July 27th, 2018

The more complex the challenge, the more interesting it gets

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Sentia is at the front line of cloud computing. Although the company has been around since 1999, its growth has accelerated since 2015. Following the acquisition of some carefully chosen partners, the company can deliver cloud services and application management at the highest level. For Olaf van der Hoorn, Chief Operations Officer at Sentia since 2017, every day is an exciting journey.

“During twenty years at our own company, we developed from graphic designers to a provider of high-volume hosting solutions. From brochures to the online “Wuppie” campaign! It was not surprising that we joined Sentia. They are renowned in the market as a reliable supplier of advanced, customized hosting and cloud solutions. Our arrival was a positive, complementary contribution to the portfolio. When I first arrived at Sentia, I simply began walking around and got into everything. After a few months I was officially allowed to do that as COO - a lightning-fast career trajectory. Olaf van der Hoorn Sentia

Green en Orange
Continuity is a key concept for us – we ensure that systems and applications continue to work. From full outsourcing, where we manage complete infrastructures, including office or desktop environments, to managed application continuity, where we are responsible for an application, from testing and acceptance to production. Consider a bank’s loan requests or an auction house’s transactions. All of that increasingly happens in the cloud, I see companies becoming less fearful of this trend. At Sentia, we offer three types: our own public cloud with its own tooling, AWS, and Azure. We work in teams, with Red being the more 'traditional' ICT outsourcing. At Yellow we strive for 'product leadership' and at Blue we work towards operational excellence for over 1,000 customers. The recently added Green and Orange teams are very focused on the front line of the cloud and DevOps. The quick rate of development at large vendors is difficult to keep up with, so the Orange team keeps a particularly close eye on this, translating these developments into optimal solutions for our customers.

Going through the transitions together
I have experienced the move from physical to virtual machines up close and nowadays it’s hard to tell the difference. With everything from software-as-a-service to serverless computing, or infrastructure as code, the physical location of systems doesn’t matter anymore. Everything sits in one big data lake - the application, the database, and the storage. We bring all of this together with CICD, (continuous integration, continuous deployment) and I see that this requires more and more expertise. The day when our Continuity Engineer knew about all of the systems out there has passed. The number of options and the differences between the various providers is simply too high. We now have inhouse specialists who can handle development and operations on the various cloud platforms in an agile way. They join us and the customer as we undergo the transitions. People who like to sink their teeth into technology, laws and regulations, who are eager to learn from the increasing complexity, and the associated security issues - we can always use more of them.


Innovation and education
Sentia in its current form has really only sprung, but it has great ambitions. We want to become the European leader in application continuity. It took some time to merge the different 'islands' together, but by organizing teams based on the customer portfolio, we succeeded. The arrival of a new Managing Director has created more structure. More importantly, this has happened without affecting the start-up culture that still prevails, with hackathons set up by employees and of course the essential parties. Innovation and education go hand-in-hand here. For me, the more complex the environment, the more interesting it is. I enjoy solving problems. The same applies to the people we are looking for. Those who get energy from a challenge, no matter how complicated, will feel right at home here.

Would you like to know more about the groundbreaking projects at Sentia? Visit the website, call our recruiter Jorn, or come and have lunch with us! Jorn Jansen jobs@sentia.com
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