October 14, 2021 | Articles
“Technology is the backbone for all companies,” says Hill Senior Vice President, Global Information Technology Shayn Spingler. Spingler’s comment rings true so widely in business literature that IT’s importance can be taken for granted. Nevertheless, Spingler also acknowledges a disconnect between the recognition of IT’s importance and the lack of awareness about the actual work an IT team does. “Most people only know IT as the group that gives them a laptop, monitor, keyboard, phone, and email, or answers their help desk queries” she says.
IT at Hill
As Spingler implies, technology is Hill’s backbone, providing “a diversified, robust, secure, and flexible technology environment,” she says. The Hill IT team includes server and network engineers that work on the company’s software and cloud infrastructure. The IT infrastructure of a company gives life to those laptops, phones, e-mail addresses, or help desks that employees know IT for, explains Spingler. The IT team also builds connectivity and secure data storage into that infrastructure. In addition, Hill has a team of enterprise resource planning (ERP) architects working to ensure systems are configured properly so all employees—from billing coordinators to country managers—can execute their work efficiently.
“To understand IT,” says Spingler, “think about when the curtain was pulled back on the wizard in the Wizard of OZ.” Like the wizard, IT manages many moving pieces and levers so an organization can seamlessly provide all the technology services clients and colleagues need—and IT does much of this out of sight.
Spingler herself leads all of Hill’s global IT operations. She is responsible for strategizing to improve efficiency and creating technology advancements for the firm’s software product solutions and network and server architecture. She oversees a multi-million-dollar budget, including vendor management and contract negotiations, and is responsible for all cyber-security measures, as well as IT compliance.
However, “an IT senior leader is only as good as the people they surround themselves with,” Spingler says. Some of her trusted lieutenants include: Director of Technical Services Vinny Pastino, who manages the global Site Support, Help Desk, Network/Telephony, and Server Teams; Systems Engineering Manager Jeff Wiltshire, who works closely with Pastino in establishing standards and leads most of Hill’s technical systems initiatives; and Senior ERP Solutions Architect Mary Micucci, who supports Hill’s finance system, coordinating with all areas of the organization.
While these are some of the big names, Spingler says: “Everyone on my team performs an important role. I regularly restructure my department and move people around so IT can best support Hill as the company and my employees grow and change.”
Growth and Change
While Spingler identifies growth and change as a factor that makes her own team stronger, she also recognizes that, where IT is concerned, change can be frightening or perceived as disruptive. “Technology can be a scary thing,” she admits. “For example, users might be afraid they won’t be able use new software, or that they won’t be able use it efficiently.”
This can provide a challenge for IT Departments at any company. But Spingler approaches these situations with a positive attitude, saying that such challenges are really just opportunities. Specifically, the fear of technology creates opportunities for IT to collaborate with other departments and share information about what IT actually does.
“I take opportunities like these to show everyone that technology can make things easier for them.” Spingler says. “When people get over their fears, open up to change, and partner with IT, the outcome is always positive. Getting IT involved early in company planning also ensures technology solutions are ready and appropriate for any business decisions from the outset.”
An Integrated Team
“My favorite part of my work is when IT is embraced,” Spingler adds. “Getting to see how it helps people do their jobs more effectively and efficiently is extremely rewarding. When people are doing their jobs more effectively, the company does better. That is why it is also important for my team to put proper user documentation and training together, so that we don’t just tell just our colleagues ‘technology is easy,’ but provide tools that show them how easy and helpful it is.
Spingler also hopes her words resonate with other IT professionals, from those beginning their IT careers to senior IT professionals. “If you are a driven and flexible professional, eager for exposure to many different areas of IT in a global environment, and someone who values a collaborative, whole-company approach to IT, then Hill is definitely where you want to be,” she concludes.
For more information about Hill IT, reach out directly to Shayn at [email protected] or call Hill’s corporate headquarters at (800) 283-4088. For more information about Hill, please visit www.hillintl.com.
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