A day in the life of: Dean Woodcroft, solutions architect, Stone Group

Stone's Dean Woodcroft describes a typical day at work
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My day starts around 7am, sometimes earlier, with breakfast, coffee and a quick catch up on emails before I take a look at my schedule for the day. It can include anything from customer site visits to working on proposals at home or in the office. Although the majority of my time is spent working at home or travelling to see customers, I am in the office once a week.

The solutions architect role is a title that varies from organisation to organisation, although simply put, my job is to take a technical requirement or problem and translate it for all parties technical and non-technical. Then I produce a solution that illustrates how to transition from the current environment to the proposed environment, whilst working within the customer’s parameters. 

If I am off to visit a customer, I will be out of the house early and on the road – last week I went to Surrey, Yorkshire and Wales – visiting customers within councils, health, education and emergency services. Once on site I will meet up with the account manager from Stone and we will talk to the customer about their wish list. I can then go back to the office to develop the proposal and kit list.

Each customer has very different needs and parameters. This is a part of the role I enjoy the most, there is no room for complacency or producing carbon copy solutions across customers. 

My evenings during the week are usually dedicated to on-going study. I am working on a variety of certifications at the moment, which will be added to those already under my belt. My job demands that I am on top of the latest technological deployments and that I know how to use them to their best advantage – if you can be confident that one piece of software will do the job of 10, why deploy 10? 

My home lab is equipped with networking and server equipment that I can use to test solutions, and work out new ways of utilising the technology. 

After a busy week, weekends are definitely about relaxing and spending time with friends, watching F1 and going to the gym.

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