Life @ 45 Degrees: Stijn Depril

Who are you and what do you do?

Well, my name is Stijn Depril. What do I do? I work as a FinOps Architect and Practice Lead. My job is made up of two parts. On the one hand, I anticipate the effective implementation of a FinOps culture for our clients, and on the other hand, I tend to shape our practice more within 45 Degrees. FinOps is only one part of the client’s cloud journey, but one with a lot of common touch points, and that’s precisely why the focus needs to be on this to present this to the client in the right way.

Prior to 45 Degrees, I was always in presales and looked at things from a technical, infrastructural standpoint. Over the years, I was frequently presented to FinOps toolings and questioned why customers and partners did so little with them. As a result, I felt compelled to bridge the gap between the client and Cloud finance.

This is how I ended up at 45 Degrees. I already knew Sam D’alleine, started talking and it turned out that together we could make the FinOps puzzle fall into place. A great fit! Because FinOps is still a young and expanding sector, there is relatively little market expertise available to the client. And it is precisely at this point that 45 Degrees wishes to assist the consumer. FinOps problem? Better call 45 Degrees!

How’s life at 45 Degrees? 

I feel like we are really moving like a bullet train. We began with a FinOps practice that Sam D’alleine had been developing for eight to nine months. This is where I contribute my ideas, and it’s fantastic how quickly we’re currently developing and expanding. That’s great, because it feels like we’re accomplishing a tremendous amount. 45 Degrees also provides us with excellent support and help. I also connected with the team right away, having already participated in a team building activity, which was a great way to get started.

Within 45 Degrees we also have a common pattern of thinking; technology is not the driver in digital transformation. It’s a combination of people, processes, and technology. FinOps is an excellent example of the influence people and processes have on the technology and the business in the end.

What are your ambitions and next steps? 

Together with Sam D’alleine, we are very ambitious. Why? Well, we want to make a difference. 45 Degrees aspires to be recognized as a true trusted adviser in the Benelux for FinOps, among other things. When clients think, “How do I get this cloud invoice under control?”, they immediately think of us. How do we intend to do this? Through our actual experiences and the creation of new ones. This is accomplished not only through a strategic plan, but also through building communities, providing training and helping customers operationally. 

Our biggest challenge is the “in the making” FinOps market.  In other words, there is still not a lot of demand for it, therefore there will be evangelistic work to do with consumers to inform them to get started with their cloud billing as soon as possible. Then again, if there is a demand for it, there are few profiles currently knowledgeable about it as well. As we grow, we also need more people with this knowledge. And with the current war of talent, the is certainly not easy.

How does 45 Degrees support you in this challenge? 

Naturally, we get access to 45 Degrees’ clientele and various contacts. Of course, their Cloud architecture has already earned them a decent reputation. In this broader story, FinOps fits perfectly. Furthermore, the Bluu ecosystem and The Cronos Group are big, both in terms of relationships and competence. Diederik Wyffels, in particular, provides us with the possibility to verify that the FinOps story can be constructed in an appropriate, structural manner. As a result, he is an excellent mentor to both me and Sam.