An interview with Senior System's Engineer, Johannes Henkel

Ahead of our System Administrators conference later this month, we got in touch with our guest speaker, Johannes Henkel to find out about his role at JAMF Software as a Senior Systems Engineer.
How long have you been working as a systems engineer?
In general for a bit more than 20 years. Right from the very start, my career has always focused on Apple technology. For the last couple of years, I have also worked as an Apple Trainer.
What are the top 3 questions asked by your clients?
Wow – I’m not sure if I could quantify all of them like this.
Most of my customers have very different expectations and, therefore, a variety of questions – as we cover many different aspects of Device Management.
So – there might be some top 3 questions from each client, but overall….?
Let me tell you the top two replies to most technical questions like, “Can I…” or “I can not …”

  1. It depends! 😉
  2. If you do it correctly, it will work as expected!

What’s a typical day like working as systems engineer for JAMF Software?

A typical workday in my role as a Systems Engineer consists of meetings and calls with customers. Help them during the evaluation, so they can get the most out of it. Besides the meetings there is, of course, research and testing for specific challenges that the customer is facing during the evaluation.
Over the next 3 to 5 years, what do you think will be the next big change in our industry?
The big change is already in progress, I believe. Companies will more and more understand that the real value in their company lives in their employees. By giving them the tools to work with, that they actually enjoy working with, is a win not only for the employee but also for the company in terms of productivity and results.
But the really big change for us as IT folks will be, that we won’t – at least on the end user side of things – need to customize so much and put so much effort in it. So it hopefully works how it was intended to work.
I believe we will see more of what we already see: “It just Works!”
IT will stop fighting against the fire and rather start adding value for their end users in terms of better workflows and tools.
What is the best advice you have ever been given?
“Better ask too often how to do something, even if it makes you look stupid, then not to ask and make it wrong.”
What made you decide to get into tech?
For me technology is something fantastic.
Not only can it help us to stop doing things that we just need to do (like mowing the grass) – instead have technology to do it! But it also does allow us so much more communication with each other.
I started back in the days when my brother came back from the US with a solution called “First Class“ which was – back in the days before there was this thing called the “Internet“- an online-platform for people to dial in and communicate with each other.
With the look and feel of a Mac OS 7 Desktop. Great products – still exist I think 😉
What do you do to keep up with changes in your field?
Be surrounded by great people with great knowledge helps. Besides this, I love to be challenged by my customers. That keeps me going. Researching, reading, testing.
If all technology was to cease what would you do?
Pay a lot more attention to my garden and start to grow food 😉
Johannes will be presenting a 45 minute session on using JAMF Software’s Casper Suite in the Enterprise via series of case studies and demonstrations at our annual System Administrators Conference in London.
Limited tickets are still available, so please book today to ensure you don’t miss out on attending this year’s event.