vSenior Agile Coach & Transformation Lead
** ***** ************** *********** (guiding the transformation of over 1000 teams)
Canada's first IT Executive of the Year in 2002
Lean Master Black Belt
14 Awards for Technology Innovation & Leadership
32 years as a technology change agent and team builder inspiring teams to unite in dreaming big, to challenge the norm, and to create spectacular results like building 3 of the world’s largest and most advanced highspeed telehealth/research networks: OTN, ACORN, and ORION.
15 years leading Agile transformations, promoting the adoption of Agile principles, extreme ownership, psychological safety, continuous improvement, and the striving for worthwhile causes that has allowed many IT departments to more than double their effectiveness in delivering business value, including a 500% increase at WhiteRyder, 400% increase at Delta Health, 200% increase at Blue Cross.
LICENSES & CERTIFICATIONS
Agile Certified Coach (ICP-ACC) - ICAgile, 2015
Certified Scrum Professional (CSP) - Scrum Alliance, 2014
Certified Scrum Product Owner (CSPO) - Scrum Alliance, 2013
Certified Scrum Master (CSM) - Scrum Alliance, 2013
Certified Master Black Belt (MBB) - FedEx, 1992
Project & Portfolio Management - FedEx, 1990
Agile Coach XP Scrum DevOps Change Management
Scrum Master BDD/FDD/TDD Kanban Git/Selenium Continuous Improvement
Product Owner Test Automation SAFe Jenkins/Puppet Continuous Integration
Rel Train Eng Pair Programming LeSS Java/Python Lean Thinking
Agile Trainer Maturity Assessment Scrum@Scale jQuery/CSS Design Thinking
Agile Coach / Consultant TCS Salt Lake City, UT 1/2018 – Present
Agile Team Coach – Provided Agile coaching and direction to the Mechanical and Electrical Engineering teams. These are non-software development teams that operate a scaled Agile model with 1-week Scrums for product enhancements and nested Kanban processes for support tasks. The teams support Zebra’s high profile MotionWorks RFID player tracking system, a system being developed and used in professional sports such as the NFL.
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA):
Agile Consultant – Worked with the TCS sales team and the Chrysler IT Management to identify Chrysler’s Agile transformation needs and to develop an Agile Transformation Strategic Plan. Lead a sample 7-week engagement to bring up 4 teams.
InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG):
Senior Agile Coach – Coached nine ETL/ELT Data Integration teams in adopting Agile. Developed eight custom, online training classes, to bring TCS’s 450 developers assigned to IHG, up to speed on how IHG was using Agile, Scrum, Kanban, and Rally.
Tata Consultancy Services (TCS):
Agile Trainer – Developed a series of online and classroom training material for TCS sales and managers on Agile and DevOps basics, including an 80-page guide for IT executives, on the basis, of planning for an Agile/DevOps transformation. Training also included Lean tools, change management, contracting in an Agile environment, value stream mapping, and using a multilevel base camp transformation model.
Senior Agile Coach - Working with a team of 20+ Agile coaches, assigned to stand up 450 teams that supported 7 organizations within Chase. Assisted in developing the engagement model, including objectives, metrics, and standards. Facilitated in the creation of training and coaching tools for use during and beyond the coaching engagement. Implemented several tools to launch, track, and assess the effectiveness of Agile coaching and the adoption of Agile by the teams, programs, and lines of business. Primary assignment was to work with 2 other coaches to support 153 teams within 2 lines of business, including transforming 27 teams. Advised the CTO on ways to improve the adoption of Agile.
Outperforming all other teams in the 2018 Q2, Q3, and Q4 agile maturity assessments.
Implementing a scaled model, based on a hybrid of SAFe, LeSS, and Scrum @ Scale.
Creating a series of training videos, support documents, and monitoring tools to support continuous training and ongoing support once the coaching engagement ended.
Developed an Agile coaching tracker to help the coaches and teams build a coaching plan.
Agile Coach / Consultant Tucker Agile Partners Salt Lake City, UT 10/2013 – 12/2017
Worked on various assignments, helping organizations perfect their Agile transformation, including:
Strategic Planning - Working with Senior Development Management, including CIOs and CTOs, to:
Established Agile visions to guide organizations through their Agile transformations and beyond.
Instilled an appetite for continuous improvement and collaboration to guide the organization through its initial Agile transformation and to ensure that the transformation continued after my departure.
Created scaled Agile strategic transformation plans, based on the organizations’ Agile objectives and needs, constraints, readiness, resources, and appetite.
