Jabu joined AWS in September 2018 and is a Senior Solutions Architect based in Johannesburg.
HereAtAWS: Tell us about your career journey. What brought you to your current role at AWS?
Jabu: I joined AWS after having spent more than 16 years working in multiple industries spanning from Education to Manufacturing. I decided to join the AWS Public sector team to make a meaningful contribution, by providing impactful solutions that directly effects citizens.
HereAtAWS: Can you explain your role in simple terms; who your customers are, and how you help them?
Jabu: My customers are Public Sector customers, these includes all spheres on government (National, Provincial, Local), state owned entities, Non-profit organizations and Educational institutions. We help them to use technology to deliver impactful solutions to their customers and citizens in general.
HereAtAWS: What technical and/or soft skills do you need to succeed in your role?
Jabu: You need good listening skills as you have to listen to your customers, understand their needs and provide them with solutions that exceed their expectations.
HereAtAWS: Have you had to learn any specific new skills for your role?
Jabu: I have learned to grow my patience every day. You have to be very patient with customers as most are at the start of their journey towards Cloud adoption and you need to communicate new innovations in a simple to understand way. You need to educate them continuously on how they can benefit from using AWS Cloud.
HereAtAWS: How does your work with customers help to make a positive impact on society?
Jabu: Providing solutions to Public sector customers has a direct impact on the livelihood of people and society. For example, our solutions have been key in assisting governments during the COVID-19 pandemic, from providing compute to power research for vaccines, creating solutions to help plan and estimate healthcare resources, to providing social relief grants.
HereAtAWS: At work, are you involved in any activities outside of your role?
Jabu: Yes, I’m involved in initiatives such as eKasi. This initiative focuses on developing youth skills.
HereAtAWS: What’s the most exciting part of your job?
Jabu: Knowing that the solutions I provide have a direct positive impact on society.
HereAtAWS: What’s the most challenging part of your job?
Jabu: The most challenging area is also what makes AWS so exciting. AWS has over 175 services and is constantly innovating by adding services and features weekly. As a Solutions Architect you have to keep up to this pace of innovation to ensure you provide customers with up-to-date solutions.
HereAtAWS: What advice would you give people joining AWS?
Jabu: Be prepared to be blown away by the unique culture of AWS, the diversity of people and the talent across the organisation.
HereAtAWS:How would you describe workdays at AWS?
Jabu: No day is ever the same at AWS, you are constantly discovering and learning new things.
HereAtAWS: Do you have any needs or commitment that require flexibility in your role?
Jabu: Yes, I’m a parent, the flexibility in my role means that I can spend quality time with my daughters.
HereAtAWS: What do you love to do outside work?
Jabu: I love long distance running and have completed the Comrades Marathon in 2019!
HereAtAWS:Is there anything else you would like to add about your personal journey?
Jabu: My personal mission is to continue helping the public Sector customers, especially the South African government, to use technology to overcome Poverty and Inequality. And I feel like I am in the perfect place to have that impact.