Tata Consultancy Services, Agile Coach
May 2013 - Present, Edison, New Jersey, United States
Agile Coach Sep 2015 - Present
Tata Consultancy Services North America
Client: AXA Insurance, Jersey City, NJ
• Agile Coach assisting agile adoption among multiple AXA teams with resources located in Jersey City, Syracuse, Charlotte and multiple locations in India.
• Directly reporting to COO on the Agile Process Transformation initiative
• Leading the initiative to restructure organization and other Enterprise wide changes to implement Agile methodologies
• Day to day activities include Coaching and hands-on training on the best practices of Role and responsibilities, Ceremonies, Artefacts
AXA Equitable Employee Benefits Program
Consulted and transformed the 7 team Employee Benefit program to successfully adopt Agile using Scrum methodology in a systematic manner seamlessly transforming the teams from waterfall to Agile using Scrum
• Planned and executed the end-end transformation
• Consulted on team composition, schedule and artefact management
• Conducted 2-day Workshop to Leadership, Business and IT teams
• Provided Hands-On training for 3 Sprints to the teams – served as an integral part
• Helped with the implementation of Continuous Integration and Continuous Deployment tools. Worked with the teams to help them deliver incrementally and iteratively
• Successfully brought about radical change in mindset among team members to be Agile.
AXA Salesforce Scrum and Kanban Teams
Consulted and transformed the 3 team Salesforce Program to successfully adopt Agile using Scrum and Kanban methodology.
• Analyzed and planned based on the nature of work done by the teams
• Work included small production support like items, enhancements to existing applications, and new Application development
• Formed teams accordingly and executed the end-end transformation
• Conducted a series of Coaching sessions to Leadership, Business and IT teams
• Provided Hands-On training on Tools and best practices
• Helped teams deliver incrementally and iteratively meeting the SLAs
• Successfully brought about a mindset transformation among team members to be agile.
Agile Coach Feb 2015 – Aug 2015
Tata Consultancy Services North America
Client: American International Group (AIG), Berkeley Heights, NJ
• Program Manager for the delivery and support for Third Party Administrator Information Repository (TPAIR) for US, Canada and UK, and a few deprecation projects
• Functioned as a Process Improvement specialist, effectively roll out of the Best Practices of Waterfall SDLC in a phased manner
• Delivered Quality Solutions and functionality on time within budget and improved the Program Management landscape
TPAIR US and TPAIR-Canada Projects - Support/Enhancement
• Functioned as the Process and Program lead for the 12 member team that was to support and enhance the TPAIR for US and Canada that was developed and implemented earlier
• Managed the end to end process starting from identifying the functional and performance enhancements, through prioritization, budgeting, and implementation rollout
• Collaborated with multiple Stakeholders from Upstream and Downstream systems to identify dependencies and to negotiate appropriate changes in each module
Process for the Delivery
• Worked with multiple stakeholders of the GELS (Global Evaluation of Loss Sensitivity) to implement the Best Practices of SDLC from concept to delivery of projects
• Proposed, rolled out, reviewed and customized a Standard Process that was uniform across the teams based on ITIL standards
• Served as the Program Manager to help manage the delivery of the projects under an overlapping and aggressive schedule.
Agile Coach Sept 2014- Feb 2015 Tata Consultancy Services North America
Client: Prudential Group Insurance, Roseland, NJ
• Project Manager and Process Lead for delivering the Service Account Assessment project to meet SOX Compliance standards
• Pioneered the efforts to create a Service Account Inventory for all the GI owned applications
• Designed a Governance Process for the Service Account Management
Service Account Inventory
• Functioned as the Process/Technical Lead for a 2 member team to deliver from scratch the Service Account Inventory under an aggressive schedule to meet the Audit deadline.
• Worked with Business Information Security Officer (BISO), internal and external Auditors to define and ensure that the scope of the project met the Business, Regulatory and Compliance objectives
• Coordinated with multiple teams within and outside of GI to run reports to identify the Service Accounts distributed across UNIX Windows and Database servers and applications
• Worked with 60 Application teams and finalize the list of Service Accounts associated with each Application
• Gathered all the mandated details of each Service Account and completed the Inventory
The Inventory had a final count of 1250 Service Accounts that were active and owned by GI.
• In the process, added new Service Accounts, removed duplicate accounts, filled out the missing details and updated the incorrect/outdated details for each Service Account.
Service Account Management Governance Process
• There was no Governance Process in place. Worked with multiple stakeholders to design the process from concept to delivery.
