Statement of Purpose
I’m all about seeing products get built and people developed. In my career, this has taken a variety of different forms, ranging from writing code and designing systems to managing teams to visiting customers and presenting at conferences. I love learning something new, love challenging the status quo (as well as having my status quo challenged), and love sharing what I’ve learned with other people, especially when the culmination of it all is shipping a great product.
- Global Project Management: Led 10+ large software projects with teams spanning the United States, Europe, and Asia. Managed team members in both direct and indirect capacities.
- Organizational Leadership: Worked across organizational and discipline boundaries to impact non-engineering functions such as HR, training, and business development.
- Vision Development: Ideated numerous cross-business unit technology strategies for multiple Fortune Global 500 employers including SAP and Microsoft.
- Team Management: Served in a direct manager capacity for teams as small as 2 and as large as 15 across different disciplines. Indirectly/virtually managed teams of up to 50.
- Technology Research and Strategy: Noted for developing solid technology vision for multiple teams. Recognized for excellence in continuous research and development of new tools and techniques for designing, building, and operating large-scale software systems.
- Architecture: Designed large-scale systems architecture for both on-premise and cloud-native projects. Guided development, infrastructure, and operations teams through delivery and operationalization.
- Product Planning: Created product and product family roadmaps for standardized tests, educational courses, and software systems.
- Business Strategy: Conducted competitive and market analyses, derived strategy proposals, and presented those to company executives – both in person and in writing.
- Stakeholder Engagement: Demonstrated success in leading internal stakeholders and collaborating with external vendors (e.g. Google, Starbucks, Microsoft) to drive positive outcomes in technology management.
- Public Speaking: Regular lecturer as a subject matter expert at both conferences and individual company events (Microsoft, Disney, Visa) with audience sizes ranging from 25-750.
- Teaching and Writing: Published teacher through the online education hub Pluralsight and a published author for 2 books and several journal articles. Regularly publish educational content to personal blog (http://blog.howarddierking.com).
- Open Source: Initiated new open-source projects, worked with internal counsel to release internal products to the open-source community, and managed active projects and communities.
- Budget Management: Demonstrated leadership in both meeting budgetary expectations and also in budget planning for budgets up to 1MM USD.
Concur - Director of Software Development
June 2015 – Present
- Vision Development: Distill high-level executive management goals into concrete problem definitions that can be pursued by both my development teams and our business counterparts.
- Team Management: Manage a team of 20 developers (including 2 development managers), divided into 3 organizational units. Includes employees in Bellevue, WA, Vienna, VA, and Maidenhead, UK.
- Global Project Management: Partnered with colleagues in France and Japan to deliver next generation receipts service globally. Coordinated with colleagues in Germany and Prague to deliver a data orchestration service. Actively overseeing the development and operation of 5 projects in various stages of development.
- Organizational Leadership: Worked with peer to create career competencies and paths for all Concur engineers and managers. Participated in physical space design/planning to create a collaborative team environment. Participated in additional cross-company functions as part of CTO extended leadership group. Influenced technical leaders across SAP in areas such as service design and architecture.
- Stakeholder Engagement: Actively manage relationships with peers across the company for building consensus around key company-level decisions. Participate in partner engagements to ensure that customer requirements are clearly understood and that partners feel supported.
- Business Strategy: Conducted competitive analyses and presented 5-year strategic plan to company executives.
- Technology Research and Strategy: Actively researching and providing thought leadership for semantic web and linked data technology as well as cloud-native software architecture.
- Public Speaking: Invited to speak at SAP developer conference in Germany two years in a row. Highest-rated lecturer by external company in 2016.
- Budget Management: Manage budgets for personnel, morale, and equipment.
Concur - Senior Manager Software Development
September 2014 – June 2015
- Team Management: Led a team of 5 Concur developers to build a variety of online service offerings to improve the adoption of the Concur platform.
- Global Project Management: Drove delivery for 3 Concur products, including the Concur developer center (https://developer.concur.com), client libraries (https://www.npmjs.com/package/concur, https://www.nuget.org/packages/ConcurPlatform/), and the highly-publicized Starbucks connector (http://www.bloomberg.com/news/videos/2015-02-23/concur-taking-the-pain-out-of-expense-reports).
