A Change for the Better

SSWOver the last 2 and a bit years, I have worked for a fantastic group of people at TSWG working on a few projects including Internet and Mobile Banking sites for various clients. However, the time has come to move on and step up another level in the Visual Studio ALM stack.

Taking a job at SSW as a Senior Software Architect is an exciting move for me. I’m expecting Adam Cogan and the rest of the team at SSW to coach me to be a better developer, trainer, team leader and Scrum Master.

I will work for a wide range of customers and I’m sure I’ll face many challenges, which I look forward to solving using ALM and a good Scrum strategy to find the best solution.

What does this mean?

This new job will bring a few new things:

  1. I’ll be running the Brisbane office for SSW. This means meeting new customers, leading teams, and getting some SSW branding out there (probably by implementing some Rules to Better Branding)
  2. Rules and standards. These are part and parcel of working for SSW.  It’s something they’re known for as a company and I will play a part in many of the new rules. Some of my favourites at the moment are: And there are some I like but I can see myself contributing to in the near future:
  3. Scrum and ALM. This will be a very big part of my work.  I’m looking forward to continuing to learn and implement effective Scrum at SSW and for a lot of clients. I’ve long had an appreciation for effective Scrum but, even in my first month, I can see even more that it is imperative to being able to deliver good software. In the next 6 months I will become both a Certified Scrum Master and a Professional Scrum Developer Trainer. In particular, I’ll be focusing on
    • Scrum
    • Automated Functional Testing
    • TDD (where appropriate)
    • BDD
    • Continuous Integration
    • Continuous Deployment
    These are all pieces of the same puzzle and with the right combination, you can ship solid code quickly that really meets the customers’ needs.
  4. Cutting-edge technology. Keeping up with cutting-edge technology is something SSW really values. They have two Microsoft Regional Directors and three MVP’s so it’s hard to argue with their expertise. I’m looking forward to working a lot more with the following technologies:
    • Visual Studio 2010
    • Dynamics CRM 2011
    • SharePoint 2010
    • ASP.NET MVC
    • Orchard CMS
    • Team Foundation Build 2010
    • Microsoft Test Manager and Telerik Test Suite
    • All things Microsoft .NET 4
    But there are some technologies I’m happy to leave to the other guys at SSW:
    • Silverlight 5
    • DotNetNuke
    I’m planning to delve deep in a lot of technologies to work out which are the best to use.  It’s important to have a wide skillset with expertise in a few key technologies.
  5. Working with Telerik. SSW has a good relationship with Telerik and while I do use other 3rd-party tools, Telerik is by far the most common at SSW.
  6. Effective Communication. One of the first things I noticed with SSW was their attention to effective communication. If I took nothing else from SSW it would be the Rules to better Email which, if followed sensibly, helps me function really well as a member of a team.  Email can be a very effective tool and the last thing you want is a “What did you mean by that?” reply.
  7. My blog. I expect my blog to get a lot better with posts about the things I’m working on.  In the foreseeable future I anticipate posts about:
    • Setting up an effective remote work environment
    • Upgrading customers from VB6 to .NET
    • Upgrading customers to TFS 2010
    • Migrating customers from onevTFS Process template to another using the TFS Integration Platform
    • Upgrading SharePoint from 2007 to 2010
    • Upcoming Public and Private Professional Scrum Developer courses
  8. Training (on both sides of the podium). I’m looking forward to both learning at courses and running courses for others.

What’s next?

First things first. If you are in QLD and you are looking for a MVC/SharePoint/CRM/TFS/ALM consultant/team, give me a call!
Having an office in Brisbane means that SSW is much better equipped to provide these expert services.

Keep an eye out for me at the Brisbane user groups, conferences, and any tech event.  I’ll be even more active than before in the Australian tech community.  I look forward to having chats with other Brisbane-based techies.  And if you’re sick of the technology talk, feel free to branch out.  As a long-suffering St Kilda fan, I'm always happy to talk about all things AFL.

I’m excited about this next chapter in my professional life, and I’ll be sure to keep this blog up to day with all the challenges it brings.

Damian Brady

I'm an Australian developer, speaker, and author specialising in DevOps, developer process, and software architecture. I love Octopus Deploy, Visual Studio Team Services, and reducing process waste.

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