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From Sergeant, Challenger 2 Tank Commander, to Manager in a leading Data Center provider

From Sergeant, Challenger 2 Tank Commander, to Manager in a leading Data Center provider

17 Sep 15:00 by Simon Osborne

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Wayne's story:

In April 2010, I was in my last 10 months of 22 years of military service and I was in the transition to civvie street! After speaking with friends and family and trying to understand the employment market, I thought outside the box and wanted to avoid the usual lines of work (plumber, chippy, bricklayer, driver etc.). I had to think long term and if the tech market was the way forward, how? And who?

So I applied for a manager’s role through an agency. Unfortunately the agency asked “how much experience do you have?” In my response came the normal, “I don’t have any”, and “how do I get some?”. “Leave it with me” was the response. After 4-5 weeks of waiting, I was contacted by the HR director from Equinix UK, asking me for my first interview. ‘Success’ I thought! In June 2010, I had my interview and straight away I could tell from the manner of the interview that the culture and approach was good, it gave me a positive feeling. Two weeks later I received a call from the HR director, offering me a 6 month contract, ‘great!’

On 5th Sept 2010, I had my first day at Equinix LD4. Everyone was very helpful and managed to show me around and guide me into the work load of the site. 18 months into my Equinix career, I had the opportunity to move up the management ladder. Once I cut my managerial career teeth on the team of LD4, and working my way up with the challenges of ‘once a peer now a line manager’, it became quite clear the chances to move up the business were there.

Around October 2014, I was asked to manage the new tiger team in Paris to retrain the French operations. The success of this project enabled me to have the chance to move to the central team. In January 2015 the move was then made to operations support under the guidance of the senior vice president business operations EMEA. During the first year I was asked to guide the ops support as a team leader and ensure the EMEA operations were supported.

Being part of the Telecity integration team for the operations track has been the best time I’ve had in Equinix. It shows that teams, tracks, and individuals are able to come together for a common goal and become one.

In an interview with Computer Weekly about IT careers for Ex Forces personnel (click here), Wayne advises servicemen and women to be positive about other career avenues. "I am more than happy in my role at Equinix and highly recommend this route. Since joining the company I have been talking to friends within the MOD and suggested that [work in] datacentres is the way forward," he says.

"My final piece of advice is to think outside the box. Look outside your comfort zone because the great skills you have gained within the services are very appealing to the IT industry,"

Equinix has hired a number of technicians from military backgrounds and is keen to hear from ex-military candidates. UK managing director Russell Poole values military experience and says people with a military background are well suited to work in a datacentre.

For anyone leaving the Military looking for a rewarding second career with one of The Sunday Times "100 Best Companies to work for 2019” and if you have experience in mechanical or electrical engineering then for careers with Equinix, go to: https://jobs.forces.net/clients/equinix