Julie Haley: Woman of the Day

Meet the Woman of the Day for August 30, 2017 - Julie Haley, CEO of Edge Solutions.

Julie Haley
CEO/Co-Founder, Edge Solutions

Location: Alpharetta, GA

URL: http://www.edge-solutions.com

Number of years in current position: 9

Number of years involved with indirect sales: 9

Twitter Handle: @EdgeJulieHaley

Fun Facts:
Has a female boss
Enjoys public speaking
Has an advanced degree
Has worked for a solution provider organization
Has a mentor
Is a mentor
Has a personal mantra
Had a lemonade stand
Has a blog

Biography and Background:
Ms. Haley, is the co-founder and CEO of Edge Solutions, an IT solutions provider company, She is a former business and commercial litigation attorney. Julie's leadership was integral to Edge Solution's number three spot on the 2012 INC 500 list, for Georgia's 2016 Fast 40 Award, and for the Atlanta Business Chronicle's "2016 Pacesetter Award," which named Edge Solutions as one of the top fastest growing private company in the Atlanta area. Also, Julie's focus on building a great culture has resulted in Edge Solutions award as a finalist by the ABC as one of Atlanta's Best Places to Work for the past four years. Ms. Haley was named as 2015 Woman of the Year for Technology Association of Georgia's Women in Technology, as the North Fulton Chamber's Small Business Person of the Year in 2011, CRN's Top "Power 50" Women of the Channel in 2011-2016. Currently, she serves on the Alpharetta Technology Commission (Chair 2015-16); Executive Board of Directors, Greater North Fulton Chamber of Commerce: Board Member for Gwinnett Technical College (2015-), Vice Chair on the Georgia Chamber of Commerce Small Business Advisory Council, Board of WOTC-East, and serves on the Board of Councilors for The Carter Center.

How have you personally helped advance your company's channel business over the past year?
1)After hearing from industry experts and realizing that the industry was quickly changing, I hired a consultant and put together a 3-month-long Strategic Planning with our management and technical team. Since traditional VARs are not going to make it, we planned a transformation into a services-led solution provider that focuses on specialized services, hybrid cloud architecture and opening up the SLED market for EDGE. Based on this plan, we have already hired 2 technical services employees, an expert on hybrid cloud architecture, and an experience SLED account executive. 2) My work on several technology and business related boards has resulted in some key relationships, which have blossomed into new accounts and increase technology sales in 2016 3) The WIT Woman of the Year Award has led to many speaking opportunities this past year. That exposure has been an amazing marketing tool for Edge and has resulted in 7 net-new clients in 2016.

What are your goals for your company's channel business over the next year?
Base on our 2016 Strategic Planning, our 2017 goals are 1) to transform into a services-led solution provider by building a bench of specialized serves around VMware & networking : 2) to build a hybrid cloud architecture consulting team; and 3) to build a SLED team to increase our state, local and higher education client-base. This is important because most of our revenue comes from commercial accounts, and when the next downturn comes, it would be prudent to have more accounts that always have a dependable government-paid budget!

What honors, awards or commendations have you won over the past year?
The most important honor this past year came in a letter from President Carter, asking me to join The Carter Center's Board of Councilors. This was based on recommendations and my prior advocacy work for the GA PTA and board work in Nepal for the Himalayan Children's Charities. I am also very proud of Edge's growth awards this year, the most prestigious being the ACG Award: After a rigorous selection process, including a videotaped presentation by me, ACG (Association for Corporate Growth) awarded Edge the 2016 Fast 40 Award as one of the top 40 fastest-growing middle-market companies in Georgia.

Outside of your family, please name a woman you admire and why:
Meg Whitman, CEO of Hewlett Packard Enterprise, is not your typical tech executive. She is approachable, results-oriented, and focused on the business aspects of IT. I admire Whitman as a seasoned leader who realizes that technology is the driving force of positive change in the way we live and do business. As the CEO of Edge, I have participated in several roundtable discussions with Meg Whitman and have watched her growth as a leader as she successfully navigated the division of HP into two separate companies, driving growth in both HP Inc. and HPE, and their partners' growth.

What advice would you give to young women who want to begin careers in technology?
You can write your ticket in this industry, and and it is never too late (I was 47 when I changed careers!) The latest research is clear: Companies with a strong, well-blended teams (gender-race-culture) are 45% more likely to grow market share and 70% more likely to capture new markets. Today, only a quarter of technology workers are women, so there is so much opportunity. Finally, find a sponsor in your company-someone to promote, protect, prepare you. In the tech field, women are 54% less likely to have a sponsor at the company than male employees.

If you could be any movie character for one day in real life, who would you be and why?
I would like to be the Amy Adams character in Arrival. She is a linguistics professor, expert on communications, and author on the subject of "universal languages" When aliens land on 8 locations all over the world, she is called in to find out their intentions. She cracks the code and is able to bring together the world leaders to prove the aliens peaceable intentions. It takes a woman to bring world peace!

If you could travel to a city you've never been to before, all expenses paid, where would you go and why?
The city I would love to travel to is Reykjavik, Iceland. I have read about the city's arts scene, cool nightlife and the slew of natural wonders that lie right on its doorstep. I am a foodie, and it is known for the freshest fish and other seafood. I love to hike, and then can soak my sore knees in the many steamy hot pools resting on the edge of a wind-battered cliff. Finally, this brilliant capital city also hosts many tech companies, including an innovative cloud company that I want to partner with!

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