3 Great Reasons to Work in System Center's Storage Management Team – Calling all Developers

I started at Microsoft in July 2007 as a program manager. My new job also required re-locating to Washington state. This is a big change for a native New Yorker but that is a story for a different time. Right now I want to share some of my experiences working at Microsoft and a call to action for developers reading this post. 

Fast Paced Environment Focused on Productivity

I am privileged to travel about 20% of the year attending interoperability plugfests, conferences and meeting with customers and partners face to face. My friends and family think I travel "all the time" so they assume I work "all the time." Thankfully Microsoft is very flexible with work hours, offers great tele-commuting options, and provides me with all the tools to be productive wherever I am. Achieving ideal work-life balance is possible but it requires owning my calendar:

  • Book meetings with a solid agenda, else give folks back that time (duh)
  • Stay active throughout the day and meet folks in person (especially if 5 minutes face to face helps avoid a meeting)
    • Remember Redmond campus is pretty large so "in person" might require taking a shuttle
  • Schedule "dead time": time to think where you can minimize interruptions
    • I block out time on Mondays in the afternoon after I meet with all my feature crews
    • In addition, I have a set time every morning to work on my to-do list for the day
  • Set aside time for exercising
    • Helps if you are consistent with that commitment (confession: I sometimes fail to do this)
  • Proactively book known travel dates in your calendar

These are common sense tips that help optimize my time and enable me to focus on the really exciting work we do day in and day out. This is important as we accelerate time to value for our customers by embracing an incredible foundation from which to grow:

"At our core, Microsoft is the productivity and platform company for the mobile-first and cloud-first world. We will reinvent productivity to empower every person and every organization on the planet to do more and achieve more." - Satya Nadella


Broad Impact Within Microsoft and Across the Industry

In the storage management space, we work across multiple teams throughout Microsoft including:

  • Operating System Group 
  • Windows Server
  • Azure
  • MSIT
  • Product Support
  • PACE
  • and other teams

Externally we meet with customers multiple times throughout the year on the phone and in person. In addition we work with several storage partners:

  • EMC
  • NetApp
  • HP
  • Dell
  • IBM
  • Hitachi/HDS,
  • Fujitsu,
  • NEC
  • Nimble Storage
  • Pure Storage
  • Tintri
  • Tegile
  • Nexsan
  • GridStore

…to name a few of our partners

Interoperability testing is very important to Microsoft. We dedicate about 6 weeks out of the year to various plugfests to ensure Microsoft products and solutions work well with the large ecosystem of storage devices. Plugfests run by the Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA) are the most important for my team. Microsoft's investment in standards based management for storage is based on the Storage Management Initiative Specification (SMI-S). SMI is the consortium of companies that works on SMI-S and SMILab hosts plugfests. Plugfest has grown in popularity with over 70 attendees from 19 companies this past May. The latest report is available on here: http://snia.org/sites/default/files/May2014SMI-LabPlugfestReport.pdf


Work on Solutions for a Cloud-First World

In System Center, storage management investments span deployment, configuration, monitoring, and remediation scenarios primarily focused on virtualized environments running Hyper-V and enhanced by services in Azure:

  • Hyper-V Storage Capacity Management
  • Virtual Machine Rapid Provisioning
  • Intent based VM Deployment using Storage
  • Application deployment with FC Storage
  • Integration with Azure Site Recovery for Disaster Recovery

As the team's scope expands, we need to grow our development team. If you're looking for a career at Microsoft, the opportunity to learn about building software for enterprises and services for the public cloud, prototype exciting new innovations, contribute to standards bodies, present to internal teams at conferences and customers publically, then we want you to join our team. We have a developer position open in Silicon Valley. Check out this great opportunity: https://careers.microsoft.com/jobdetails.aspx?ss=&pg=0&so=&rw=1&jlang=EN&pp=SS&jid=140395

Final Note

"Across Microsoft, we will obsess over reinventing productivity and platforms. We will relentlessly focus on and build great digital work and life experiences with specific focus on dual use. Our cloud OS infrastructure, device OS and first-party hardware will all build around this core focus and enable broad ecosystems. Microsoft will light up digital work and life experiences in the most personal, intelligent, open and empowering ways." - Satya Nadella

Comments (2)

  1. Ian Carbaugh says:

    Cool blog post Hector!

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