Guided organizations through their Lean-Agile Transformation, from the process and organizational re-engineering, through Agile adoption and culture-shifting, and beyond to Agile sustaining and risk management, including establishing training content, tracking, metrics and a host of other tools.
Helped select and train Agile managers, coaches, Scrum Masters, and Product Owners.
Mentored and coached Agile managers as they implemented their Agile strategic transformation.
Help companies use JIRA, RTC, TFS, and CA Agile Central (Rally).
Guided teams in adopting DevOps and Test Automation with tools such as Puppet, Chef, Jenkins, Quality Center, ALM, Selenium, and Cucumber.
Stood-up Teams, ARTs, and Tribes - working under the direction of the PMO office and the Agile manager to stand-up various teams including:
Groups of Scrum and Kanban (some mainframe) Teams working together as program tribes.
SAFe Agile Release Trains with multiple Scrum teams.
Standalone Scrum and Kanban teams.
DevOps teams, systems teams, shared services teams, sustaining engineering teams, and coordinating teams.
Focused Coaching - provided coaching and training to specialized groups beyond the development teams, including Product Managers / Product Owners, Project Managers, Business Managers, Sales, Implementation, and IT Operations. Using tools such as Pega’s DCO, Pragmatic Marketing, Feature Vision Documents, Earned Value Projection Reports, Team Trackers, Agile Maturity Assessment Radars, Story Boarding & Road Mapping, Business Value Calculators and many other tools to help leaders improve their efficiency and effectiveness in adopting an Agile mindset.
DevOps, XP & Beyond – Beyond the basic, coached teams and organizations in getting started and in maturing in more advanced agile related areas including, developing strategies and providing hands-on coaching and training in using many XP practices, Dual Path Agile, Design Thinking, Test Automation, Project Management in Agile, Lean tools, Team/Program Design with T-Skills & Gingerbread modeling.
Contracted to conduct an Agile Maturity assessment and to make transformation recommendations, which led to a significant overhaul of development and to a lesser degree business. The overhaul included moving from a scrum model to a scaled model based on LeSS, Spotify, and Lean principles that included both scrum and Kanban teams. The selection of an Agile Manager and coaches to ensure the ongoing success of the Agile transformation.
The transformation was a great success and is now being adopted by HighMark, United Concordia’s parent company.
Guardian Life Insurance
Converted several short-lived project teams, made up of internationally distributed team members who often set on 4 or more teams, into a more effective Agile environment.
Used story maps and project roadmaps to identify and create effective project baselines and release objectives.
Worked with the in-house coaches to transform a semi-functional Agile program (value stream) into a more effective unit, based on SAFe 4.0. Helped develop a strategy and implementation plan to create Agile Release Trains and a shared DevOps services team.
Set up continuous integration, test-driven-design, and test automation communities of practice to help the value stream move closer to achieving the goal of continuous integration.
Coached a group of struggling Product Managers, Product Owners, and Solution Architects to prepare for an upcoming program increment (PI) event.
Coached the product team in several techniques and tools to help them prepare and split capabilities/features into backlog items that were ready for the PI event, including feature injection, story mapping, functional decomposition, technical decomposition, and using a Capabilities Vision Document to capture details from ongoing conversations.
Worked with the development management team to develop an Agile transformation strategy to help resolve issues in meeting enhancement expectations, dependencies, and inconsistencies between what was expected and what was delivered. Coached scrum masters, product managers, and the IT leadership team in understanding and implementing Agile and Lean principles. Worked with the scrum masters and team coaches to coach the teams in their Agile transformation.
Stood-up several Agile project teams made up of newly hired contractors that would be around for the term of the projects, usually 6 to 9 months. The assignment included providing Agile training, guidance, and mentoring through Sprint Zero (3 weeks) and then coaching the Scrum Masters, Delivery Managers, and Product Owners through the next several sprints.
Managed the enterprise product vision for several multi-tenant SaaS applications at various stages in the product lifecycle, overseeing a team of product owners and business analysts to produce the industry’s leading full-solution home healthcare products according to KLASS. Overall product adoption growth from under 10K users to over 40K users.
Coached both the product office and development team in moving from a team centered Agile shop to a scaled Agile shop, using SAFe 2.0 and a more Pragmatic Marketing approached to user requirements gathering, built on a Lean foundation.
Served as the product owner and lead ETL/ELT data modeler for HL7, EDI, XML, and Integration Engine stories, including AI/BI, EDI, and EHR/HIE mapping and integration.
CTO WhiteRyder Toronto, Canada 03/2005 - 10/2013
A member of the senior management team responsible for application development and digital solutions.
