of the ask or where I was based.
In 2013, excited to be back amidst the Irish culture after my year abroad, the IT sector in Cork was really starting to flourish and so I joined the VMware Graduate Programme. With my background in Economics it felt like a natural progression to fall into a sales role.
What I loved most about VMware was that they were consuming the technology they were providing customers; VMware is VMware’s largest consumer. This meant that I always had an understanding of the VMware portfolio from the both the vendor and consumer side of things which still stands to me now.
Having cutting edge technology available at my fingertips made my work life so much easier and saved me so much time in my day-to-day role. For example, as employees we would all have been given a Workspace One account which meant that every app we used in our working day (be it Microsoft Word, Salesforce, Outlook, VMware in house apps etc) could all be accessed by signing in just once on any given device.
To be honest that level of flexibility really helped my scatty time management as I remember landing at my desk one morning only to realise, I had forgotten to bring my laptop with me. Thankfully I could just find another device, login and have access to everything I needed (after IT approval of course😉). I see people today tied to their desk with a long list of passwords to remember and I can’t imagine working like that – maybe technology has spoiled me😊.
I stayed with VMware for 5 years starting as Graduate moving from Partner Account Manager to Customer Account Manager and finally onto Inside Sales Team Lead. I really enjoyed working for VMware and my experience there still plays such a pivotal role in my current role today.
I joined Asystec in February 2018 finally making the move from Cork to the capital, Dublin. A typical day at Asystec doesn’t really exist (as is the case with most sales roles). While I have a desk in our Dublin offices, I am predominantly field based and could be anywhere from Cork, to Wicklow or Limerick on any given day meeting customers, chatting to vendors all while completing my sales admin & reporting. Once I have a phone and a laptop, I can do my job, so 99% of the time my desk is my car.
I’m coming up on my 2-year work anniversary and thankfully still love what I do, working for Asystec. I recently purchased a place in Dublin too so have officially made it my home (for now anyway, after all Cork is only down the road 😉.)