ROB CLARKE - Premier Field Engineer
My first experience working for Microsoft began in 2005 as a technical intern, forming my 12 month year in industry for my degree; studying Internet Technology. During this time I worked as a Systems Engineer for MSN, helping administer the health and maintenance of the hundreds of servers that host the MSN websites across EMEA.
What strikes you quickly inside this company is the level of responsibility and near limitless opportunities for those who are willing to push themselves beyond their comfort zones and grow as an individual. Within weeks of starting my placement I was trusted with the same responsibility of other seasoned engineers in the team, with on-going opportunities to take on more and more challenging projects as the year progressed and I matured in the role. Working alongside technical experts in a real world environment provides a real sense of purpose where your contributions have a direct impact on the team and sometimes wider community both inside and outside of the business.
As a self-confessed petrol-head I was also available to spend some of my time writing articles for MSN cars alongside my day-to-day role, enabling me to feed my passion and engage with others in very different parts of the business. I don’t know of another company that provides such open accessibility to every different possible department, no matter where they are in the world; enabling you to build very strong relationships across multiple parts of the business. The only limits here are the ones you impose on yourself.
After finishing my placement and returning to university to finish my degree I knew Microsoft was the place for me and immediately applied for the graduate MACH scheme in the hopes I could return as a post-graduate. Following a challenging interview selection process I was lucky enough to secure a place back at Microsoft in 2007 as a technical MACH graduate; this time working from the UK HQ in Reading. Once again Microsoft proved themselves as a truly inclusive global community, providing immersive MACH training with other graduates from all across the world alongside my day-to-day role as a Support Engineer. During my three years in this team I dealt with very low level technical escalations from our enterprise customers with real world problems that required expert troubleshooting, growing my technical skillset to new levels.
After advancing to a Senior Support Engineer I decided to push myself into new territory and move into a more proactive role as a Premier Field Engineer; working face-to-face with customers both in the UK and across Europe. This continues to prove a very challenging yet equally rewarding role, where you are able to see how your contributions directly impact businesses across the globe. For me, this is what it’s all about.
Like anything in life, you get out what you put in. For those with a genuine curiousity about people and technology, and who are prepared to push themselves and grow beyond what they previously imagined possible; maybe just maybe this is the place for you.