• Interviewed the BISO, Auditors and Application Owners to gather their suggestions
• Proposed a customized Governance Process based on ITIL framework and SOX Compliance standards that was operational
• Reviewed, revised and finalized the Service Account Governance Process that was in line with ITIL Framework, met SOX Compliance standards and stakeholder needs
• Managed the project singlehandedly, from concept to delivery under an aggressive schedule.
Agile Coach May 2013- Aug 2014
Tata Consultancy Services North America
Client: CIGNA, Bloomfield, CT
• Helped transform the existing ‘team level Agile practices’ to Enterprise level Portfolio/Program Management based on Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe)
• Coached Agile teams, mentoring Product Owners, Scrum Masters, Analysts, Developers and Testers, to adopt the Best Practices of Agile in an Onsite-Offshore setting
• Conducted User Story workshops, Techniques and Tips sessions for the teams, constantly guiding them based on their unique team needs.
• Designed, developed, refined and rolled out a Kanban process for Test Data Management team – the first of its kind in Cigna.
Scaled Agile Framework Transformation
• Actively contribute to transform 2 Cigna business units to scale Agile to the Enterprise level based on SAFe implementing complete Portfolio, Program and Project Management
• Helped create Agile Release Trains (ART) to synchronize team backlogs and manage dependencies
• Monitored the progress and changes to the ART and mitigated risks and resolved issues
• Introduced Agile-Lean best practices across the enterprise smoothly and seamlessly
• Coordinated with Clients and partners to build cross functional teams; moved resources around to mitigate risks and issues arising out of globally distributed teams from multiple competing vendors, outsourced partners and third party system vendors working in an onsite-offshore model
• Coached teams to deliver consistently at a sustained pace and setting Quality standards
• Facilitated the Biweekly Scrum of Scrums and Weekly Scrum Master Roundtable meetings to get feedback and suggest improvements to enhance performance
• Help Scrum Masters facilitate Sprint Review and Retrospective meeting and to follow up on the action items identified.
• Functioned as the Scrum Master for the Financial Integration team whose main deliverable was to build Integration Layers that would enable seamless financial data flow from the disparate Third Party systems and the Internal processing, customer support, data warehouse and metrics systems for Individual and Family plans
• Coached and mentored a 10 member team with members distributed across the US and India, on an onsite-Offshore model from 2 competing vendors.
• Introduced effective incremental and iterative development, automated testing and deployment.
• Coordinated with the vendor managers, partner companies and client managers to effectively plan and deliver the committed to functionalities encouraging change in the functionality throughout the release cycle
Next Gen Desktop Gadgets
• Scrum master for the High tech team that set out to build reusable components for the NEXTGEN Desktop; prime features included infinite scrolling, customizable dashboards, customizable page navigation and an evolving set of customizable gadgets for Cigna Business users
• Challenge was around the changing requirements and the backlog included considerable amount of Spike stories
• Direction changed with each Sprint forcing the team to function with copybook style agility stretching the agile-lean principles to its limits
• Delivered the Desktop with customizable gadgets in the specified time with a lot more functionality and technology that were by no means envisioned at the beginning of the project
Kanban Process for Test Data Management
• Mapped the existing process for Test Data Management
• Coached and mentored the team on Kanban principles and its suitability to the existing Test Data Management process
• Conceived and iteratively designed Kanban queues to help visualize flow
• Implemented Kanban in Jira customizing it to better reflect reality
• Coached team on roles, responsibilities and artefacts of Kanban framework
• Served as the Agile Expert, prepared and presented Kanban to Agile Consistency Program team of Cigna and gained approval to implement the process
• Rolled out the Kanban process and systematically refined it.
• The Kanban process was designed, developed, refined and delivered for effective implementation in an Onsite-Offshore model which has proved to be very successful creating a win-win situation for CIGNA and TCS
Kaplan Test Prep and Admissions, Senior Project Manager / Scrum Master
May 2011 - August 2012, New York, New York, United States
Agile Project Manager/Scrum Master May 2011- Dec 2012
Kaplan Inc., New York, NY
•Part of the Agile Centre of Excellence team to migrate the IT and Kaplan Business teams to adopt Agile best practices.
•Scrum Master for the Business Intelligence (Data Warehouse & Reporting) and Core Web Services teams, delivering projects to enterprise wide IT/Business teams.
•Performed Agile Management / Leadership activities high-profile individuals and teams to embrace Agile seamlessly.
•Provided expert guidance to form cross-functional teams of diverse skillsets and functions to self-organize effectively.