- Product Planning: Captured business scenarios for the Concur/Starbucks partnership and set up the basic structure and vision for the team to execute on.
- Vision Development & Technology Research and Strategy: Spearheaded micro-services architecture efforts using the Amazon Web Services (AWS) public cloud. Delivered Starbucks connector application to production in 3 months with a team of 3 people. Designed technology and strategies for converting Concur developer center from a traditional content management system model to a statically-generated web site with content authored in Markdown and managed on GitHub.
- Public Speaking: Gave multiple presentations (both within and outside the company) on services architecture, developer pipeline, and team workflow.
- Open Source: Drove release of multiple team projects as open-source on GitHub (https://github.com/concur), including the Concur developer center. Since release as open source, developer center has been forked 50+ times and has 50+ contributors.
Dierking Consulting, LLC - Principal
April 2013 – Present
- Technology Research and Strategy: Research tools and techniques for building large-scale, cloud-native applications. Topics gravitate around cloud platforms and data management/processing tools.
- Architecture: Help customers define and create software systems for a variety of different business domains and technology stacks. Have worked with companies of all types and sizes (including a large health insurance company, a child safety non-profit, and a 3-person Silicon Valley startup).
- Global Project Management: Led client development teams in the United States, Mexico, Europe, and Asia in implementing designs and delivering capabilities.
- Business Strategy: Performed market analyses for clients to determine product and feature viability. Participated in go-to-market strategy creation and execution.
- Teaching and Writing: Created online training material for Pluralsight, contributed to several books and journals, and regularly publish content to http://blog.howarddierking.com.
Microsoft - Senior Program Manager (ASP.NET)
January 2012 – Sept. 2014
- Global Project Management: Project owner for the NuGet package management system, ASP.NET Web-optimization code library, and the “Katana Project” runtime. Managed project rhythm and delivery schedule for both internal and external customers. Delivered multiple versions of all projects including introducing the debut version of the Katana project to Microsoft customers.
- Open Source: Assumed management of open source projects for NuGet client (http://nuget.codeplex.com) and server (https://github.com/NuGet). Created a new open-source community for the Katana project (later became https://github.com/aspnet/GetStarted), and drove the open sourcing of the core ASP.NET Web Optimization framework (https://aspnetoptimization.codeplex.com/).
- Public Speaking: Represented my teams and Microsoft at internal and external industry events. Provided in-depth lectures and consulting to Microsoft customers. Recorded video lectures as a part of product launch collateral.
- Teaching and Writing: Authored numerous journal articles in support of my teams and projects. Authored and reviewed official product documentation.
- Technology Research and Strategy: Built applications in competing technology stacks to understand tradeoffs in developer experience, and then distilled findings into feature design. Directly applied expertise in RESTful systems to the design of a new NuGet server (https://docs.nuget.org/ndocs/api/nuget-api-v3).
- Stakeholder Engagement: Maintained critical partnerships with many internal teams across divisions in order to deliver projects on time. Drove creation of partnership between NuGet and Sonatype which resulted in a new NuGet feature (package license discovery) with almost zero engineering investment.
- Vision Development & Organizational Leadership: Drove efforts to apply NuGet and package management for changing core development processes inside Microsoft. Worked across divisions to design and promote significant tooling improvements to support package management workflows.
Microsoft - Program Manager II (AppFabric Developer Platform)
January 2011 – January 2012
- Global Project Management: Drove milestone planning and ran regular bug triage with development and test counterparts. Represented team in organizational tactics and shiproom meetings to ensure that risks and dependencies were properly communicated across the organization.
- Technology Research and Strategy: Researched industry-standard specifications, practices, and tools to create proposals and specifications for the WCF Web API service framework. Authored sample code which was included as a part of the Windows SDK.
- Stakeholder Engagement: Partnered with 4 key Microsoft product teams representing both dependencies and dependents to ensure that all teams were not blocked.
