Meet Marlene Rogers, Dasher’s IT services project manager!
By Hallie Barnes, Marketing Coordinator & Marlene Rogers, Project Manager
Q&A: I spent a little time with Marlene to talk about what it takes to be a project manager for the Dasher engineering services team. She serves many people including our clients, account executives and engineers keeping folks in line and on schedule. This blog will give us a chance to learn more about Marlene in and outside of the office.
A little bit of background… Over the past several years, Dasher has greatly expanded our services offerings and partnerships to ensure we have the ability to not only sell solutions, but also to provide integration and advanced deployment services. As that business practice has grown, we began to use contract employees for project management. It was a great way to ensure that projects were executed effectively and completed on time.
In 2015, Dasher Technologies expanded our capabilities to manage professional services projects by bringing in a full time project manager. Marlene Rogers has been an account executive for over 20 years and ultimately decided that she was ready for a new challenge. Marlene has become an even more valuable member of the Dasher team by providing our clients, sales and engineering teams with a central and single point of contact for all-things project management. For our sales and engineering teams, it means they can focus on what they do best, which is spending time with our clients helping them address their business challenges.
Hallie: Tell me a little bit about how you got started with Dasher and how your role has evolved.
Marlene: My Mom worked at HP for 17 years then moved to Sun Microsystems for 20 years. During that time she saw the market for technology was growing fast and suggested I jump in now.
Al Chien, VP of Sales & Marketing, recruited me in 2008 from a competitor. I was there for 13 years and have been at Dasher for over 7 years. I had great experiences as an account executive where I was constantly learning about new technology and applying it to help our clients architect and deploy successful business processes. I feel like project management is in my wheelhouse, mostly because I enjoy being organized and putting things together. When I was an account executive, I worked closely with San Jose Evergreen Community College on a multi-year campus network upgrade project and it was clear to me that my skills for managing the complexity of the project could be used to help other Dasher clients as a full time project manager. I truly enjoyed the project management aspects of supporting this important client for Dasher.
Hallie: What does your role entail?
Marlene: As a project manager, I focus on supporting our Dasher teams by scheduling and managing post-sales services. I facilitate and organize groups of people, coordinate resources and schedules, work with our logistics team to track where the equipment is in the shipping, integration and deployment phases based on our clients’ timelines. We start the project with one or more pre-service calls to ensure we have a complete statement of work that is accepted by the client so expectations can be met accordingly. The next phase is the most fun, where we integrate all of the people, process and technology components for the project implementation, whether onsite or remote.
A project manager does a lot of behind the scenes coordination so they can free up the sales and engineering teams to focus on helping our clients meet their needs. Since I was an account executive, I understand both the sales process as well as the service delivery process. I love supporting Dasher in this role and ensuring the success of our clients. It is very beneficial to take the project management responsibilities off of the engineering team as well as allow them to focus on technical issues, not on logistics of project timing, scheduling, etc. I get a lot of satisfaction out of being the glue to bind all of our departments (engineering, sales & operations) together. In 2015, I began investing my time in training to obtain a certification as a PMP (project management professional) so that I can be an even more efficient project manager.
Hallie: What is your life like outside of Dasher?
Marlene: I’m happily married and have one son (4 years-old). For fun, I can’t say no to a day in Sonoma wine tasting with friends. I also enjoy photography, actively experiencing the world, and participating in church. I would love to travel more someday. My number one place to go is Italy (Rome), because I want to explore my culture and its history.
Hallie: What are some challenges you’ve run into as a project manager?
Marlene: There is not enough time in the day! It feels like we never have enough time to get everything done, but don’t we all feel that way? I’m a very driven, focused and upfront person and my priority is to do the best for our clients.
Hallie: What do you find most interesting about the IT industry?
Marlene: The rapid change in technology is incredible. We start somewhere, develop, move forward and then start over with an enhanced version of technology. It amazes me how quickly the landscape advances and changes. I also never thought I would go into technology sales because of the classic view of a salesperson is negative. I’m happy that I have been able to integrate trust and morality into our industry and align with Dasher’s core values. My transition from sales to project management has allowed me to keep engaged with the rapid pace of change, and leverage my interest and desire to deliver the best experience that I can for our clients and for the Dasher team. I love my new role!