•Helped Business Product owners to create and manage roadmaps, release and sprint backlogs; constantly and consistently convincing them of the Agile values of increment and iterative delivery.
•Coordinated with Business teams and organized, scheduled and facilitated User Story Workshops to create stories with varied level of details for Roadmaps, Release Backlog and Sprint Backlogs.
•Helped Product Owners with the prioritization and maintenance of Backlogs in time for the Sprint Planning meeting
•Coached teams with Story estimation techniques and embrace them without apprehension whatsoever.
•Introduced and implemented Information Radiators like Sprint Scrum Board, Release and Sprint Burn-down charts, Velocity, for all the teams.
•Help Scrum Masters facilitate Sprint Review and Retrospective meeting and to follow up on the action items identified.
Scrum Master for Data Warehouse and Web Services teams
•Functioned as the Scrum Master for the Pilot teams in implementing Agile Practices.
•Facilitated Sprint Planning, Daily Standup, Backlog Grooming, Sprint Review, Sprint Retrospective meetings
•Facilitated Backlog Grooming Meetings with Product Owners and selected team members to update and prepare the Sprint Backlog for iteration planning.
•Organized and lead the Sprint planning meetings; encouraged discussions among team members so that stories were clearly understood and scoped, estimated stories using story points with sizing them whenever necessary, tasked them out, and ensured overall transparency, accuracy and consistency in maintained.
•Estimated stories using Story Points and helped teams with the estimation using Planning Poker.
•Facilitated the Daily Standup Meeting and used it effectively to help protect the team from distractions and interruptions, to remove roadblocks/impediments and to impact empowerment and productivity.
•Created and maintained the Scrum Board as an information radiator to track progress of the sprint.
•Lead the Sprint Review /Demo Meeting; Presented Sprint Metrics and Release trends that included Velocity, Cumulative Flow Diagrams, Burn-down charts, to encourage teams maintain a sustainable pace.
•Sent out individual invitations to Business teams’ representatives in addition to the general agenda to ensure proper attendance for completed story review and signoff.
•Maintained the teams’ Wiki pages; Folders for each Sprint containing Sprint Metrics, Story details, Review presentation and charts – for cross team visibility and collaboration and to manage inter-team dependencies.
•Ensured team follows meticulously all workflow steps like Architecture approval, code review, test case automation and documentation completed for every story.
•Updated the Enterprise level Wiki; Changes to architecture design and database tables, addition to the Test Case and Web Services Repository.
Hewlett Packard at State New Jersey Motor Vehicles Commission, , Lead Business Analyst - Forms, Reports, Correspondence, Documents
June 2009 - April 2011, Trenton, NJ, United States
Lead for the development of Web Forms, Reports, Paper and email correspondence, Documents and Contracts across all Motor Vehicles Commission Business modules.
Re-engineered the existing legacy processes and systems to the latest web based techology.
Reports: Reengineered over 1500 reports, 200 Forms, 45 Douments/Contracts/Agreements, and 75 correspondences. Delivered 200 Reports, 100 forms, 50 contracts and 64 emails that could be accessed/delivered/downloaded online.
Delta Dental of Virginia, Senior Business Systems Analyst / Project Manager / Scrum Master
May 2008 - April 2009, Roanoke, Virgina, United States
•Performed the functions of a Business Analyst in a fully functional Agile-Scrum SDLC, to redesign, enhance and customize DCS2000 – in-house dental insurance administration software for Delta Dental of Virginia, Kentucky and Arkansas.
•Later functioned as Scrum Master for bringing aboard a new client – Delta Dental of Colorado, that involved a complete release spanning 12 scrum iterations.
Electronic Data Interchange
•The project was to integrate DCS2000 with Mercury Data Exchange, a clearinghouse; the tasks were the migration to 4010A1 norms, secure data transfer functionality for eligibility enquiry and response, predetermination, claims submission and remittance processing.
Electronic Funds Transfer
•The project was to automate the process of generating invoices and collecting premiums from Risk Groups and admin fees from Administrative Services Groups. Payments were drafted through ACH.
•This project saved nearly 1000 man-hours of back office work /month.
•Created an estimated $200,000/year in saving by automating the process of payment to providers through ACH.
•Realized an 85% reduction in time taken to pay providers after the receipt of claims.
Provider Notification of Overpayment and Recovery
•The task was to automate the process of notifying Providers of overpayment and recovery.
Client Knowledge Reporting
•A reporting web application was developed in ASP.net and SQL backend which included 27 reports.
