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High-tech equipment for Microsoft is set up

Partnering with Microsoft to Transport High-tech Equipment to their Datacenter Academies in EMEA

The Microsoft Datacenter Academy (DCA) program assists education partners in Microsoft Datacenter communities to deliver the training and certification necessary to enable employment in the growing cloud computing and IT sectors.

In the digital economy, growth is always a top objective. With the ever-changing landscape in cloud computing, there is never time to be stagnant. Leading global logistics provider DB Schenker, and digital transformation and technology leader Microsoft, share a similar vision when it comes to enriching the lives of others. Both global operations strive to make continued impacts in the supply chain and technology worlds respectively; they also share an understanding and passion for growing the future of the next generation. An opportunity to enrich the lives of tomorrow’s future leaders has been created through the Datacenter Academies (DCA), a workforce development program from the Microsoft Datacenter Community Development (DCCD) team, with resources provided by Microsoft datacenters.

Microsoft Azure datacenter

Microsoft datacenters are unique buildings strategically located around the globe where cloud services are managed. The datacenters provide high availability, low latency, scalability, and the latest cloud infrastructure and advancements. Technology in the datacenters must meet rigorous standards for the Microsoft cloud.

At a certain stage, datacenter equipment is repurposed for use in DCA labs. Using decommissioned datacenter equipment serves two purposes; first, it supports Microsoft’s broader sustainability efforts. Second, and more important, it offers valuable work experience for students enrolled in the Datacenter Academy program.

Students gain their knowledge as part of the DCA’s CompTIA (The Computing Industry Association) aligned learning process and A+ certification program. Training in these programs spans from 2 to 20 months and covers subjects such as computer network connectivity, troubleshooting and maintenance, infrastructure cabling, copper, fiber optic testing, and more. Students enjoy valuable real-world experience with this technology before entering the digital workforce. CompTIA research shows students who pass their certifications will command a higher salary in the IT marketplace and find themselves moving faster in promotion tracks. This affords local community members a leg up on jobs in the digital economy and if they choose to relocate, these certifications go with them. Additionally, The Microsoft DCCD Workforce Development team offers scholarships which provide tuition support for students from historically underrepresented backgrounds.

“Ongoing education and a commitment to development is a mission throughout Microsoft,” said Bob Reitinger, Workforce Development Manager at Microsoft. “We must continue investing in education and training to assure everyone has the skills to thrive and participate in the digital economy. This is at the core of our business philosophy and why we to look partner with other companies with like philosophies as it relates to education and giving back to the communities they serve,” he commented.  

After the local vocational, or similar, education partnership is developed and the DCA lab location is selected, Microsoft’s Workforce Development team partners with local construction companies to outfit the new lab with the necessary cooling, ventilation, and wiring to support lab operations. In addition, it works with its logistics and transportation partners to provide the critical role of transporting the donated datacenter equipment to the DCA labs.

“DB Schenker is one of our global logistics and transportation partners providing these critical services for our academies,” added Reitinger. “Working with them gives us the ability to cross borders and access communities where we have not yet developed relationships with other companies.” remarked Reitinger.

DB Schenker’s Dedicated Services Team (SDS) orchestrated the entire logistics process making it an effortless exercise for Microsoft. Arranged racks were properly crated to ensure the highly sensitive equipment was not damaged in transit. Air ride trailers with tail lifts were used for shipping to the final destination.

“We value our long-term relationship with Microsoft as well as their commitment to growing the enterprising minds of tomorrow,” said Rene van Maasakkers, Global Account Director for DB Schenker. “We were honored to work with them on this exciting project and look forward to partnering with them on similar projects in the future. Like Microsoft, our company understands the importance and need to invest in education and training to provide academic opportunities for everyone to thrive in our digital world,” he added.

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