Here is a short Q & A with Support Technician, Darryl Purchner. Darryl joined the GEO Jobe team in February of 2022 and is based out of our office in Gulfport, MS.
Q: What is your job at GEO Jobe, and what does it entail?
A: Currently I work in the Support Department. My job entails assisting clients or prospective clients in any way that I can. Sometimes that can be as simple as putting them in touch with whoever can best assist them within the company. Other times it involves serving as a client’s point of contact with the development team as we work to resolve whatever issue they may be experiencing. If I had to sum up my job duties it would simply be “Client Advocate”. My job is whatever the client needs it to be.
Q: What has your career path at GEO Jobe looked like and what attracted you to join the team?
A: I was scouted by David Hansen. We met at a hobby store and after an interesting conversation (and a bold query about employment on my part) David decided to give me a shot and it’s been all honeymoon ever since. What attracted me was David’s description of the company, the culture, and the potential for growth alongside GEO Jobe. I assumed some exaggeration was likely but as it turns out he represented what my experience has been with a pleasant level of accuracy. It’s been six months and I am already on track to shift into the Sales Department, which was always my goal.
Q: What jobs and experiences have led you to your present position?
A: I have a diverse background that, when cobbled together, actually gives me a pretty strong foundation for IT related client support. I served an enlistment in The United States Air Force during which I was in Communications Security. Translated into English that means I was IT Support for Classified computer systems. After I completed my enlistment I worked a few years for Geek Squad which helped me to expand my support skills to include a broader range of issues and circumstances. I suppose it doesn’t hurt that I am in the process of finishing the last year or so of my GIS degree even as I type this.
Q: What particular skills or talents are most essential to be effective in your job?
A: Perspective. The single most important thing that facilitates my job is working to understand the client’s perspective. Sometimes it’s gaining a better understanding of what the client is using our products to accomplish so that we can best assist them to achieve those goals. Mostly it’s just having empathy for the stresses and deadlines that our clients are under to lend a sense of urgency to our efforts. No two clients use our products for exactly the same purpose, but regardless of whether they are working for a Department of Transportation or some billion dollar corporation they are all doing important work and they depend on us to make that work go efficiently and dependably.
Q: Any advice for recent graduates entering into the job market and aspiring to a similar role?
A: Stay motivated and lean into your work. Always continue to better yourself and make a point to learn the jobs of adjacent departments. Gaining a broad understanding of the GIS field as a whole and the other departments within your organization will only improve the grasp of your role in the larger scheme of things.
Q: What technologies and strategies do you use in your day-to-day work that are key to success?
A: Manners and proper grammar are the first steps. Dedication and being clever are most of the steps to follow. There are occasions when we have reasons to use various software to decode the logs and data that clients send us as we troubleshoot issues but for the most part, our number one tool is good communication and determination to resolve whatever crosses our desk.
Q: What would you like to learn more about or incorporate into your daily work?
A: Personally, I am learning French at the moment since some of our clients are in France. When I have achieved a conversational level in French I intend to move on to learning Dutch (since we also have clients in the Netherlands). I already speak Australian and British so I am ahead of the game on that front.
Q: On a more personal side, do you have a favorite newspaper, magazine, blog, or sources of inspiration?
A: I can’t say that I have a favorite, necessarily. I do try to keep up with new technology and science as it unfolds. We live in a time where we are so used to innovation that things that would have captivated the world for weeks or months in the past are just another headline on a Tuesday these days. I think that alone is an inspiration. We do the unthinkable so often now that it’s normal.
Q: What kind of technology do you prefer and why? (Mac or PC, iOS or Android, and other cool tech)
A: While I have grown to appreciate Apple products over time I still vastly prefer Windows and Android for their flexibility and broader access to the software. This is pretty random but I can speak from experience that 7zip is exponentially faster than Windows’ native zip extractor. Make of that what you will but I can confirm that 7zip will extract in a quarter of the time on average. Sometimes faster.
Q: What do you enjoy doing outside of the office?
A: Oh, I’m not very eventful. I do a little gardening and reading, and when the opportunity presents itself I love to travel. I recently decided to learn to play the keyboard, though. I haven’t moved much past “Twinkle-twinkle little star” but the sky’s the limit. Failure is not an option. This keyboard was not cheap.
You can connect directly with Darryl and the GEO Jobe team, via firstname.lastname@example.org.