Daniel Quach – former CIO, Public Utilities Commission

Daniel Quach – former CIO, Public Utilities Commission 600 600 Shandam Consulting

When I came into my CIO role at PUC about five years ago, our network environment was in bad shape. We had a lot of old equipment and competing technologies that had not kept up with the times. Shandam had been retained by my predecessor for an assessment. I was impressed by their integrity. They called it like they saw it. Shandam’s assessment was comprehensive and reflected the skill set of its staff.

In 2010, we got hit with a virus. I didn’t have the staff I needed to get us back on our feet. I called Shandam on Wednesday. By Friday, their team had set up shop in our S.F. office and spent all day, working side-by-side. They really got us out of a jam. That’s when I really knew they were a team I could rely on.

Later, Shandam helped us undertake a large-scale, high-risk project. Our exchange server and mission critical data center were located in an old building with insufficient power and cooling capacity, causing serious network instability.

Shandam Consulting observed that no in-place retrofit would provide total security, because this building was in the middle of an earthquake zone. They made the case for relocating operations to nearby Sacramento, which was both seismically inactive and reasonably inexpensive. They put together a moving solution for a modest monthly rent. This wasn’t a big payday for Shandam, but we got the best possible result at a much lower cost.

I’ve been in IT for 20 years. I’ve engaged with a lot of consultants. It’s not “skills” you need to look for. The bad ones… they come to you, go in, do what they have to do and get out. The good ones tell you the things you should be doing, even at a cost to themselves. Being honest might not make more money in the short term, but it builds lasting relationships. I relied on Shandam a lot. Today we have great mutual respect for each other.