Area Vice President, Systems Engineering - Major Accounts

Systems Engineering Santa Clara, California Plano, Texas New York City, New York


Area Vice President, Systems Engineering - Major Accounts

The Area Vice President, Systems Engineering - Major Accounts reports to the Vice President of Systems Engineering for the Americas and partners directly with the Vice President of US Major Accounts to lead our team of US Major Accounts Accounts Systems Engineers (SE) who are the go-to technical experts assisting the sales team in generating growth.

The selected candidate will have the responsibility to oversee technical pre-sales operations and achieve revenue generation, individual, team, and organizational quotas.  The Area VP will also play a key role in driving strategic, enterprise-wide sales-related initiatives within our largest and most strategic accounts. It is expected that the Area VP can interact at a senior level with customers and partners and provide valuable insight into industry trends, customer challenges, technical evolutions, and business changes that will help the customer make their security decisions.  The optimal candidate already has a reputation with the customers and partners in the Area as a trusted advisor who will always take care of their needs.

Just like the rest of the SE team, this is a position that will require a business savvy individual with a strong background in security platform, application architecture, and sales coupled with a successful track record in team management.


  • Report and make visible the successes and deficiencies of the initiatives within your Area.
    • Metric-based results should be evident across all areas of focus. 
  • Develop and own outcome-oriented Systems Engineering initiatives that drive pipeline and sales with your AVP, RVPs, Systems Engineering Directors (SEDs), Systems Engineering Managers (SEMs), and SEs to drive greater efficiencies and success within the Area.  
  • Develop and evolve the technical sales organization and structure to meet the needs of our largest and most strategic customers
  • Develop and maintain strong relationships with Palo Alto Networks’ partners (reseller, distribution, system integrators, and alliances) and drive and measure initiatives to improve sales and Systems Engineering productivity through partner leverage
  • Drive portfolio sales into the Area’s account base and not just single products including:
    • Selling strategic emerging solutions within a broader portfolio
    • Leading portfolio expansion initiatives, with factual results upselling subscriptions and strategic solutions into existing accounts
  • Ensure that you, your SEDs, SEMs, and SEs:
    • Plan and architect compelling technical and business-focused solutions which drive adoption and growth after the initial sale and across the portfolio
    • Understand and articulate the key technical, operational, and commercial challenges faced by our prospects and customers that the Palo Alto Networks solution addresses
    • Build and maintain relationships with key customers in the territory to solidify reference accounts and to assist the account teams with defining plans to drive more business
    • Develop and maintain strong technical relationships with Palo Alto Networks’ partners (reseller, distribution, system integrators, and alliances) which improve sales productivity
  • Pristine personnel management – including demonstrated development plans and execution, reduced attrition results and initiatives, a clear history of promotions and success, etc.
  • Provide account support through SE assignments, load balancing, continuity, strategic planning with Sales management, Sales Reps, and SEs, and customer meetings including sales calls, relationship building, and problem resolution
  • Operate effectively in a matrix manner with extended teams, such as Support, Finance, WW SE, HR, Product Management and other relevant organizations.
  • Act as an escalation point for pre-sales and post-sales technical issues that arise in the territory.
  • Develop, mentor, manage and support the technical selling organization with technical and organizational leadership.
  • Manage successful evaluations and timely return of evaluation equipment


  • A minimum combination of 10 years of first, second, and third-line Systems Engineering management experience.
  • Possesses a combination of management, technical and business skills.  A challenger sales mentality and a fast-growing mindset are a must.
  • Proven experience managing Managers and Directors, not just individuals.
  • Industry knowledge of security product market trends and directional awareness of Palo Alto Network’s roadmap and technology development efforts. Knowledge of how to deliver comprehensive security solutions to Palo Alto Networks’ customer base, and maintains a general understanding of competitive selling strategies.
  • Comfortable presenting to both internal and external executive audiences.
  • Demonstrated experience in working directly with customers at senior levels within an organization, as well as working with industry partners and alliances
  • Possess the intellect and the executive presence to become a true business partner across functions.
  • 50-75% Travel.
  • An articulate, social individual that can translate a highly technical solution in simple business terms and develop relationships with decision-makers.
  • Highly commercial in orientation, with a strong focus on the customer and a clear commitment to generating topline growth
  • Leading by example, this individual, when necessary, will not hesitate to get into the details of the business
  • Self-driven: a highly autonomous individual that can lead a cross-functional project from the ground up and make things happen.
  • A decisive leader with a passion for the business and a real sense of urgency.
  • Strategic thinking: To plan and build and other sales and marketing leaders. There will also be a close collaboration with the product team.
  • This individual must be a forward thinker who is extremely focused and capable of creating an evolving strategy to meet and anticipate both near and long-term development issues.
  • Excellent communication skills: Equally comfortable talking with investors, employees, executive management team, customers and the board with an ability to translate complex issues into easily understood terms.
  • Impeccable character and high ethical standards.
  • Absolute integrity, honesty, intensity, and passion.