Retainer Engagements

What if you could have an AWS architect available on-demand?

One thing is for sure: AWS sneaks up on you. First you add a few EC2 instances. A few turns into a few dozen. EC2 turns into S3, Elasticache, Lambda, CloudFront, and a few dozen other services. Before you know it, answering the question, “What services do we use?” is a nightmare. When the CTO drops by and says, “Hey, why aren’t we using AWS Chainsaw, that new service they announced this morning?” you start thinking that Dante’s stay in the ninth level of hell maybe wasn’t so bad.


“My AWS account is a raging tire fire.”
— Everyone

So, what if you could have high-level, specialized AWS expertise available to you whenever you need it? Wouldn’t it be amazing to bounce ideas off of someone who’s Totally Been There™, without having to crawl through forums, hire an iffy contractor, or brave the sales barrage of whatever VAR’s business card is on your desk?

You work with one environment a year, whereas I work with over a dozen different AWS environments--sometimes in a single month. As a result, I can provide insight into how different services and approaches work and at various levels of scale, potentially saving you from painful experiences that are only obvious in hindsight. A retainer with me gives you direct access to everything I’ve learned. For the more tricky problems, my industry network often allows me to get more accurate answers quicker than you could through official channels--and because I’m not partnered with any vendors, there is never any question of who my advice benefits (hint: it’s always you).

How does it work?

Practically speaking, I’ll hang out in your chat system (eg Slack) and provide advice to your team based on my experience and what I’ve seen work at other companies.

Our agreement entitles you to unlimited 24/7 access to me via phone, email, and any chat system your team uses. I return all messages no later than the next business day, although in my practice response time is much quicker (particularly between 9am to 5pm PST). We’ll need to schedule any meetings in advance to ensure I have time to adequately prepare. I’m happy to do meetings over the phone, video chat, or in person. 

Retaining Corey is one of the better decisions we’ve made. We’re able to focus on serving our customers instead of keeping tabs on AWS’s latest shifts.
— Kendall Miller, COO ReactiveOps

Some areas of involvement you may find valuable:

  • Technical review of architecture, service usage, source code, documentation, and the like. Where appropriate, I'll provide code samples, proof-of-concept examples, and design mockups. 
  • Periodic competitive analysis and market insight based on interactions with the developer community, both in person (e.g. speaking engagements, meet-ups, user groups), and online (e.g. Twitter, RSS feeds, blog posts/comments, Slack communities, mailing lists).
  • Other random situations, as they come up (eg, “What does this new service announcement mean for our architecture?”, “How do we split our AWS account into multiple accounts, without going mad?”)

As you can imagine with this level of partnership, availability is limited. You can elect to be added to the waiting list if spots are not available. Contact me to inquire about availability and pricing.


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