SYSCOMで活躍する社員達

How Hector Melo’s desire to keep growing sets the tone for SYSCOM

Role:

Assistant Manager

Division:

V2 Financial & Retailers

Location:

NY

Expertise:

Technical Proficiency in Storage Systems, Virtualization and Cloud Computing, Systems architecture, Database management

Experience:

7 years at SYSCOM

Hobbies:

Photography, Travel, Outdoor activities, DIY projects

Role

Assistant Manager

Division:

V2 Financial & Retailers

Location:

NY

Expertise:

Technical Proficiency in Storage Systems, Virtualization and Cloud Computing, Systems architecture, Database management

Experience:

7 years at SYSCOM

Hobbies:

Photography, Travel, Outdoor activities, DIY projects

Hector Melo had a different introduction to the IT profession than most. He started back in 1992 in the Dominican Republic with the International Air Transport Association (IATA), working on the team that handled transactions between travel agencies and airlines. “Way before the emergence of the Electronic Flight Tickets and the Internet, our main function was to be a settlement bank between Travel Agencies and Airlines,” says Melo. It wasn’t the straightforward path, but “there, I could get proficient in mainframe operation, EDI technologies, software development, and more.”

That’s been a recurring theme in Hector’s career: using any opportunity as a chance to learn more about something. “I’ve had the opportunity to work in various roles within the IT field, each providing me with unique experiences and opportunities for growth: IT consulting for hospitality, administration for manufacturing companies, freelancing, and more.”

When he started out, learning new skills required taking a job in a related field, or spending hours looking information up. But, according to Hector, “Nowadays, information and knowledge is at a distance of a click. Information comes to you, unlike the 90’s where you needed to spend hours poking in books and magazines to learn about a specific topic.”

While he certainly has come to enjoy the benefits of increased access to information personally, he sees it as more than that. “You don’t need to specialize in something for 1-2 years, now you can start learning tech while working on something else.” It isn’t just about career development—it’s about providing a better service to customers. “When the time comes to use it to service a customer, you already have that knowledge.”

His desire to keep learning—whatever and however he can, on the job or otherwise—has made him a more well-rounded person, of course, but it’s also made him better at his job. Things he’s picked up on the job previously allow him to jump right into solving new clients’ problems right away. “If you’re more prepared to take care of a customer’s tech complaints, you can solve problems more quickly, instead of spending time figuring out how the thing works. You can be more prepared in advance.”

“It’s a win-win for both sides,” says Hector. “We win their trust, and they get a service provider that can handle their problems quickly.”

You don’t stop learning at SYSCOM. You always learn something new.

Hector Melo

Assistant Manager

He was introduced to a Japanese methodology of improvement in his first job in the United States, the Kaizen Philosophy for Continuous Improvement, and it really resonated with him. “Usually, it’s used in manufacturing and production environments,” he says. “You create an environment where processes are continuously improving. You remove redundant processes, make the process quicker, more reliable, and more efficient. You find a flaw and you fix it, and you make the process better.”

The idea behind the Kaizen Philosophy is one Hector shares. Every improvement made pays off in the long run. “2-3 hours shaved off one step of a process is 2-3 hours saved every time that process runs,” he says. And his time-saving, always-learning efforts have paid off with professional recognition, too: in 1999, he was awarded for achieving the first Y2K-compliant certification for an IATA office in Latin America.

He’s so good at getting stuff done better and faster, his office was the first one ready for the Y2K crisis in his entire region.

So how has that drive to grow, learn, and get better continued on at SYSCOM? “Working at Syscom has been an incredibly rewarding experience,” he says. “You have freedom to get involved in different things. If you want to add to your skillset, you can train and work at the same time.”

“And that’s a very positive thing for the workplace.”

What’s more, at SYSCOM, he’s found a circle of like-minded people who are more than willing to share their expertise—and in turn, work and learn with him. “This is a day to day thing at SYSCOM. When it comes to problem solutions or process improvement for a customer, the whole team becomes one big brainstorm to find the best and most suitable solution.”

As much as he’s always set out to learn, there’s still something he might know. But that’s not an issue. “It helps to have colleagues from other teams with different expertise. I can use it to better serve our customers. I might not be familiar with the problem, but we combine skill sets to come up with the best solution.” Hector sees himself as one piece in a larger picture. “You become a big pool of skill sets at SYSCOM, enabling better service. Everyone benefits—and the final product, serving our customer, improves.”

This exposure to new fields, other partners, and exciting projects has kept him expertly-informed on a variety of cutting-edge topics over his 30+ year career.

  • On AI: “AI improves the way businesses can make predictions, based on current data and behavior of the data. But AI cannot dominate the way you think. It’s just a tool to make your work more efficient.”
  • On network security: “Customers aren’t always aware of the size of their risk. Even in a closed environment with no external access, there still may be malicious actors inside. Zero Trust is a good approach, but starting from Least Privilege is vital. You have to protect from the inside out. First, protect from your users. Then, protect yourself from the outside world.”

But more than anything, he stresses that his best client service tool is the relationships he builds with his customers. “I always try to not overcomplicate things. This is a relationship that’s friendly and built on trust. Most of the time, we can solve problems just over a phone call.”

With more than three decades in the game and a wealth of experience across multiple industries, it’s easy to see why Hector is so easy to trust. He knows what he’s doing. But even with thirty years as an IT professional, Hector is still looking to the future.

“The world is open to you in a way it wasn’t 20 to 30 years ago,” he says. “You don’t stop learning at SYSCOM GS. You always learn something new.”

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