Brett Ferguson

  

Owner, Rebel Consulting Services

Location: Kansas City, MO / USA

816-777-6721

Certifications

Certified ScrumMaster

Groups I belong to

Kansas City Agile & Scrum Group

Biography

Brett Ferguson

I set out in my life to be a rock star.  When I realized that wasn't going to happen, I forged my way into life as a corporate code slinger.  Along the way I came to realize figuring out people was more interesting (and challenging) than figure out code.  So, I set my sights on a leadership role.  Through BSA, BA, and PM, I eventually found my way into a technology manager position...and then development manager, qa manager, customer relationship manager, support manager, back to dev manager, and now as an independent consultant providing technical and project management services predominantly in the financial services industry. 

Although I had been exposed to XP early in my career, it wasn't until I was introduced to SCRUM that I really understood what it means to lead...to be a servant leader.  SCRUM, therefore, launched my leadership career by first showing me how to support, encourage, and nurture a team - and then permitting me to do so. 

 

Work experience

Rebel Consulting Services, Owner/Consultant
April 2013 - Present, Kansas City, Missouri, United States
Performing in ScrumMaster (and Project Manager) role on three large-scale projects for a large mutual fund company. The first effort is a transformational effort, which impacts the compensation, structure, and general business model for a field organization of 1,700 financial advisors in a 75 year old company. Although the work is mostly definitive, given the complexity and critical nature, I am running this as a SCRUM effort. The second of these efforts is aimed at decommissioning a legacy, highly customized Siebel instance where data and functionality are being ported over to other systems while interim UI's may have to be built to fill gaps. Currently, I am running this as Kanban for there haven't been any new-build needs identified to-date. The third effort, related to retiring the Siebel instance, moves all recruiting functions (data, workflow, artifacts, reporting, etc.) into Microsoft Dynamics xRM in the cloud, and again impacts the larger field organization as the new advisor recruitment workflow touches the field organization as well. This is a SCRUM effort given the need to clarify priority and need, and to respond to changes. There are also some outstanding issues from the first phase of this longer-term effort which are being folded into the backlog/prioritization effort. These efforts are comprised of large, complex teams of both internal and external resources, navigating complex (and bureaucratic) organizational structures, and dealing with predominantly legacy systems. These three efforts comprise approximately $3M of the portfolio spend on IT work.

DST Systems, Development Manager
March 2008 - August 2012, Kansas City, Missouri, United States
Responsible for implementing SCRUM in DST Brokerage Solutions/Subaccounting vertical. Built standalone teams in the US(2) and Bangkok(2) and co-dependent teams in India(2). Mainframe, Java, Flex environment. Rolled out daily email SCRUM tips to keep the practice components, ceremonies, principals, and stories in front of everyone the organization. It was during the implementation here at DST that I finally realized SCRUM is more than a development practice change, it is an organizational change and deserves to be treated as such.

H&R Block, Development Manager
August 2006 - February 2008, Kansas City, Missouri, United States
Implemented SCRUM in Architecture & Engineering/Tools team and across the Digital Tax organization. Microsoft .NET stack (XAML, Visual Studio extensibility, WCF, TFS, etc.). Built co-located environment with Tech Leads/Architects in US, developers in Russia, QA in India.