Over the past 40 years, Alliance SI has developed a reputation for quality in network and electrical engineering, which saw it become a supplier of choice for data centre services across the country.

A decade ago that reputation caught the eye of Amazon Web Services (AWS), with Alliance SI chosen to install the networking for AWS’s first data centre in Australia, at its Sydney Region. Alliance SI was subsequently asked to play an expanded role in developing AWS’s second Australian region in Melbourne, which will commence operations in 2022.

The strength within the cloud

The result of this investment is that for many Australians using the cloud for work, shopping, or any other reason, there is a good chance they are using a network that Alliance SI helped build.

According to the company’s Sales and Marketing Director, Steve de Mamiel, there is an equal chance most Australians won’t know the role Alliance SI played. “We are all about network infrastructure, which is the bit no one hears about – when you build a house, no one talks about the plumbing,” de Mamiel jokes. But as every homeowner knows, getting the plumbing right is critical for the smooth running of a household, and the same holds true for the cloud.

This is why de Mamiel says Alliance SI is unwavering in its commitment to the highest standards of quality. “We win and maintain many of our clients due to our discipline around project management,” de Mamiel says. “After 40 years in the industry, we have mature processes that our customers really look for.”

Meeting customer demand

With a surge in the use of digital technology following the COVID-19 pandemic, the ABS recently released data that shows 55% of Australian businesses are leveraging paid cloud computing (up from 42% in 2017-18 and 31% in 2015-16)[1]. The rapid uptake of cloud services in Australia means Alliance SI’s services are in constant demand.

National Account Manager for AWS, Dion Cabal, says Alliance SI has worked hard to keep up with customers’ demands, “AWS needed a provider to could help them to support the growing use of cloud technology,” Cabal says. “There is a constant evolution needed as data centres are upgraded to build more storage and compute for the cloud.”

A privately-owned company, Alliance SI employs more than 80 people around Australia, with most based in its Sydney headquarters. The company also manages a network of subcontracting technicians to supply remote services at 270 locations across the country. The new AWS Region being built in Melbourne has led Alliance SI to bring on an additional 20 contractors, some of which de Mamiel says will stay with the company after the construction phase is completed.

Building Australian skills

The specialised nature of Alliance SI’s work sees it place a strong emphasis on skills development, and the company runs an apprenticeship program that brings young workers into the industry. De Mamiel says two apprentices recently graduated to become qualified technicians, and they’ve taken on four more to help meet future demand, including its first female apprentice.

“AWS are an important driver of that,” de Mamiel says. “We are bringing them through from apprenticeships to become qualified technicians, and on to becoming managers and supervisors.”

De Mamiel says the company has also achieved remarkable longevity with its staff, such as National Account Manager Joe Garzaniti, who began with the company as a graduate electrical apprentice 40 years ago.

As Alliance SI looks to the future, de Mamiel believes the strong relationship with AWS will continue to fuel the growth of his company. “As technologies change, we have evolved and taken on new challenges to help customers” de Mamiel says.

[1] https://www.abs.gov.au/statistics/industry/technology-and-innovation/characteristics-australian-business/latest-release