Our Business Development Manager Vincent is responsible for users in the Asia-Pacific region. With a support background, he assists both our new and existing users with their business and development needs, ensuring that UpCloud’s platform helps them achieve their goals.
What are the specifics of the cloud industry in the Asia-Pacific region?
We can see cloud usage growing in the Asia-Pacific in the last 3-5 years, mainly among small and medium-sized enterprises. In the past, most users would prefer traditional methods of on-premise solutions. I’m talking especially about government entities with looming concerns over privacy and security. Nowadays, we see that even government entities are promoting cloud solutions alongside the security industry boom. The friction has lessened significantly, and more companies are opting in because of cost-effectiveness. There are no maintenance fees, and the manpower requirements are much lower.
And what about the users’ demands?
Users worldwide generally value response time a lot, especially in faster-paced countries. The cloud is still new to many, and naturally, the questions arise. Therefore, providing a dedicated point of contact is extremely important. Responding quickly to the user shows that the service provider is efficient, and its sales team knows what they are doing. The next most important thing is the price vs performance ratio, as everyone wants to ensure the best possible bottom line.
Have you noticed any differences between users from different countries within the region?
In terms of requirements, there are no significant differences. Every user in every region has their own business model and specific requirements for running their business. We take care of them regardless of where they are from. While English is the universal language, I also communicate with users from Thailand and Vietnam who prefer to speak their native languages.
Our latest data centre has been opened in Sydney. What can UpCloud bring to the Australian market?
Closer proximity means better latency. With the Sydney data centre launch, the Oceania region has now another service provider to choose from. We have included the latest AMD EPYC processor combined with MaxIOPS, our high-performance block storage, in this setup. Moreover, our live chat ensures faster response time over traditional email support, fortifying our reliability and assurance values with our N+1 design.
Have you always wanted to work in IT or sales?
Not at all! In school, I envisioned myself to be a lawyer or a chef, even though they are two completely different fields. As you can imagine, parents’ influence on their children’s decisions is strong on this side of the hemisphere. Most parents feel that IT is the future, so I was encouraged by my folks to pursue a career in IT. Soon I realized that it indeed is a fascinating and challenging field with lots of stuff to learn every day.
What brought you to a sales position?
I started my career as a system engineer. Troubleshooting, replacing and maintaining server components were my responsibilities. I wanted to challenge myself with a target to chase for and take a step further into my career, and I felt that sales fulfil that. Every interaction is unique, and it helps me build up my confidence with more people I meet. It has been a fun ride!
Besides that, what is the most challenging for you when approaching new users?
Everyone has their own terminologies and naming conventions as to how they express themselves. I think it’s the same for any customer-facing job out there. It can be challenging to navigate their requirements from the get-go but certainly enriching and fulfilling once you get the hang of it.
How do you think the sales work will change in the future?
Inevitably, people would think of sales as pushy and convincing you into buying a product that is not necessary. I would like to change that impression. Rather than traditional sales, I think it has evolved into a consultancy role in which we try to understand both the technical and commercial aspects of our clients’ requirements.
During the pandemic, we also had to adapt to new communication platforms. And as more companies are becoming global and expanding beyond their region, virtual communication will be used even more. E-meetings are convenient, cheaper and without any necessary travel arrangements. I can easily book a meeting with a user at any time that suits them.
Was there something that surprised you when you joined UpCloud?
Despite everything being virtual, I was astonished by the freedom to express myself. I never felt awkward talking to anyone or held back because of the cultural differences. Meetings are very casual. It’s almost like listening and talking to a group of friends!
What makes you happy at work?
Working at UpCloud for quite some time and having spoken to many users, it brings me a sense of achievement whenever I manage to help them. I also genuinely enjoy talking to my colleagues in Singapore and other UpCloud’s offices and exchanging cultural differences. There’s so much to learn every day!
What kind of person are you outside of work?
I must admit I’m quite a nerd. When I was younger, I used to stay home and play games most of the time. Nowadays, I meet people much more and build my social network, which also helps me at work. It takes some time to get to know me, but I quickly become a very relaxed and funny guy when I talk to someone I know.
Would you like to work with Vincent? See our open positions.