Working in IT for more than two decades has brought me great exposure to many technology projects of varying degrees of scale, cost and complexity. I consider myself to have worked alongside and been taught by the best and have been privileged to have worked on, and even project managed, some of the finest technology projects around. I have worked to both PRINCE2, of which I am certified in, and Agile methodologies. This is in addition to over two decades of solid Internet, security, and various other competencies.
Working within the agile framework, I was the technical lead working at this B2B electricity supplier on the migration of a £100M/month line-of-business billing platform (comprising Linux, Oracle and Windows) from on premise to a highly available and secure AWS environment (including Amazon EC2, EBS, VPC, Route 53 and CloudWatch services).
I was also responsible for the delivery of many technology projects including the implementation of a pioneering DR solution using scalable cloud and VDI technologies, and the implementation of System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) 2012 for management of the organisations vast computer estate.
I project managed a team to deliver this FTSE 250 financial media companies next generation hosting platform capable of carrying its online media services beyond the lifespan of its existing environment and for many years beyond. This involved both a migration and on-the-fly transformation, since the operating system and applications were also end-of-life and in desperate need of attention.
The project included contract procurement (thorough a comprehensive ITT process) with a value of £10M+. Major project deliverables included:
- Increase reliability through the provision of high availability throughout the design, removing all single points of failure to diminish the risk of reputational damage and commercial loss caused by unplanned service downtime
- Significantly overcome legacy performance issues and provided a uniform experience for international audiences, with future options for emerging markets
- Introduction of separate environments for development, testing and UAT in addition to production to deliver website enhancements to the audience quicker and with fewer errors
- Hardware abstraction for improved agility, scalability and reliability coupled with the ability to utilise cloud infrastructure to burst into as required (such as seasonal demand, product launches, etc.)
- Migrate all 300 undocumented websites and services to the new platform and switch over to the new services with minimal disruption.
The platform comprised of private cloud for core services, VPDC to service seasonal demand spikes and prototyping, with a combination of managed and unmanaged elements, with a sophisticated HA security and load balancing infrastructure.
This high risk make-or-break project took just months to complete with no consultancy assistance and was seamlessly implemented over one weekend with negligible downtime. The project team successfully delivered this complex migration and transformation project to quality, time and budget and something that received universal praise from all parts of the business. I also picked up the 2012 IT Excellence Award for my contribution to the projects success.
I project managed the implementation of an extensive secure and robust infrastructure to host online services for central government this included a pioneering high volume website and the transition to virtualised Win32 application delivery using VDI technologies.
In this time I also planned and controlled a complex co-location data centre move between suppliers and data centres - all completed within a single weekend and minimal downtime.
I also helped the organisation achieved the ISO27001 security accreditation for the hosted infrastructure and introduced tailored ITIL best practices to drive efficiencies within the operations of the IT team.
As part of a European streamlining program, this world leading container shipping company identified a requirement to consolidate common administration services contained by all business units of the enterprise into a single new organisation. The project was split into two stages; the first was to prepare offices and move staff in from various locations, the second was to consolidate the IT environments for each business unit.
Through my extensive technical knowledge and proven ability to successfully deliver projects, I was appointed the technical lead for this high-profile and political project, a role which was a combination of project management and technical consultancy.
I assisted with the design of the phase one specification (including building preparation from an IT prospective, the design of a comprehensive computer room, LAN, cabling, etc.) and was responsible for moving staff into the first site - a prestigious grade two listed building that required complete refurbishment prior to occupation (and later used as a blueprint for future sites). My focus was then redirected to phase two of the project where I was the technical design authority for a scalable IT infrastructure for seven European offices. Once completed, and thoroughly documented, I was responsible for its rapid deployment to all sites.
Project management tasks included team leadership, project definition, risk assessment, contingency planning, budget forecasting and management, communication with key stakeholders, supplier management, etc. One of the most significant challenges was traversing the politics that typically is associated with this type of reorganisation.
Eastern Electricity (now EDF Energy)
I was headhunted to lead the deployment of a £4M systems management suite, called Bull OpenMaster, to monitor 100+ application servers throsughout the enterprise; the role required a comprehensive appreciation of heterogeneous environments such as Windows NT and UNIX variants. I was solely responsible for the 8 Windows NT servers and 9 AIX servers (including a HACMP cluster) that supported the system. DNS was a key prerequisite for the system so I managed a scalable UNIX-based DNS infrastructure that was later adopted throughout the organisations infrastructure. The role demanded thorough analysis of business requirements and timely delivery of comprehensive technological solutions.
I also project managed the rollout of a corporate standard network adapter for enhanced management and support throughout the enterprise. Working closely with the networks team, we quickly identified and resolved common technical issues that arose within their complex heterogeneous environment. Then I worked with local IT personnel to rollout to all 4000 desktop computers.
Due to my strong Windows NT knowledge I soon become the Windows NT advocate for the finance department that my team had responsibility for and was later assigned to project manage the deployment of a new suite of financial applications to over 400 users distributed throughout the organisation.