Techie Tuesday: A Conversation with Jes Banks

Posted by Jes Banks, Sr. Project Manager, - Oct 6, 2020

Techie Tuesday highlights the depth of technical talent we have here at Onix. Each member of our team brings their own set of unique talents and skills to our culture and clients.

In this series, we share the personal side of our technical team and allow them to give you their professional insights for working in this industry.

This time we are excited to introduce Jes Banks, Sr. Project Manager. As a PM, she keeps technical projects on time and on budget for customers.

What is Your Role at Onix?

I work as a liaison between the Onix Cloud Professional Services team and our customers, ensuring that deadlines, deliverables, budgets and client expectations are met while freeing our technical team to concentrate on the tasks at hand.

Our goal is to increase our Customer Satisfaction by employing best practices and open communication by providing a point person to triage customer requests more efficiently.

What Makes You Excited to Come to Work Each Day?

While I love what I do, I enjoy the atmosphere most. We work hard and we like to have fun at the same time. The culture at Onix is what keeps me excited to come to work day after day.

Tell Us About Your Favorite Project.

I have to say it has been working on multiple migrations to Google Cloud Platform (GCP) with the team at an organization that supports small, community hospitals. This organization is incredibly engaging. 

We started with one small proof of concept (POC) project, which led to several projects, including a series of GCP migrations and data projects. Customers like this are part of what makes this job great. We get to help smaller community hospitals reap the benefits of cloud computing, by providing the plans and the technical expertise needed to support their IT teams. Not only do I feel good about the work we've done but we have a great time while doing it!

What Do You Like to Do Outside of Work?

I'm either on the motorcycle, on the water or I'm rescuing whatever animal has decided to camp out on my porch this week. We joke that there must be an ad on 'FaceBark' or 'MeowSpace' or something because sick and lost animals just show up. Some stay for hours, others for months, and some for a lifetime.

Our brood ranges in age from 18 years to 4 months and currently includes 2 pit bulls and 6 cats. There is a reason we call our house "the Banksuary" (as in Sanctuary).

Share Something You Wish People in the Industry Knew.

Project Management is ESSENTIAL for any project to run smoothly. That's not to say that our technical team can't manage the tasks on their own, but that their skills are better suited to other tasks. Assigning a PM allows them to focus on the heads-down tasks, while we manage the comms, the budget and the project flow.

Project Management is ESSENTIAL for any project to run smoothly, says Jes Banks. @OnixNetworking

Any Advice for Someone Looking to Do What You Do?

Develop thick skin and organizational skills quickly. First, because the customer will be looking at you the entire time and will put you on blast if the project is delayed or over-budget or [...insert reason here ;-)]. 

Second, because sometimes, you will need to be able to stand up and push your team in order to meet a time frame or budget, or you may need to step up and let the customer know when the thing they want to do is not possible...yet. It's a balancing act. Finally, know that while you're putting your heart and soul into your work, it's BUSINESS, not personal. PERIOD.

Anything Else You'd Like to Share with Our Readers?

As a PM, you straddle the lines between the Sales team, who have made promises to the customer; the delivery team, who have to somehow make those promises a reality; AND the customers themselves. Remember to give yourself some grace. No one is perfect, and, if it ever happens, admitting when you've blundered is far better than trying to cover it up. It always comes out. Owning it up front is the only play. Everything else is just a mess that hasn't come to light... yet.

Missed a Techie Tuesday post? Get caught up and learn all about your favorite Onix technical team members.

Techie Tuesday: A Conversation with Scott Mabe

Techie Tuesday: A Conversation with Scott Cruze

Techie Tuesday: A Conversation with Michael Sliwka

Techie Tuesday: A Conversation with Dustin Keib

Techie Tuesday: A Conversation with Hunter Lynne

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Meet the Author

Jes Banks, Sr. Project Manager

Jes Banks, Sr. Project Manager

Jes started her career in the survey research industry, moved to translation and localization and now works as a project manager in cloud computing. She has more than 20 years of project management experience, 35 years of overall computing experience and 10 years of experience with Google products. As a lover of dogs and cats, she spends her spare time rescuing and caring for stray animals.

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