Faces of Pinnacle | Meet the IT Services Team | Nigel Blanks
June 18, 2018 | News
Pinnacle Team: IT Services
Role: Business Development
Territory: England South
What is your background in IT?
I’ve been working in technology since the mid-1980s – when the term ‘IT’ was only coming into existence. Since then, my career has developed alongside much of the technology you would find in a typical business IT network today. Starting off as a school-leaver flogging tellies at Currys, I was always keen to learn enough about any product to make it relevant to my customer. Moving to selling phones, laptops (huge things in those days), word processors and printers I attended training courses at Panasonic, IBM, Imperial and Canon. As my experience grew I took on jobs such as area sales manager in technology companies before specializing in servers and network maintenance contracts. Since the early 2000s my focus has been IT Networks as a whole, fitting the requirements of my customer sites to the technology available.
What is a typical week at Pinnacle like for you?
My customers get in touch with me when they are planning to make improvements to their IT Network. A portion of my week always involves phone calls, emails and on-site visits to plan projects with my customers. Pinnacle has a large Sage Software customer base and when they consider using Pinnacle for both Sage Support and Network Support, I meet them to discuss our range of IT Services. For my existing customers, there are often 6 or 7 renewal dates to keep on top of when you consider maintenance, security / backup software and the various other software programmes that we manage for our customers. Naturally my job requires me to know the market inside out and so throughout the week I’ll be researching and learning as I go, attending seminars and courses when necessary.
I also attend business events to boost Pinnacle’s profile locally.
Here I am at Kent Vision Live – 15th May - Kent Event Centre
Are there any recent developments in the IT world that you find particularly interesting?
Developments in the IT sector have made it possible for companies to pay for IT equipment in monthly instalments as opposed to purchasing it outright. This is useful for me as it gives customers another option for payment and helps them with budgeting. Such arrangements are now possible for not only Hardware but also software packages, with Office 365 being a prime example of a subscription model payment.
At Pinnacle, we partner with a leasing company to make the whole process seamless for customers. If there is still mileage in the kit at the end of the 3 /4 year lease, you have the option of buying title to the goods. Otherwise, you can hand it back.
What do you like most about working for Pinnacle?
Probably the variety of my customer base. I work with companies in many different business sectors and it is an interesting challenge to fit the right network to each business. I enjoy going to meet my customers and hearing of the various approaches they take in selling their products and providing their services. After that, I like the group of people that work with me here in Pinnacle. When there is a complex issue, I can ask our IT Support experts for advice. Likewise, if the technical guys are looking at new products for a customer, they will come to me to discuss what’s on the market. It’s a two-way street. There is a good atmosphere here at Pinnacle – effort is rewarded, and there is always a bit of fun to be had.
What do you enjoy doing outside of work?
I’m an active person and I love being outside. I would go to the gym 3 or 4 times a week and enjoy the likes of kayaking, cycling, water sports and walking the dogs. My family are important to me and we often take trips away to music festivals and the coast. Currently I’m getting work done to my house and I’m enjoying planning the project with the workmen on the job.
Work hard to play hard is my motto and I’ve certainly been living it out in these past few years.
What would you do if you won the lottery?
If I won the lottery my dream would be to run an animal sanctuary somewhere like South Africa. To care for the Elephants, Lions and Rhinos etc would be astounding. I love to see wild animals living in their natural habitat – another dream would be to swim with wild dolphins especially as I have enjoyed some diving in the past.
Unfortunately, all of this would mean I would have to leave Pinnacle - so get your orders in quick!