Introduced and led the Agile transformation, based on Large Scale Scrum (LeSS); that in time included DevOps, Test-Driven Development (TDD), test automation, and various XP principles.
Encouraged the use of Lean Waste Reduction principles in the Agile transformation, which resulted in a 500% increase in development and IT operations efficiency, while cutting the annual operating budget by 20%.
Guided the selection and implementation of redundant and resilient IT solutions, including the use of Amazon AWS Cloud Computing Services.
Implemented an Agile change management process that was linked to a two-tiered business value prioritization and justification process.
Developed a three-tiered 24x7 multi-tenanted Mobile / Cloud strategy for the Home Healthcare sector:
-Tier 1 - Using personal iPhone/Android phones in real-time, Home Care Aids/CNAs completed visit reports and timesheets, accessed updated care plans, and enabled redeployment as needed to minimize downtime and ensure clients' changing needs were met.
-Tier 2 - Using agency supplied enterprise Android tablets, the RNs, Specialists, and Supervisors were able to access and update client records (including electronic health records), conduct assessments, and provide online feedback to family members while supporting the needs of distant Home Care Aids and CNAs.
-Tier 3 - Web-based legacy and client-side SaaS applications that allowed 24 x 7 online access by staff to document, receive training, manage schedules, and update care plans and with 24 x 7 clients/family online access to viewing/update client information via the client/family portal.
Vice President, ICT Acadia University Halifax, Canada 03/2004 - 03/2005
Named Canada's innovative university-12 years running, a laureate of the Smithsonian Institution for its leadership in using technology as a new model for delivering education.
Developed a 5-year strategic plan to restore Acadia to the forefront of technology in education, which included building strategic alliances with key business partners, such as IBM, Intel, and Microsoft, to:
-Ensure that Acadia’s data center, hardware, and applications where state of the art solutions and running at optimum efficiency.
-Expand the use of technology into the public-school system.
-Provide resources, funding, and networking to advance the use of technology in delivering education.
-Host partner fly-ins, to promote the use of technology in delivering education.
Established a $75 million - 10-year fund to expand the use of technology within the university.
Built a vision and support for a second regional GigaPOP research network, the Atlantic Canada Organization of Research Networks (ACORN).
Facilitated the creation of a dedicated fiber-optic-color-band network that allowed Oscar Peterson to teach his students in real-time, across thousands of miles, using linked acoustic pianos.
Brought teacher and technology thought leaders together from around the world to explore ways to use technology to enhance teaching in k-12 and higher education.
Director / CIO Baycrest Health Science Center Toronto, Canada 07/1999 – 03/2004
Co-authored and implemented a 5-year, $14 million, IM Strategy that transformed a dysfunctional IT team and fragile infrastructure into a model of best practices. CompTIA, the Computing Technology Industry Association, was so impressed with our transformation and use of technology, that they had me write various stories about what we were doing, which they published in several magazines. They had me speak at conferences and gatherings across North America and lectures at universities. When Computing Canada decided to implement a program to recognize Canada's most effective IT leader, I was chosen as the first "Canadian IT Executive of the Year.”
Created a vision and support for one of the world’s largest telemedicine networks, the Ontario Telemedicine Network (OTN), and provided direction and support for a regional GigaPOP network, the Ontario Research and Innovation Optical Network (ORION).
Developed leading-edge telehealth, virtual clinics, that allowed clinicians to conduct remote assessments with patients half away around the world, in the far north, in mid-Atlantic, and just down the hall, using pre-internet cellphones.
Developed one of the first virtual grand rounds that qualified as CME credits for physicians.
Hosted, what was called the most distributed live class at the time, the 2000 Geriatric Nurse Specialist Certification program. The class reached participants on three continents, including participants located in the Arctic Circle. The class was offered live in multiple languages via ISDN telehealth lines, the internet, and standard phone lines with prerecorded contents on CDs.
Deep cleaned a datacenter contaminated by zinc whiskers, including disassembling and washing 300+ appliances, replaced dropped ceiling and raised floor tiles, washed and painted all walls, subfloor, and super ceiling. Working with a 90 day lead time, and a team of almost 50 professionals, the datacenter was cleaned in one continuous 48 hour period. Subsequently published guidelines for cleaning zinc whisker contamination in data centers, and provided support to NASA in addressing zinc whisker contamination within their data center.
Sr Project Manager TKS Solutions Toronto 1994 – 1999
Directed and coordinated the migration of multiple JD Edward’s ERP projects.
