Insights: Article

Kinetic IT wins first place at the 2022 AWS GameDay

Kinetic IT’s team of Amazon Web Services (AWS) specialists won gold at this year’s AWS GameDay. The team were up against AWS professionals from across Australia and used their AWS skills to take out first place in the 2022 AWS GameDay competition. We meet our team of winners and find out more about Kinetic IT’s partnership with AWS and the booming career opportunities in cloud services.

What is the AWS GameDay?

The AWS GameDay is a collaborative problem-solving competition, where teams come together to use skills in AWS solutions to solve a problem in a virtual world. It’s a practical opportunity for tech professionals to flex their skills in implementing AWS solutions, but also learn more about AWS services, best practices, and teamwork. As the teams navigate a range of open-ended technical challenges, they must think creatively to form their own unique solutions in live AWS accounts.

AWS Game Day Team West Siders 2022

The scenario at the 2022 AWS GameDay

The AWS GameDay centres around a fictitious setting, where the groups are new hires at Unicorn.Rentals (the largest provider of mythical creatures in the world) and this is their first day on the job. This year, the teams had to solve the problem of an imaginary, malfunctioning application. The teams had to troubleshoot and improve the app’s performance and reliability while considering costs.

Team West Siders secured the win by using their skills to implement application load balancing, request caching and scaling of applications deployed in the AWS cloud. They had some unexpected issues thrown at them, but remained focused, and brought home the win.

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Meet the winning Kinetic IT team from the 2022 AWS GameDay

Kinetic IT had three representatives at the 2022 AWS GameDay – Domenic Horner, Jamie Debono, and Herry Soemijantoro – AKA Team West Siders. The team said the day was excellent and it felt great to secure the win.

Herry Soemijantoro, Systems Engineer at our Water Corporation account, and Domenic Horner, Senior Applications Developer in Service Innovation, said the day was excellent and it felt great to secure the win. Domenic said, “I was confident that we had the skills needed to pull off the win, and we did.”

Jamie Debono is an Associate Systems Engineer at Kinetic IT’s Department of Education Service Operations account. He said that the team were “able to understand the challenge easily” and that it “felt good to beat the teams from the Eastern states.”

Domenic agreed, saying “The scenario was not too difficult for us, as we had a good idea of what to expect going in.” However, “There were some unexpected wildcards that got thrown at us, which we had to work around and determine why they were happening. The ‘Game Master’ would implement changes to the underlying AWS infrastructure to restrict access to and break the application code – without informing us. As a team, we had to determine what had changed and what actions would re-establish communication to the application or services that were misconfigured.”

Kinetic IT team at AWS GameDay

A future in the cloud

So what’s next for the team after winning the AWS GameDay? Jamie said he already has one AWS certification and intends to continue with his AWS development in his career. Domenic says he currently works in the AWS and Azure (Microsoft’s cloud computing services) DevOps space. He said, “It allows me to build applications and do projects for multiple customers, as well as assisting with both AWS Development and architecture as well as Azure DevOps tools.” Domenic uses AWS heavily on Kinetic IT’s AVA and CoPilot products. He also works on the Department of Education account, assisting with their Azure Cloud Migration, and provides support to the Qantas account with cloud development.

Domenic says, “I’ve been acquiring all the certificates in the AWS and Cloud space that I can, and I’ll continue to develop my passions in Cloud Native Development/Architecture, Automating Business Processes, and Designing Products and Services for the Cloud.  I enjoy helping people solve complex problems with automation so that we have more time for important and rewarding work.”

The team also said they’re keen to defend their title at next year’s AWS GameDay!

AWS GameDay medal ceremony

Kinetic IT’s partnership with AWS

Kinetic IT has partnered with AWS for over six years to deliver high-quality AWS services and solutions to our mutual customers. AWS is a market leader in cloud computing web services and delivering comprehensive cloud technologies. Our partnership with AWS means we can deliver adaptive cloud solutions to some of the largest enterprise environments in Australia.

We don’t just utilise AWS products – we combine our expertise with AWS technology and resources to build innovative solutions, such as:

  • Cloud Infrastructure as a Service: Seamless, large-scale cloud migrations driving digital transformation and operational efficiencies.
  • Data Lakes and Analytics: Big data and data analytics solutions deliver rich insights to help shape our customer’s futures.
  • Virtual Contact Centres: We enable remote working for contact centre staff so they can provide exceptional customer service from any location with an internet connection.

Kinetic IT’s AWS-based products

Kinetic IT’s AVA and CoPilot products are built using a serverless architecture on the AWS platform, and are currently deployed at customers including Qantas, St John, and Department of Justice.


AVA is a serverless, conversational AI solution developed by Kinetic IT using the AWS cloud platform. As an Automated Virtual Agent, AVA converses with people using voice or text via telephone. AVA can also perform a range of simple requests such as password resets, unlocking accounts, providing status updates, triaging incoming calls, transcribing voice recordings, and verifying the identity of a caller. It’s a 24/7, personalised service that has an incredible 99.99% resolution rate via chat.

AVA is an award-winning product used at customer accounts including Qantas, where the AVA completes requests such as identity verification and password resets. AVA has saved Qantas’ staff an average of 200 hours a month in waiting times. This means our human Service Centre agents have more time to perform more complex and high-value services and activities.

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CoPilot is a customisable Service Centre contact management solution that is built around the AWS platform. This cloud-based solution provides multichannel contact centre service through voice and chat and has a range of tools for intelligent, skills-based routing and queuing.

CoPilot features machine learning to automate call handling, authenticate callers, and analyse call quality and customer sentiment, plus real-time visibility of call queues and agent status and customer performance reporting. It all works to provide faster call resolution and removes friction for end-users dealing with their Service Centre.

Kinetic IT uses CoPilot at multiple customer accounts including the Department of Justice and St John Ambulance.

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Kinetic IT team at AWS GameDay

Careers in AWS

The cloud is booming. There are an enormous number of opportunities to work in cloud computing right now and understanding AWS is essential to working in this field. A recent AlphaBeta study commissioned by AWS found that the ability to use cloud-based tools will be the most in-demand skill required by employers by 2025.

Events like the AWS GameDay are a great entry-level opportunity to start learning about the AWS skillset and the different technologies in that suite, including database, storage, app development, chatbots, and more.

Kinetic IT currently has over 50 AWS-certified crew members and we’re always encouraging more crew to kickstart or boost their careers in cloud development. We provide our crew with opportunities to complete courses in AWS and attend events like the AWS GameDay. We also provide career pathway guidance so crew can map their careers in AWS and cloud development. You can find many entry-level jobs in cloud development that require AWS skills, such as a Junior Systems Engineer, AWS DevOps Engineer, Data Engineer, or Cloud Engineer.

Kinetic IT also offers a Mentoring Program where crew are matched with a colleague who can provide guidance, advice, and support in personal and career development. It’s all about building enduring relationships and providing developmental growth and opportunities for each other.

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AWS career advice

Domenic has this advice for anyone thinking about a career in AWS or cloud development:

“I would say two things:

1. Take advantage of the learning and certification that Kinetic IT allows though the use of Percipio (which has a lot of great AWS learning resources) and our AWS Partner benefits (for example, the certification program).

2. Get experience in AWS with their “Free Tier” offer. You can follow along with guides and a sample project and get experience in building and deploying applications in the cloud.”

Ready to shoot for the cloud? Head to the Kinetic IT careers page to find a range of current job opportunities in cloud services and more and take your career in IT to the next level. You can also head to our website to find out what it’s like to work with Kinetic IT, plus all the benefits of being part of our crew.

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