•Analyzed data sets from multiple data sources (SQL Server 2005, and Oracle 9i and 10g), defined unique related datasets for advanced reporting. Used LDAP to manage the provision of access to the report, among Group Administrators, Brokers, Subscribers, Providers and Internal Users.
•Helped produce and provide estimates, schedules and status reports during two releases – Orange 08, Maroon 09.
•Conducted interviews with business users/stakeholders from Colorado, Virginia, Kentucky and Arkansas, to gather requirements for customization and enhancement.
•Analyzed all the clients’ requirements, compiled them, determined deltas with the existing functionality and developed generic customized enhancement requirements to meet the needs of all of them.
•Created work flow diagrams, process diagrams and design documents using UML notation in MS Visio.
•Conducted Joint Application Design sessions with developers to define project scope and functionality.
•Created and managed BRD, FDD and User stories;
•Worked with Benefit Services Department and analyzed the number of calls registered on each product. Helped reduce the number of calls by 35% (Improvement realized over a 6 months period).
Government College of Technology, Project Manager - Doctoral Research Program
August 2001 - April 2007, Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu, India
• Established a research facility to gain approval to conduct research program for PhD degree.
• Independently managed and reported the progress of the first two batches of research students from enrollment to award of degree per University norms.
•Created a detailed project proposal, complete with initial and ongoing resource requirements
•Gathered and implemented all requirements during the entire life cycle of accreditation process meticulously adhering to Government procedures and University norms.
•Worked with multiple disciplines, customized projects modules, and multiple teams in a Government environment.
•Defined complete scope of the individual project modules through interactions with research supervisors, scholars and Government officials.
•Resolved conflicts arising from the diversity of disciplines and through detailed scheduling in phases of individual projects based on supervisor, student and institution overall interest.
•Effectively proposed for distribution of funds allotted in a phased manner for the subscription of journals, participation in conferences, organizing guest lectures/workshops.
•Developed and maintained precise documentation of lessons learned for future preventive and corrective actions.
•Helped establish a fully functional research coordination cell, new research centers in individual engineering and science departments and developed a software application for enrollment/approval of research supervisors, admission/enrollment of research scholars, with ability to tracking their progress.
Mettur Thermal Power Plant, Project Manager / Research Analyst
October 2002 - August 2004, Mettur, Tamil Nadu, India
•Created mathematical and analytical models for real time power generation process
•Designed artificial intelligence based PID controllers for the process
Superheated Steam Temperature control Process
•This project involved creation of mathematical and analytical models for the 210MW turbine's Superheated Steam temperature control process from real time data collected.
•Created ARX, Artificial Neural Networks, and ANFIS models using Genetic Algorithm and Simulated Annealing, Symbolic Computation and Artificial intelligence concepts.
•Managed a team of 12 for approximately 1 year; researched and analyzed the existing real time processes, information systems, and their future direction.
•Provided recommendations for enhanced system modeling to facilitate better understanding of the processes.
•Identified time and costs pertaining to the recommended modeling solution.
•Prepared reports and graphs related to operational costs, utilization trends and forecasting using corporate database.
•Managed a high profile dynamic team of Masters and research scholars effectively utilizing their diverse skills.
•Facilitated the training through carefully designed courses to enable the scholars to gain expertise required to apply the latest trends.
•Performed various analyses and constantly rescheduled activities to meet the demands of the team and the business.
Government College of Engineering, Project Manager/Infrastructure Establishment
August 1997 - August 2001, Bargur, Tamil Nadu, India
•Established AC and DC Electrical Machinery, Power Electronics, Microprocessor and Computer Laboratories for the Electrical and Electronics Engineering Department
Electrical Engineering Department: Infrastructure Establishment Manager
The requirement was to establish new Engineering Laboratories at the new Campus at Bargur. Tasks included planning, procurement, installation and commissioning of all the machinery / equipment, hardware and software, in compliance with Government norms.
•Studied and assessed the Government systems and business processes
•Performed requirement analysis, and meticulously designed various procurement documents for vendor management.
•Participated in project planning and implementation scheduling meetings with Public Works Department officials and College authorities throughout the project life cycle.
•Worked in accordance with project plans and scope effectively adapting to changes.
•Functioned as the primary liaison between the Government funding authorities, vendors, and over-sight team throughout the project cycle.
•Helped Project Manager in the procurement, installation, commissioning and handing over of all machinery and equipment
•Actively involved in the planning and utilization of huge government funds effectively, using all cost refundable, time and materials and fixed price contracts.
•The completion of the project on schedule facilitated the shifting of the college to the new campus on time.