Major life changes recently! Here’s the summary:

  • I left Skyline in December 2015
  • I moved to Austin, TX in December 2015
  • I started at Microsoft in January 2016

It’s been a hectic needless to say I haven’t been able to blog much lately. First, lets discuss the new job. I’m now working at Microsoft as a SharePoint Premier Field Engineer. What is that you might ask? Here’s some good information written by others:

Here’s my personal take – There are 2 types of PFE’s: Transactional and Dedicated. Transactional is more project-based (Risk Assessments, Workshops, etc.) and usually travel quite a little bit more. I fall under the dedicated role, which means I am assigned certain customers and work with them on a daily basis. It’s been a mix of everything from learning the environments, best practices for configuring different services/features, demos, chalk talks, etc. It’s definitely a change of pace from consulting as PFE’s do not touch the keyboard! I think it’s been very beneficial to take a step back from pumping out installs, upgrades, health checks, etc. and focus on how the product actually works/what business value it can provide.

OK, let’s talk about the new digs. I’m loving Austin, TX so far! There is so much character in this city and the attention to detail at a lot of the venues is amazing. There is a ton of events/concerts (Live Music Capital of the World) plus the food scene is amazing. Also, there is a lot to do here in the outdoors/sports realm – I’ve been doing a lot of CrossFit, rock climbing, hiking, kayaking, biking, etc. As far as the move itself I feel like I could really write an entire blog series about this, but it doesn’t really fit in with this whole SharePoint Admin vibe. Moving required a lot of organization, patience, and diligence. Here’s a few tips/lessons learned:

  • DO YOUR RESEARCH! I found a great Reddit page to get started –
  • Use an apartment locator. They don’t cost anything (The apartment/condo they refer you to has a marketing budget for apt locators). I was able to find a nice apartment sight unseen (The apt locator uploaded some videos on YouTube for me to watch). I highly recommend Gregg at Austin Cool –
  • I personally decided to sell a ton of stuff before moving. I realize this may not be in the cards for everyone, but it was kind of a freeing experience. Getting quotes from moving companies really opened my eyes on the cost. For Example – It would have cost me ~$250 extra to move my futon..which I want to say only cost about that much brand new. I sold the futon to a friend and had a couch shipped to the new apartment (Free Shipping).
  • I decided to ship my car and stuff…both of them ended up arriving toward the later part of the delivery window (The moving companies will give you a few day buffer). I recommend you keep enough clothes/essentials on you so you don’t end up wearing the same shirt three days in a row.

There’s a ton more I could share on this, but I figured I’d at least give a high level overview. Now that I’m a little more settled into the new city and new job I should be able to blog on a more consistent basis. One more shameless plug – I’ve been helping out with the Austin Office 365 & SharePoint Users Group. I highly suggest you check the MeetUp page and if you’re in/visiting Austin check out a meeting!