The last year and a half has presented numerous challenges that have forced the IT channel to adapt and overcome. One challenge often overlooked has been the onboarding of new employees. Pre-COVID, new employees could expect lunches with coworkers and in-person meetings to help form the key relationships that help drive business, but the remote work shift has pushed those relationships online. In response, opportunities like the SYNNEX Comstor Discovery Representative program have risen to the occasion.
While the current Discovery Representatives were onboarded remotely, it is apparent that the lack of in-person activity has not prevented them from connecting with and learning from their coworkers. All participants are recent college graduates who bring their education and experiences into their roles and ultimately to their future careers at SYNNEX Comstor.
For the latest “Meet the Team” article, EDGE360 spoke with the program lead and the most recent class of Discovery Representatives to learn more about what they have learned, how they have adapted to the remote workplace, and what they are excited for as they look to their future in the IT channel.
Brianna Berry, Talent Acquisition Partner, SYNNEX Comstor
Time with SYNNEX Comstor: 2 Years
Brianna Berry has seen the IT channel grow and evolve more in her two years with SYNNEX Comstor than many organizations do in a decade. As a principal player in acquiring and developing talent, she knows that it takes work to onboard a new higher properly, especially remotely. “These participants [in the program] are allowed many opportunities to explore different roles within the company before deciding where they want to land,” she said. Berry referred to this as a “try before you buy” mindset.
Ultimately, Berry argues that this process helps new hires not only find a job that fits their unique skillset, but it also helps ensure that they are excited about their roles. “This program was created by Mike Van Gieson, one of our executives, who wanted to attract some of the best talents to SYNNEX Comstor,” Berry added. “The program incentivizes exploring because then candidates are more likely to find their ‘forever homes’ at SYNNEX Comstor.
Apart from the exploration aspect of the program, Berry notes that they also attract top talent by offering potential candidates full-time roles with benefits. “They can shadow and explore, much like an intern would, but they are there with us, in front of our clients, and they are treated like full-time employees,” Berry added that the role is designed to reward curiosity and encourages all interested college grads to apply.
Evan Back, Project Manager in Business Operations, SYNNEX Comstor
Time with SYNNEX Comstor: 6 Months
Evan Back joined SYNNEX Comstor following his experience in local and state government in South Carolina. With his previous roles focusing on connecting stakeholders to best share resources and succeed, Back was an ideal candidate for the SYNNEX Comstor Discovery Representatives program.
During his six months with the company, Back has internalized many lessons, but none more important than time management. “Time is the most valuable resource,” Back told us. “Learning to manage your time and utilizing it to reach your goals is how you become the best version of yourself.”
Back was pleasantly surprised to find how highly collaboration is valued in the IT channel noting that the channel benefits from this greatly. “People want to help you,” Back added. “Asking for help is the best way to learn what you can do to improve.” Back is excited to see how far the IT channel will go, and for his role in making it happen.
Daniel Garcia, Discovery Representative, SYNNEX Comstor
Time at SYNNEX Comstor: 4 Months
Starting a new job is always an interesting experience, but it is even more so in the middle of a pandemic. Daniel Garcia, however, has found success in his routine. “I quickly learned time and task management,” Garcia began. “Once you have that routine down, it is easy to then prioritize your partner relationships, and that’s really what we try to do at SYNNEX Comstor.”
The relationship between SYNNEX Comstor and the IT channel has grown over the last year and a half, something which was a welcome surprise for Garcia. “The growth that manufacturers have seen was enabled by support from the IT channel.”
Overall, Garcia compared his experience to a salsa class: “Lots of small steps, full of laughter and fun.” Most importantly though, the IT channel encourages its members to keep trying. “Growth means being willing to try, and if necessary, getting up and trying again.”
Matt Buszkiewic, Discovery Representative, SYNNEX Comstor
Time at SYNNEX Comstor: 1 Month
Matt Buszkiewic has had a packed month. Having joined SYNNEX Comstor during the ongoing remote work shift, Buszkiewic has had to adapt quickly and find new ways to embrace the new normal. “I volunteered with the Share the Magic Colorado foundation, which has helped me forge connections that Discovery Representatives normally wouldn’t have the opportunity to in other positions.”
Buszkiewic sees the importance of communication in an increasingly connected world and has sought to build out his skill set to best support the channel today and tomorrow. “Communication is key to success, but asking questions is how we achieve a more long-term growth.”
Buszkiewic concluded by remarking on the size of SYNNEX Comstor, noting “The number of brands that SYNNEX Comstor has access to and the number of people that are impacted by the work we do is a pleasant surprise.” Buszkiewic hopes to use that to his advantage and bring top-quality services to as many people in the channel as he can. “This has been the best working experience I have ever had, and I cannot wait to see how the channel develops and grows moving forward.”
Stephen Scruggs, Discovery Representative, SYNNEX Comstor
Time with SYNNEX Comstor: 3 Months
Like many people who have started new jobs in the last year, Stephen Scruggs has faced challenges both expected and unique. “Remote work has put my home office in my bedroom, and it has taken a lot to resist the mid-day nap.”
While getting used to the new work environment, Scruggs was most surprised by the ease of connecting with people online. “Coming to SYNNEX Comstor, I was a little worried about making connections in a virtual setting,” Scruggs told us. “But connecting with my coworkers has been way easier than I could have hoped.”
In his role as a Discovery Representative, Scruggs has committed to learning the ins and outs of the IT channel. “I’ve learned a lot about the distribution industry, but more importantly, I’ve met a lot of really great and helpful people who have shared how best to deliver results to SYNNEX Comstor partners.” Scruggs looks forward to using his skills in the future.