Keeping businesses safe and connected is a big part of what we do at iomart.
Jason is a member of our security team. He helps our customers put in place the best solutions to protect themselves and their people.
Why are the issues of security and connectivity so important?
The way we work and access services is evolving. More people are working from home so devices, applications and data are moving outside of the traditional security perimeter. With the growing use of cloud, services become geographically dispersed and the threat surface increases, so all the different touchpoints need to be secured. Businesses need to think differently about security now because the traditional approach is broken.
The aim is to achieve what we call a Zero Trust Network Architecture that sets your security stance to a least privilege access model. This gives you greater protection against new and advanced cyber threats. It’s not just the business that needs protection though. Time needs to be spent educating end users to the dangers of malware and phishing attacks. Attackers don’t usually knock on the front door, they look for the weakest point of entry and very often that’s an unsuspecting user or a forgotten device.
The entire landscape of threats and mitigation is so complex that businesses need our help to protect their assets, give their end users a good experience, and create a security and connectivity roadmap that meets their goals.
What does your day-to-day role involve?
Every day is different, that’s why I like my job. I might have some customer meetings scheduled to run through their particular business requirements and from those discussions create a Statement of Works for services we’ll deliver for them. That same day I could be working on architecture and design documentation, or be building infrastructure devices as part of a security or SD-WAN solution.
I also spend time learning new technologies, usually by playing about with demo versions in my Lab, to get an understanding of how they work and how they might integrate with, or replace, existing solutions.
Why did you want to work for iomart?
I spent many years working for some of the biggest managed services providers in the world and you can sometimes get lost inside those organisations and feel you’re not really making a difference. I wanted to join a company with plans for growth in the areas I was interested in and I really wanted to do that in a company where you can affect outcomes if you put your time and effort into it.
I also really enjoyed the interviews I had. Strange I know!! They gave me a good feel for the type of people I would be working with and the direction they were moving in.
Why did you decide to specialise in security and connectivity?
I have worked in networking for too many years to remember. I worked my way through support and then into network management, and over the last 10 years progressed into consultancy and architecture roles. Security has always been part of the remit of designing and managing network infrastructure so it was a logical and natural progression for me.
Do you need specific skills to work in a role like yours?
You need specific vendor technical skills, which can all be learned - it just takes time and effort. Technology changes rapidly and part of the job is keeping up with it. I always try to look out for the new technologies that could influence business and gain some knowledge of them.
You have to want to learn because there’s always something new on the horizon. With the multitude of vendors offering similar products, it’s almost impossible to become an expert in them all, so I try to specialise in one or two, but I always maintain a high level view of the area I’m interested in.
Most of the time the technology being implemented by the vendors is usually following the same standards, and so the differences tend to be how that data is presented at the GUI level.
You also have to be able to listen and interpret what customers want. They usually have a vague idea. It’s my job to turn that idea into a solution that will benefit them.
Tell us about your iomart journey so far.
I joined during the Covid lockdown so I’ve yet to meet any of my team face-to-face, other than via Teams video calls. While I work from home a lot due to the nature of my job, I have missed meeting them and getting out on the road to visit customers. Overall though, it’s been an interesting time with some good projects completed and others in the pipeline.
What is the best thing about working for iomart?
Given the Covid situation I’m not sure that I’ve had the full iomart experience yet. So far though, I’ve really enjoyed the variety of work I’ve been given. I do like to be left alone to get things done, that’s important to me as I need time and space to work through designs or problems, so thanks to my team for not bothering me too much!
Everything else has been fairly seamless. My laptop and phone turned up and were setup quickly, access to HR and other backend systems appeared with no issues. It makes quite a change from some of the places I’ve worked where getting access to these systems was a job in itself.
I guess that’s one of the benefits of being at iomart. It’s more agile and quicker to move in all areas of the business.
What do you enjoy doing when you’re not at work?
My big thing is running.
I run a minimum of three times a week, usually along the coastal path where we live. I’m looking forward to meeting up with friends at events and at my local running club again.
I’ve also missed going to the pub with my wife to enjoy good food and drink. The local is a couple of minutes’ walk from our house, so when it opens I might make use of their free WiFi and relocate there for a few months!
We are always looking for talented people to join us as we continue to invest in delivering service excellence to our customers.
If you’re interested in joining iomart, take a look at the current vacancies on our careers page. If there are no suitable roles for you at the moment you can always submit your C.V. for general consideration.
We look forward to hearing from you.