Developed a leading-edge data center and infrastructure for a 300-student MBA program operated by McMaster University. The school was one of the most advanced and complex of its kind, designed to create IT consultants with specialization in one of three areas, application integration and development, project management, or risk assessment and auditing.
Working with a $2 million budget and against an impossible timeline (90 days) that included design, sourcing, implementation, and testing of over 100 servers (including OS390, CISC, MVS, UNIX, and windows), a PBX with 300 handsets, 600 desktops, and printers. With the spirit of Scotty from Star Trek, we gave it all we had, and we found temporary and alternative solutions: I.E. OS390 was emulated on RS6000 & AS400; potable air-conditioning units, design for large passenger planes, were used to keep the data center cool; and a used PBX was install to support the telephony needs. In the end, the project was operational, but far from complete in time for the first class. The datacenter supported 32 OSs, OC3 data & voice sharing, a host of security solutions, and much more.
Quantum Information Resources
$3 million, 2-year consolidation merger of 22 sites (7 acquisitions), and over 1200 users into a primary datacenter (Toronto) and 2 regional centers (Montréal and Atlanta). The primary datacenter supported N+1 redundancy throughout with full environmental controls.
Automate billing with artificial intelligence and Boolean logic that received and converted faxes (from a fax server farm) into data that was then automatically processed to produce upload files for ADP payroll and People Soft, while it also produced the invoices on the DocuCentre for mailing. In the end, this system freed up 2 FTEs and cut DSOs from 70+ days to the mid-’50s.
$1 million budget to connect and consolidate six branches with about 300 desktops into a single data center that ran JD Edwards, other client-server applications, and central storage. Each office operated with a local caching, proxy, file, and print servers. The data center supported advance security, centralized management, smart UPS and CRAC, Backup Exec tape library with distribution by VPN and CISCO switches.
$1 million to set up a North American corporate datacenter with JD Edwards and Hyperion that was connected to the parent site in the UK and a production office in the Philippines. The site supported an AS400 server and a small 20 Intel server farm. The data center supported a smart UPS and CRAC, Backup Exec tape library, and monitored by CA Uncenter. Distribution was by HP hubs and CISCO switches.
$3 million, 2-year project to migrate a “green-screen” SYS38 MRP to a JDE ERP with a 200 PC LAN, served by dual AS400 servers and a small 50 HP Intel server farm that housed Lotus Notes, ccMail, file sharing, EDI Portal and various client-server solutions such as KANBAN & Micro Maintenance with a Sybase backend. The datacenter supported a smart UPS and CRAC, Backup Exec tape library, and monitored by HP OpenView. Distribution was by HP hubs and switches.
Assisted in several smaller projects, including data center projects for Central Mortgage, PolyDesign, and Magna Automotive.
Sr Manager Regulatory Affairs Federal Express Toronto 1988 – 1994
Hired while in school, as a programmer but within 6 months, was promoted to be the Senior Manager of Regulatory Affairs, responsible for supporting the regulatory clearance process, including billing, disputes, quality, and the automation and perfection of the clearance and supporting operations, through a series of projects. At the same time, the use of technology grew from a few standalone PCs to a national and international network of computers with multiple interfaces to the corporate mainframe, with external connections via EDI VANs to clients and regulatory offices and a state of the art datacenter with 100+ servers.
Using business intelligence, was able to develop a pre-arrival process to identify smuggled and undervalued goods, that was substantially far more effective then thee manual process used by the regulatory officers. The process led to FedEx being able to pre-clear shipments in time for them to deliver the same day. Thus allowing FedEx to offer “Absolutely, Positively, Overnight” delivery outside the USA.
Developed an automated clearing process, that replaced over 100 clearance specialist with two clerks, who were able to pre-clear 10,000 shipments a day. The system used a custom-built artificial intelligence process to calculate the duties and taxes, based on previous and similar shipments.
“…Through your (Stephen) outstanding achievements … your leadership, your enthusiasm, and your determination you have allowed us (FedEx) to move forward more rapidly, more strongly than ever before….”
Fred Smith, CEO & Founder Federal Express
Dir Ocean Freight Forwarding Canadian Pacific Toronto 1982 – 1986
Responsible for the Atlantic Region ocean freight forwarding of one of the world’s largest transportation and logistics companies. Previously the branch manager of an inland trans-border custom’s clearance operation.
Clackamas Community College Technology 2010 – 2013
Nova Scotia Community College Web Application Development 2005 – 2007
Dalhousie University Computer Science 1986 – 1988
“Stephen is very conceptual with extremely strong technical skills; he is extremely result
oriented with a passion for speed…” Computing Canada, IT Executive of the Year