19.04.2016

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The Cisilion global diaries are back in one of our all-time favourite cities (and offices) – New York! Our Chief Strategy Officer Rob Quickenden travelled to the US for one of our customers and managed to enjoy the breath-taking views of the financial district during his stay. Read about Rob’s trip and how he managed his workload across different offices and time zones.

 “Where are you?

New York City – in the World Financial District.

Why are you there?

I’m here with a colleague and some of the US team – working with one of our customers (Willis Towers Watson) on their Skype for Business Conferencing Project – this will see us review the call and capacity of the environment in readiness for the Towers Watson users coming across…. Towers Watson run nearly 20,000 conferencing a month!! The wider goal is to also phase out their Cisco Call Manager estate and move them all to Skype for Business. This will be circa 40,000 users globally.

Duration of trip?

5 days (with travel) – but likely to be back in May for a few days.

What collaboration tools are you using? Or any other tools? 

During this trip, mainly Skype for Business – this is used globally by Willis and soon Towers Watson.

How’s the interaction with the UK offices while in NYC?

Good. We are all online and use presence within Skype for Business to know which and when our colleagues in the UK (and in other parts of the US are online and available).  We have a couple of video conferences each day to check in….and test some of the changes around capacity that the technical team are working on.

How have the solutions Cisilion provide helped you with working abroad?

The project is all about extending and widening the Skype for Business use – we have been enabling Skype for Business Enterprise Voice in the UK, but this week is all about doing capacity planning and testing for wider expansion. Skype for Business is the pivotal tool that we are using for collaboration and communication… being “federated” with Willis means we work and collaborate with them like we are “one company”.

Any other work trips coming up?

Yes… I was in Phoenix last week for a Riverbed Partner Conference (that was hot!!) and I’m back in NY again in May to oversee the user adoption programme with Willis. Oh…I am also in Toronto in July for the Microsoft Annual Partner Conference. Love Toronto… but love New York more!

Describe NY in a sentence – how is it, what do you like/dislike about it.

I love it here. First time I have worked here but have been a tourist many times. It’s actually really exciting working at the heart of the US financial district and having the Freedom tower as the view from my hotel and my office every morning! One thing I don’t like. It takes me away from my wife and 9 month old baby boy – Daily Skype Calls help though!

If you had 2 free days in NYC what would you do there? 

I would do a few things… Have dinner on a boat and soak in the views of the City SkyLine at night looking across to New Jersey, see if I can find the best Steak House in NY – there are lots of them…that will take a few days!

If you could go to NY with anyone, who would you go with? Why?

My best mate Michelle – she is the world’s most craziest shopper and would literally bankrupt me (and her)! My wife would do well out of all the gifts I’d get made to buy!

How long have you been with Cisilion? Why do you love your job?   

4 Years so far… I love the variety, the people and the exciting projects we get involved in, and more than anything seeing the end of a technology project that has driven transformation in some way –  be it a collaboration project, a move to cloud services or just working with and connecting people globally. We work really closely with our vendors too to ensure we provide the best solutions for our customers with the right support!”