September 21, 2021
This was originally published in July of 2016
In every industry, there’s always an unknown element when working with a third-party company or partner. Different companies are structured in different ways, and it may not always be as you might suspect. For example, when meeting with a Managed Services Provider, such as Mindsight, how can you ensure they translate your concerns into a real-life solution deployed in your environment? Who does the work? How does the project move from a planning stage to execution?
At Mindsight, this process is addressed by two different roles in the organization: the engineer and the solutions architect. Both roles are integral to designing and deploying technology solutions for our clients throughout Chicago, but each has defined responsibilities within that process.
Two Roles, One Goal
The solutions architect takes on a consultative role in the project. These experienced professionals are responsible for listening to the customer, understanding his/her needs, and designing a solution to the problem. At Mindsight, our solution architects are the subject matter experts.
- Deep and Expansive Understanding of Technology: To do this job effectively, the solutions architect must have an understanding of a wide range of technology areas. Our solution architects have enough experience to sit down at any table and speak competently about virtually any technology under the sun.
- Assessments: As part of our consultative approach, our solutions architects conduct a thorough on-site or remote assessment to figure out the underlying issues in the environment.
- Designing a Solution: Our solutions architects take their understanding of the client’s problems and translate that understanding into a workable plan. They must factor in any limitations in the client’s budget, environment, or team and create a sustainable solution to the client’s challenges which they include in a Statement of Work (SOW).
- Project Check-ins: At several points throughout the project, the solutions architect will check in on the progress of the engineers and the response of the client. If there are any holdups or unforeseen obstacles, the solutions architect serves as a standby resource to help the project move forward smoothly.
While the solutions architects at Mindsight serve in planning and consultative role, our engineers are the professional actually performing the project work. When the new data center is deployed, when the network is rerouted, when the applications are migrated to the cloud, that work is completed by a Mindsight engineer.
- Specialized Understanding of Technology: When a solutions architect completes their project plan, the account manager and solution architect select the best engineers for the job. Our engineers are focused specialists who have gained experience and mastery over their designated technology areas.
- Project Work: An engineer travels throughout Chicago carrying out the project plans provided by Mindsight solutions architects.
- Protecting the Client’s Environment: One technology is almost always connected in some way to another technology in the environment. Therefore, an engineer needs to remain cognizant of how their work stands to impact the rest of the client’s system.
- Communication: At Mindsight, we are committed to maintaining transparency with our clients. One of the major responsibilities of an engineer is to communicate with the assigned project manager. Through regular updates, our project manager can then convey progress, insights, and situations to the client.
Dividing and Conquering
The overall goal of Mindsight is to provide our clients the best possible answers in the most efficient way possible. We find this distribution of labor to be an effective way to manage our projects. It keeps every technical professional and account manager involved in the completion of the task from beginning to end and frees up time for our solutions architects to move on to the next project without losing sight of the prior one.
Like what you read?
Mindsight, a Chicago IT services provider, is an extension of your team. Our culture is built on transparency and trust, and our team is made up of extraordinary people – the kinds of people you would hire. We have one of the largest expert-level engineering teams delivering the full spectrum of IT services and solutions, from cloud to infrastructure, collaboration to contact center. Our highly-certified engineers and process-oriented excellence have certainly been key to our success. But what really sets us apart is our straightforward and honest approach to every conversation, whether it is for an emerging business or global enterprise. Our customers rely on our thought leadership, responsiveness, and dedication to solving their toughest technology challenges.