Jason DeLano talks about his role as a solutions architect

Jason DeLano is a successful solutions architect with over twenty-two years of related industry experience.

After earning a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science from Siena College in 1998, DeLano worked in various leadership roles for prominent organizations including Oracle Consulting and Aderas Inc. With strong communication skills and solid business experience, DeLano works alongside the clients to provide comprehensive strategies while implementing functional solutions. Currently based in Bethesda, Maryland, he enjoys the professional challenges that come with his position.

When he’s not working, he typically volunteers in his local community or spends time with his wife and three children.

1. What are you currently doing with your company?

My current role is to establish technical solutions for our clients, whether they are federal or commercial. So, you may be responding to a request for proposal from the federal government or responding to a specific business need. Many of our customers are looking to transition to serverless solutions from cloud providers like AWS. We work diligently to provide the best option for that particular business while considering the most cost-effective method.

2. What inspired you to enter this industry and this position?

When I was a kid, I really liked playing video games. And, when it was time for university, I wanted to go study to become a programmer. So, I got to college and after taking a look at all of programming, I found myself more motivated and interested in understanding the business side rather than core development and coding. I was drawn to that kind of consulting role, where you’re advising, mixing the right technology, etc. However, I also enjoyed doing the hands-on work of developing and reading code, so I decided on a Computer Science major with a minor in Business.

I got out of school and majored in database development, which is more of the back-end department of reading a database, manipulating the data, whether it’s going in or going out, to make sure that people access to the right data at the right time. weather. From then on, you start to become a more specialized programmer and you grow in the role the more exposed you are to technology integration. Most would call it full stack development and after that he would become a solution architect where he can put all these pieces together to design the solution. I always liked being creative when it came to problem solving and enjoyed facing different challenges every day.

3. What are the keys to being productive that you can share?

Productivity is an interesting challenge. As you search for ways to solve different problems, you start to investigate, right? How people have solved a similar problem in the past and how you find the right approach with new technology or more efficiently. From a productivity standpoint, I like to start by listing the tasks I want to get done today. In my mind as a programmer, I follow the Agile Scrum approach. That’s where I divide my day into what’s in my backlog, what’s in progress, what’s in testing, and then what I’ve done. That way, I can break my day down into smaller components, what I can accomplish in one day, what I need to put in my backlog, and what I need to tackle for another day. That way I can stay focused on the task, no matter how big or small the task is.

4. Can you share a long-term goal with us?

I think the career goal, when I started out after college, was to start my own company, which I did in 2004. And I did it again in 2019 with a slightly more unique approach. It’s hard to say when you’re going into a general IT development company or starting a consulting company when there are already thousands out there. I wanted to build a company that gives me satisfaction when I’m working for a specific client or towards a solution that I feel is rewarding for me. Especially when I can look back and see how it was completed. Furthermore, when you are able to interact with clients when they choose you as a consultant, you are choosing them as a partner to work with to achieve a common goal which is to fulfill the client’s mission.

5. How do you measure success?

Varies by project. I started my career with project success driven by consulting contract requirements. My requirements may have been, for example, with CMS, they needed to complete four and a half million transactions within an eight hour window. He had a predefined goal to mark success. Deviating a lot from performance metrics and targets, I try to come in with an understanding of what the targets are and what would be considered accomplished by the client themselves. The most important thing for me is not only to achieve what they wanted from me, but to be proud of what I have done knowing that I exhausted my options to improve something in the allotted time or budget. To me, a successful customer is a repeat customer, so I try to make sure that everything I do helps them achieve business success or return on investment.

6. What would you say is the most valuable lesson you have learned throughout your career?

A big part of this is not taking on more tasks than you can handle and leaving yourself completely overwhelmed. Where you can’t figure out where to start and see what is constantly being added to your order book. When I was younger, I took on a lot of things that weren’t exactly in my wheelhouse. I was still able to achieve them, just not to the quality I wanted. It’s a combination of staying in your own lane, the lanes around you, and sticking with what makes you feel good about the quality of your work, as well as contributing to the team.

7. What advice would you give to other people who aspire to become solution architects or work in the field of digital media?

The best advice is to constantly read and understand what’s new, what’s up, what companies you respect are doing, and what trends they’re setting. In the post-Covid world, many of the conferences one would normally attend to have their speaker presentations online and for free, so you have much easier access to the material and lessons learned that are presented at the conferences. Before you couldn’t have attended all of them, now you can watch them at your leisure. Many people like to share stories about the problems they encountered and how they were able to overcome them with the technology at their fingertips. The information is out there, along with the story. You can make use of it and you can almost plan what kind of services you may or may not need in the future.

8. How do you maintain a strong work-life balance?

It is crucial to set personal and professional boundaries. Being a husband and father is very important to me and understanding at what times of the day I must fulfill each of these roles. Obviously there are times in the IT industry when you are needed outside of core business hours as it is rarely a standard eight or nine to five job. Understanding how to balance the two is challenging. Most of the people around the world face that challenge. It’s being able to compartmentalize that day so you can put thoughts of work behind you when it’s time to go home to focus on you and your family.

9. What is the piece of technology that helps you the most in your daily routine?

I would say that I like to use a whiteboard to organize my thoughts. It’s funny because being in the IT business I still use it to draw things. I want to see a quick picture of how data will flow through a system and flow in/out between components. Even if I don’t go back to the notes, I use it more as a thought process to outline what I want to do.

Another piece that we use to largely break down our development process and flow is that Atlassian has a few products, including JIRA, which helps break down our tasks for the day and Confluence. Confluence is a collaboration tool, where we can create wikis to document processes and procedures or best practices that our team can leverage to solve their problems or not recreate the wheel every time.

10. What is a piece of advice that you have never forgotten?

Have courage, be kind. It’s a motto I do my best to follow. In the business I’m in, it’s easy to get frustrated with customers, teammates, product support groups, and yourself, but if you’re nice, when it’s not always easy, it’s so much better when everyone treats each other fairly. mutual respect.

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