Well, it's the first week of our new Community Spotlight, and we're psyched with all the responses we've had from you all!
Congratulations to Brandon Bridges, our first feature!
Brandon was seeking to change gears in his career and found the job posting. After meeting their requirements and being interviewed, he was offered the position, "I was definitely in the right place at the right time".
Brandon handles all the 'IT needs' (and more) for two organisations which are made up of four teams, at track every race weekend. He travels with the "A Team", who arrive on site first and leave last.
Brandon maintains the network past the demarcation point and provides end user support for all machines in both organisations. He is the only point of contact at the track for technology and is expected to handle whatever is needed.
Have you met anyone famous?
Aside from all the drivers that Brandon has met in their teams since 2015 and other organizations, he's had the opportunity to meet folks from other parts of the entertainment industry that visited the track - "Meeting Matt Hardy sticks out the most for me, he was a nice guy".
The Best & Worst
The best part of working for a NASCAR team is getting to see and experience so many things that I wouldn't have partaken in otherwise - California isn't somewhere I would have travelled without NASCAR. It's interesting to experience how parts of the US can be so drastically different even though we are all part of the same country.
The worst thing that's happened in my line of work has always been the unknown and unexpected problem. In a sport where a tenth of a second can make the difference between winning or losing, minimising downtime and being incredibly reactive are crucial to my position. It takes time to resolve a problem, and working independently means that you're on the hook for whatever happens. Dealing with the unknown and unexpected has bolstered my career in a hurry - something I'm very thankful for.
At what point did you become interested in the industry?
Since I can remember, my dad has worked on computers for himself and others. I took a liking to what he was doing and worked with him to develop skills needed to do the same. His interest had the most to do with me developing my own.
Any certifications or related education prior to starting out?
I did not have any certifications before entering the industry, but have picked up a few along the way. I currently hold certifications for ITIL Foundations, Ubiquiti UEWA, and Ubiquiti UBWA. I do recognize the need for many of the common certifications like Network+ and Security+, especially when first making an entrance into the IT industry. I was fortunate to participate in an internship during college that developed into my first full time IT position.
Do you have any other qualities that helped you?
Throughout my career, I have developed and refined many qualities that have helped me do my job better. Knowing how to research a problem is absolutely critical in becoming a well rounded and knowledgeable technician or administrator, and doing so effectively only comes with time and experience. Learning to be patient when a user has a problem and developing the ability to provide an understandable insight into what most people see as a complex issue are also qualities that are invaluable in what we do.
What are your career goals?
A little over a year ago, I started my own company doing IT support for local small businesses while I'm not at the shop or track. I'd like to work for myself full time one day if the stars align and it becomes a realistic possibility. As time goes on my business continues to grow, but matching the financial aspect of an established position can be a tall hurdle to clear.
What certifications or technologies are you working on?
Wireless technologies have always been a passion of mine and my interest in them continues to grow with time. I'd like to get the CWNA (Certified Wireless Network Administrator) certification in the near future.
Anything else you want to shout out or promote?
Cleveland Community College in Shelby, NC. They have a great IT program. Check them out!