Massi Traspadini

Meet Massi, who works in our Technology team in Italy. We had a chat with him to understand the work he does with our corporate customers across the globe, and what does ‘low level technical design mean’.

What do you and your team do on a day basis?

I work in the “Low level technical design” team, based in Italy, whose members face customer’s requests daily, involving IT design, covering competences in systems, storage, databases, security, network. Everyone has their own experience, of which contribute and provide contents that describe the projects.

Our day-to-day activities include the support given to the IT pre-sales team for the definition of the high-level design in response to the requirements expressed by the customer.

If the customer signs a contract, then, we design, in detail, the solution, also writing the low-level design document.

Why did you choose to change roles from system admin to IT solution architect?

Two years ago, I chose to change my job role from system administrator to IT solution architect.

Taking advantage of past experience, my commitment became focused on solutions, including the design of the upper layers in the computer stack: Windows and Linux architectures, infrastructure managed software services such as Active Directory, Exchange, Veeam Backup & Replication, and National Incident Management System monitoring.

I also design the backup and monitoring service architecture needed by customer's security and service-level agreement requirements.

Then, I collect all these calculations, evaluations, choices, suggestions in a document intended for the delivery team and sometimes for the customer.

To make the drafting of the document easier and to optimize the solution, I write and update templates that describe repeatable solutions. So, the design becomes smart and agile.

Recently, I have given my willingness to support the training team, helping the handling of internal training paths for colleagues.

How have BT supported your career to date?

I have been working as an employee in BT for six years now and I have gained experience, gathered new knowledge, and discovered the wealth in the daily relationships with colleagues who perform with skills that are very different from mine.

As soon as I arrived, I did my best for months looking for the space to show my potential, suggesting initiatives, showing my personal availability even in critical situations, until my line-manager chose to trust me with challenging projects, roles faced for the first time, responsibility towards customers, and coordination of relationships between colleagues and suppliers.

The outcome of this effort has been several "brilliant" evaluations, to which I reacted with different feelings: satisfaction for the quantity and quality of work done; confidence in my potentialities, which can emerge and become clear only in critical events; loyalty to BT, for which it has become an honor to commit myself.

Within the last year and a half, I have been able to achieve some certifications that drove me to learn new capabilities, making the most of the opportunities BT has given to me.

BT solutions for IT are based on vSphere software-defined datacenter and I feel more confident in the design phase, thanks to the knowledge acquired with the certification.

Another useful certification is “Amazon Web Services Certified Solutions Architect”. I’ve never dealt with cloud services before and this certification has shown me a new side to the opportunities based on “as-a-service” business model and the tools to develop it for the public, private or hybrid cloud.

The effort in studying has been huge, but without impacting my daily work, I realize and I’m conscious of the confidence BT gives to me.

What’s been your favourite project to work on so far and why?

In 2016, my line manager asked me to lead a wide project for the migration of current monitoring systems, which were covering the environments of the most important customers in BT Italy.

At that moment, I did not know the new monitoring system, its features and potentialities and I’d never faced a similar challenging effort.

I began to involve a great number of colleagues, belonging to various teams and competencies, to optimize the integration of monitoring with management systems.

While consolidating monitoring systems from a technical point of view, I decided an objective of the project should have been the teaching of the new systems functionalities dedicated to the operations teams, according to their competence (systems, databases, network, security, helpdesk), and I then became a trainer.

In fact, I could have never migrated the monitoring service of all customers by myself.

Moreover, I wrote down any kind of documentation to be sure everyone could be autonomous in the usage of the new system.

This project lasted two years and made me conscious about IT from a holistic point of view, in which technical knowledges are spread across different competences in various teams, relying on each other, that together provide services that satisfy customers only if remain within known, measured and monitored service-level agreements. 

What impact does your work have on the business and/or customers?

My job has a pivotal role in the business, even if not so obvious, or even hidden.

My support for the pre-sales team can drive collaboration with the customer to collect the infrastructure, service and application requirements, which the solution must then satisfy.

The subsequent analysis allows the high-level design to explore the necessary details to be credible, implementable, and convincing.

My main task begins when the customer signs the contract. I mean the design of the detailed solution, whose fundamental purpose is to connect the numbers that quantify the expected costs and revenues with the technical components that create and provide services for the customer.

In fact, the low-level technical design document gives life to the high level one, concretely instantiates the opex and capex costs, but builds the physical components that will generate the revenue.

My detailed technical choices, within technical constraints and cost limits, create the service that meets customer's requirements.

Furthermore, the same low-level design document is the guide that the delivery team uses for installations, configurations, deployments, developments that finally end the project, making it fully operational.

Therefore, all these aspects of my work are driven by competence, precision, and punctuality to get the customer’s best satisfaction.

How is BT driving innovation?

I’d choose two examples: security and cloud.

“Security is now at the top of the boardroom and government agenda”, as Kevin Brown, BT’s Managing Director of Security has said.

The recently launched Eagle-i is innovative because of its proactive approach, using advanced artificial intelligence to improve threats knowledge.

Moreover, it can be integrated with the technologies of existing security ecosystems, avoiding huge changes and costs to companies.

BT is able to build public cloud solutions by valuing its advantages. In fact, BT applies the utility pricing, so the end user pays only for the resources it consumes. Finally, customers can rely on BT’s core competency on cloud with confidence and spend less and less time managing infrastructure and more time focusing on its own core business.

This competence became a real consultancy and professional service with Cloud Practice, to drive for customers to a cloud transformation.

BT has also identified public loud drawbacks like regulatory issues, for example, Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard and Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, and data privacy issues, deploying customer requirements on private cloud infrastructures, but offers also the management overlay for hybrid cloud and solutions that combine public and private ones.

I’m feeling part of this wide and huge challenge, because in BT I’m able to be a member of global teams who share deep competence and help to achieve any goals. But I can also play a leading role, applying my technical experience and the knowledge of cloud certifications.

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