In September 2021 Jurgen started at Xebia. We first got to meet Jurgen in the fall of 2020, when he took on an internship with us during the third year of his ICT Bachelor. After successfully implementing a new back-up solution on AWS we had to wave him goodbye as he went on to complete his graduation journey at another organization. Needless to say, we were delighted when we got his phone call in the summer of 2021. Now freshly graduated, Jurgen wanted to pick up where he left off.
How did you get started with cloud?
“During my bachelor's I was given the opportunity to get more hands-on experience in a segment of my choice in the form of an internship. In the earlier years of my studies we had only briefly looked at what cloud means for the industry, and mostly covered virtual machines and networking. While looking for an internship, I came in contact with various cloud companies, who were mainly focused on multi-cloud. Eventually I came across Xebia and soon learned about their focus on AWS. After the initial meetings I knew I would learn everything I needed to know about this corner of the cloud here.”
How did you experience the connection between theory and practice?
“From very early on I knew I wanted to do something with computers. During my studies I found myself mostly interested in infrastructure and solution design, so I set out to follow the right courses to further develop myself in that field. I was also curious about process automation, something that is popular at Xebia as well. During my studies I have touched upon many topics and technical terms. This helped me understand most conversations when I first started at Xebia, at least on a surface level. Soon however I realised just how much AWS knowledge and depth there was being covered here on a daily basis and that there was still a lot to learn. Luckily my team helped me a lot to find my way.
Being part of the managed services team, I got a very good impression of everything we do for our customers. The team also facilitated me in getting my AWS Practitioner certification, which on its own already did a lot for my cloud computing knowledge, besides the daily practice.
During my internship I became part of the Managed Services team. Together I got the chance to discuss a topic that I could further explore in the team. We decided on the topic of system management, and backups specifically. Being part of the managed services team, I got a very good impression of everything we do for our customers. The team also facilitated me in getting my AWS Practitioner certification, which on its own already did a lot for my cloud computing knowledge, besides the daily practice.”
Why was Xebia your first choice as an employer after you graduated?
“During my internships I confirmed for myself that I wanted to focus on AWS in my career. And Xebia really has this focus. The benefits of being a Premier AWS Consulting partner was also recognized by our customers, and during my internship I already got to work with some very cool customer names. Then I also understood that we’re pretty well-known in the AWS space.
What I also experienced is that I can grow in any role from where I am now starting. There is always someone within reach that can help when you’re stuck on a job or need some new insight. I felt this when I first landed in the team: there is a lot of knowledge. But this knowledge is also really shared a lot internally, which made it possible to carry it with me on future tasks and projects.
Prior to this internship I had no experience in an office environment. Unfortunately I started during the pandemic, so I was not often at the office. My team was still very involved with my project and development and offered help if I needed it. Joining the daily standups really made me feel part of the team and I still got to know everyone, which is why I could get started again very quickly when I came back after graduating.”
What are you currently doing at Xebia?
“I am one of the engineers on the Managed Services team. And within the team I focus on managing customer environments and support requests in general. This includes setting up customer accounts and managing their rollout. And I still get to work on my internship project by further developing our back-up solutions.
Together with my colleague Sander I’m the point of contact for incident and change management. Helping our customers from this position allows me to be involved with almost everything that we can do for our customers. So I get to see a lot of different cases and process many different kinds of questions. But I am also tagging along with new projects that involve Infrastructure as Code and further automations with AWS CDK."
What do you want to do next?
“I’m still learning a lot about all the AWS services and solutions. For example, I am currently studying for my AWS Solution Architect - Associate certification. But the nice thing is that in our team we have shared a list of topics that we personally like to explore. And when a customer comes along with a request for support on that topic, I get involved to help speed up the learning process.
Eventually I would also like to explore a more consultancy-based role, where I can advise customers on the unique solutions that would fit best with the knowledge they already have internally. As I said, in my current position I fortunately really get the chance to explore different topics and environments.”
So I would advise others to really stay on top of the developments in your field of choice. But to keep learning you have to experiment with these new technologies as well. Just start testing and building and see what fits you.
What advice can you give to others who want to choose a career in IT?
“Keep a close eye on the developments in the industry and where it is headed. You can really turn that to your advantage. IT changes a lot each year. When I started with my studies, virtual networking was not that big of a deal. Now, almost four years later, it’s become a big part of what we do. So I would advise others to really stay on top of the developments in your field of choice. But to keep learning you have to experiment with these new technologies as well. Just start testing and building and see what fits you.”
Start your journey at Xebia
Check out our careers page for our current vacancies in cloud computing. Is your ideal job not among them? Feel free to submit an open vacancy and we will happily discuss your options with us!