SDI Employee Spotlight – Charles Williams, ServiceNow Solutions Architect

At SDI, we believe in our work and treasure the people who do it so very well.  

This month, our employee spotlight focuses on Charles Williams, whose storied career and spirited character make him an integral part of our nascent-but-knowledgeable ServiceNow Solutions team.  

How did you get your start at SDI? 

I worked with Ric Mims and Anthony Orr previously for several years, and we kept in touch. Earlier this year, we met for dinner in Dallas to catch up. They shared that they were building a team to launch a ServiceNow practice at SDI. I think the dinner was a setup 😊. They knew I had many years of experiences as a Senior ServiceNow Consultant. Accepting the opportunity to interview was a no-brainer for me. 

Tell us about your current role.  

My title is ServiceNow Solution Architect, but sometimes, I am the chief cook and bottle washer (just kidding). I lead the ServiceNow IT Service Management (ITSM) implementation project at Chicago Transit Authority (CTA), wearing the Engagement Manager, Business Analyst and Solution Architect hats. I also helped create the new SDI ServiceNow multi-tenant offerings, and I analyze and forecast the ServiceNow Solutions Team resource utilization. 

How did you end up in this career?  

Sheer luck! I was one of the last draftees to the Vietnam War, so I was inducted into the military and given no choice about my job (as a draftee, you did what you were told, or you were court-martialed).  

After Vietnam, I was assigned to learn computer programming, and I became a programmer for the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) in Colorado Springs, CO. After fulfilling my military obligation, I enrolled at the University of Iowa and earned a BS in Computer Science. This launched my career in IT.  

What do you like most about your career? 

Boy, what a ride! And it’s not over yet. I like the pay, the challenges, and the pace.   

I have learned and worked on many technologies and platforms over the years, from mainframes to PCs, to web and cloud-based solutions, and now the ServiceNow platform. Throughout my career, I have worked hard to become a specialist in each new focus area. Doing that has helped me to meet challenges I face and achieve the things I want.  

What’s something that has surprised you about your chosen career path?  

There’s never a boring moment, but no matter how rapidly technology changes, the underlying principles and methods for success have stayed the same over the years. The basics of identifying/defining business processes, designing solutions, establishing business value, creating/reporting on performance metrics, managing projects, collaborating with peers, and supporting clients haven’t changed much. I often find myself reapplying principles and methods that I learned in the past and refining them for the future.  

What is your team like?  

Ric Mims has done a great job of assembling a team of highly skilled individuals to move the SDI ServiceNow practice forward. We’re always there to help each other, and I believe we all realize the opportunity we have to build something special at SDI.  

What’s the most unique part about working at SDI?  

It’s rare for a company to be so focused on work/life balance. SDI hosts amazing team building events and activities, and I am glad to participate whenever I can.  

If you could wake up tomorrow with a new skill, what would it be?  

I would be a scratch golfer and/or a professional blues guitarist.  

How do you wind down after work?  

Sometimes I play the guitar, and other times I grab a cigar and cocktail and go sit on the back patio. I live in Dallas, Texas on a couple of acres. So, sitting outside and looking at nature always does it for me. 

How do you describe what you do for a living to family and friends? 

My dad said it best, when telling friends and family what I do. He said, “My son works with companies to help them figure out where they’re losing money, and he shows them how using technology can stop it.”  

What’s the best piece of professional advice you’ve ever received?  

Wow, so many to choose from. Here are a few:  

  • “When the student is ready, the teacher appears.” 
  • “Perfection is the enemy of good.” 
  • “To know others is wisdom, but to know yourself is enlightenment.” 
  • “The difference between a Contractor and a Consultant is the Contractor goes to work every day and asks the client, ‘What are we doing today?’ The Consultant goes to work every day and tells the client, ‘Here is what we need to do today.’

Stay tuned to the SDI blog to see who we’ll spotlight in October! In the meantime, CONTACT US to learn more about how SDI can help with your ITSM-related needs.