Meet Peter Orsi, Senior Sales Consultant at Charterhouse Group, our Extreme Champion of the quarter
Congratulations to the Charterhouse team for becoming an Extreme Champion. What does this achievement mean both for you and your company?
It’s a great achievement and something we’re all very proud of. We always strive to be at the forefront of the Extreme channel in terms of our technical accreditation and the breadth of skills that we maintain across our company. To be recognised with the Extreme Ultimate Master Certification is testament to that and our continued commitment to Extreme.
You’ve been instrumental in the growth of Charterhouse’s status as a top Extreme partner in the UK. Some time ago we asked your colleague Terry Dorricott about his biggest lead-generating success. What’s your story?
For over a decade I have worked with the National Health Service and local government in the UK. A lot of the business that we get comes from customer referrals – particularly in the NHS, where there seems to be an ever-increasing level of cooperation and federation. From a lead generating perspective, I do not think you can beat a happy, vocal customer base. Consequently, over the past few years, we have delivered a number of large-scale, cutting-edge deployments within the Public Sector.
What’s your personal secret to running a great account?
I’d like to think that my customers believe that I’m honest first and foremost and always have their best interests at heart. We try to price solutions as competitively as possible in the public sector, since funding is based on taxes. I’ve spent time working on site at NHS previously and you can really see the real-world benefits of technology projects and the tangible impact that we have on things like quality of patient care and efficiency.
Speaking of public sector, what are the biggest challenges and opportunities you’ve encountered?
There is always an element of financial challenge when it comes to the Public Sector. We strive to drive as much value as we possibly can for our customers in this market and I believe that Extreme, as a vendor, offers real value for money.
The pandemic has brought massive change, especially in local government. We’re seeing real consolidation of office space and physical networking footprint. At the start of the pandemic, we had to react incredibly quickly, servicing as many NHS customers as we could to get non-medical staff working from home instead from the office. We also had to assist on network redesigns for COVID wards and vaccination centers.
What do these changes mean for your business, moving forward?
I think the demands on public sector IT teams are only going to grow. We regularly see incredibly small teams of people running networks that are many thousands of nodes and the breadth of technology skill and understanding that they need to maintain is simply staggering. That’s why we’re seeing more technology outsourcing, as networks are effectively being handed off to suppliers to manage for customers.
In the last couple of years, we at Charterhouse have certainly seen a real increase in the appetite for network managed services and now that we have a mature and established delivery model in this space, I think this will be a significant opportunity for us moving forward.
How do you prepare your business for these and other changes?
Clearly, Extreme’s core switching, Wi-Fi, and network management portfolios are mature now. The recently announced extensions to SD-WAN and SASE are logical and necessary because for many customers, it’ll make sense to use Extreme technology with an SD-WAN solution, for example, based on the investment they have already made with Extreme in other areas. Take Extreme Fabric Connect as an example. There is already a tangible benefit to using this solution across WAN connections. The Ipanema acquisition, coupled with the capability and the extensibility already in the platform, is exciting.
What do you value the most in your partnership with Extreme?
I believe that the way that we go to market, so closely aligned to Extreme, is unique. I think it gives customers a warm and fuzzy feeling when they experience a seamless relationship between a vendor and partner, across all areas of their respective business, including sales, support, pre-sales, and engineering. Even when we get into project delivery phases, Extreme remains an integral part of that process with us and with our customers. I think it’s really a key success factor for any project.
If you weren’t in the networking business, what would like to be doing in life?
I’m the classic failed-professional footballer-turned-salesperson and I’ve been around football my entire life. That’s something I would really enjoy doing. I do help run a local grassroots football club, so who knows? Maybe I could become a full-time coach someday.
Have you carried any lessons learned from the football pitch into your career in the networking industry?
I had a couple of significant injuries as a teenager. That really changed my whole outlook on what I was going to do. I think I carry forward resilience and a willingness to adapt in the face of adversity into my professional career. We may not win every bit of business that we go for, but we learn, adapt, and go on to seek new wins