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Community means many things: what it means to me on my automation journey



talking over a computer.PNG


Written contribution from Chris Saunderson, Program Manager/Lead Architect for IT Automation at Sprint. He evangelizes automation at Sprint.



One of the best things about my work day is when I am able to talk to peers of mine in the Automation world. Why? Because nothing beats talking to someone who has done what you want to do, and is willing to share their experiences with you and shorten your learning curve.


Sprint IT has been a HP software customer for many years, and took on part of the Business Services Automation (BSA)Suite  in 2011. Coincidentally, we also started a small forum – back then, it was just ourselves and three other customers –to share experiences and knowledge between all of us. We appreciated the ability to bounce ideas off of other HP customers who had been working with the platforms we were deploying, and it gave us a sense of not being alone.


Flash forward three years, and there are over 20 customers all over the world who joined and formed a community of our own. This community is in addition to LinkedIn and the forums that HP provides – Discover US/Europe, and the online communities on HPLN.


So why do we like to have a community located somewhere other than HP forums? Sorry HP, but as Facebook would say: it’s complicated. While I certainly value the opportunities that HP provides to interact with them and amongst peers; it’s one thing to post on a forum and get a response, it’s another thing entirely to talk to a peer on the phone and work through a problem.


What do we talk about? It runs the gamut from experiences and interactions with HP, to feedback on new releases or bug fixes that have been released. We also kick around new ideas or new approaches for a business problem. As the moderator/coordinator, I am humbled to have such a group of talented group of peers (who happen to be HP customers) that I can interact with, question and learn from.


I make the offer to all who have taken the time to read this article to reach out to me here on the Grounded in the Cloud blog to join my forum. I put a broader request to all the readers of this blog: interact as much as you can in the forums that you have access to; together we make something great.

About the Author


This account is for guest bloggers. The blog post will identify the blogger.


Hi Chris -- I am a software development manager within the HP Server Automation R&D group, and one of my responsibilities is overseeing the promotion of the SA online community on HPLN.  On behalf of SA R&D, I would like to thank you for being a long time customer and advocate of Server Automation, and for running / promoting your own automation forum.  I was wondering if you had any feedback specifically regarding the SA online community on HPLN?  I would be interested in getting your thoughts in the spirit of improving the customer experience.  Feel free to send email to me at


Best regards,




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