Natalie Cervantes, CSM

Agile Coach, Scrum Master, Program Manager

About Me

"The conductor of an orchestra doesn't make a sound. He depends for his power on his ability to make others powerful. My job was to awaken possibility in other people. . ."

- Ben Zander

As an Agile Coach, Scrum Master and Program Manager over the past 10+ years, my goal is to inspire, guide, and motivate teams to see results, not only in producing great products but in evolving and growing their effectiveness, and efficiency with each other. Together, what we produce, not only provides direct user and business value, but also has the benefit of promoting and encouraging team success, appreciation, continuous improvement, and pride of workmanship.

As a good conductor might inspire an orchestra to new heights, as an Agile coach, Scrum Master, and Program Manager, I consistently help organizations achieve successful and happy client relationships, increased customer satisfaction, and develop highly productive teams.

Experiences

[A] (Simple [A], LLC) - North America

2016 - 2018

 

Agile Coach & Scrum Master / Strategy and Engagement Manager

Implemented Agile Scrum Methodology and lean practices throughout the organization designed to improve communications between Engineering, Engagement Managers, Business Management and our clients as well as to to provide more transparency across all departments. This had the additional benefit of obtaining increased business value with increased efficiencies. Planned and managed work activities for two project development teams implementing an enterprise scale digital experience platform built on Sitecore and providing consultancy in JIRA, DevOps and Agile tools and processes.

  • Coached / mentored a cross-functional, fully distributed team of 9 resources delivering a quality digital experience platform leading to more than $2 million in revenue for the firm.
  • Generated $19k in revenue by providing coaching and training sessions to external clients in Agile best practices.
  • Improved team delivery commitments and capacity planning for sprints by identifying and implementing throughput & cycle time measures based on actual data from past deliverables. This resulted in faster planning and more reliable delivery commitments with each iteration.
  • Facilitated release planning, sprint planning, backlog grooming and retrospective meetings.
  • Closely collaborated with both internal teams of developers, quality assurance, content engineers, and design professionals as well as the client’s business stakeholders to develop and maintain product backlogs, as well as prioritize and validate product requirements.
  • Coordinated and participated in both daily and weekly planning meetings to provide high-level estimates for story backlog items, identify requirement gaps, and resolve open issues.
  • Tracked burndown, issues and progress in JIRA.
  • Facilitative leader, deeply adept and experienced with building consensus across varied stakeholder groups in the face of unexpected opportunities and obstacles.
  • Partnered with QA leadership and sales to improve client contracts by offering optional levels of quality at varying price points.

 

Bsquare - Bellevue, Washington

2011 – 2014

 

Sr. Program Manager/ Certified Scrum Master, Professional Engineering Services

Released several high-profile project implementations based upon the Android platform for clients such as the Amazon Kindle, &  Trimble Navigation’s Juno T41 C: Rugged Handheld Device, as well as Coca-Cola Freestyle based on the Windows Embedded platform.

  • Led improvements to team delivery commitments and capacity planning for sprints by identifying & tracking team velocity and associated task effort which increased customer satisfaction.
  • Facilitated Agile adoption of Exchange Requests for fixed price, fixed scope projects resulting in enhanced team performance and increased customer satisfaction.
  • Enforced Scrum principles resulting in a reduction of cycle time and an a 70% increase of team's throughput.
  • Removed obstacles for the team by appropriately escalating issues when necessary resulting in early delivery of customer issue solution. Customers provided glowing feedback.
  • Coached and trained global teams, which resulting in early delivery of projects and reduced process waste caused by lack of common understanding.
  • Conducted sprint demos that resulted in clear feedback and next steps for product deliverables, leading to higher quality product releases.
  • Defined resourcing needs for each project. Assessed, re-prioritized and updated resourcing levels, as required.
  • Expertly managed project dependencies, ensuring that key deliverables and associated risks were closely tracked, communicated and had reasonable mitigation plans.
  • Presented executive briefings which outlined program financial status, customer satisfaction, risks, opportunities and progress.
  • Crafted statements of work to drive successful project implementations that defined the project scope, assumptions and levels of quality that effectively aligned to key business objectives for our clients.
  • Consistently met or exceeded utilization goals, which contributed to the increase of chargeability and revenue.

 

Microsoft - Redmond, Washington

2008 - 2010

 

 

Program Manager, Windows Embedded Compact

Planned, implemented and successfully shipped both the Silverlight for Windows Embedded sample UI, and corresponding development tools for the Windows Embedded Compact 7 release.  This showcased the underlying shell API based on Silverlight and provided a streamlined approach for the creation of rich mobile applications.

  • Created wireframes and functional specifications that provided clear direction for feature implementation,  user experience and functionality.
  • Set priorities for the group, tracked progress, and communicated status to key stakeholders across engineering teams, and product groups to ensure features were completed on time, within the appropriate scope, and delivered at the highest quality.
  • Collaborated across teams and product groups to ensure that the end to end user experience for the overall product was cohesive and in line with the product vision.
  • Developed an effective internal customer feedback loop process based on tests and usage of alpha and beta stages of product release.  This feedback was factored into better product and project decisions for final release.
  • Led key design change decisions and implementations at executive level meetings ensuring the success of the overall release.  This resulted in key changes to the product scope that better aligned to the overall product vision when necessary.

Education

University of Oregon - B.A. English and Business Administration

Skills & Tools

Experience & Familiarity %

Java
25%
Swift
25%
Android
25%
SQL
25%
JQL (JIRA Query Language)
100%
JIRA Atlassian
100%
Xcode
50%
Bitbucket/ Git
75%
Aha!
50%
TFS
25%
Visual Studio
25%
Eclipse
50%

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