- Public Speaking: Represented team and Microsoft at large industry conferences, including Microsoft TechEd (https://channel9.msdn.com/Events/TechEd/NorthAmerica/2011/MID307). Met with several enterprise Microsoft customers to evangelize the new framework and consult on a migration path.
- Teaching and Writing: Published in industry journals to evangelize and educate on the Web API service framework.
Microsoft - Program Manager II (Server and Tools Online)
September 2009 – January 2011
- Team Management: Drove a cross-disciplinary, 5-person team to select, customize, and deploy an open source content management system (CMS) in a multi-datacenter architecture for https://msdn.microsoft.com and https://technet.microsoft.com.
- Technology Research and Strategy & Architecture: Investigated internal details of Umbraco CMS (https://umbraco.com) to create feature designs and implement best practices for development and operations teams. Sought out by development teams to review technical architecture/feature code.
- Stakeholder Engagement: Gathered and validated requirements from content teams across all of Microsoft who would need to manage content on new CMS. Worked closely with Microsoft network operations and security teams to ensure that CMS was delivered in a highly scalable and secure manner.
- Organizational Leadership: Drove the CMS development team to adopt agile tools such as distributed version control and practices such as continuous integration and delivery. This enabled the CMS team to deliver improvements rapidly (sometimes multiple times per day).
- Open Source: Worked closely with the Umbraco core team to deliver content management implementation (including reporting feature gaps and issues to the leadership team to improve the open-source product).
Microsoft - Editor-in-Chief, MSDN Magazine
July 2007 – September 2009
- Vision Development & Product Planning: Drove content strategy and editorial direction for MSDN Magazine (both print and online assets).
- Global Project Management: Ensured that 24+ issues of the magazine consistently released on time to both the printer and the website.
- Stakeholder Engagement: Partnered with various business and product marketing organizations (e.g. MS Office and Visual Studio teams) as well as with engineering teams to build consensus around editorial strategy as well as secure authors and technical reviewers.
- Team Management: Managed a team of 2 Microsoft FTEs and 3 vendors.
- Budget Management: Managed an annual acquisitions budget of 300,000 USD.
- Organizational Leadership: Built process automation and business intelligence solutions using SharePoint and the SQL Server BI stack to streamline editorial and production process (as well as improve the decision-making process around investments).
- Technology Research and Strategy: Designed, developed, and released MSDN Magazine Pivot viewer, as well as the source code.
- Teaching and Writing: Authored monthly editor’s note with commentary and insights on the current issue’s theme and content.
- Public Speaking: Represented the magazine at many large industry events (e.g. TechEd, TechEd Europe, DevConnections).
Microsoft - Product Planner, Certifications (Microsoft Learning)
July 2006 – July 2007
- Product Planning & Business Strategy: Determined the most impactful strategies for MSL investments in developer certification exams.
- Stakeholder Engagement: Worked with Microsoft product and business groups to build consensus on exam portfolio strategy and secured additional funding where needed. Worked with Microsoft business partners to create new technology solutions to support the certification business.
- Global Project Management: Supported exam development process as a technology expert. Worked across Microsoft Learning business units to ensure that exams had supporting training material.
- Vision Development: Worked with MSL product development group to create new models for exam creation using techniques such as crowd-sourcing and machine learning.
- Technology Research and Strategy: Created tools to automate redundant data processing tasks for exam creation. Filed patent for automated matching of employers and potential employees using machine learning and certification data.
Software Architects, Inc. - Managing Consultant & Technical Project Lead (AIG)
August 2005 – June 2006
- Technology Research and Strategy & Architecture: Designed and constructed metadata-based architecture which enabled distributed work streams based on various insurance products and reuse of code assets across those work streams. Product architecture reduced new product introduction time by at least 50%.
- Team Management: Led team of 3 consultants and 4 AIG employees in design and implementation of a web-based insurance products application for 40,000 insurance agents.
- Organizational Leadership: Drove an agile life cycle management strategy utilizing Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 Team System.
- Teaching and Writing: Became subject matter expert for creating and reviewing Microsoft developer certification exams. Author for Exam 70-529 (Distributed Application Development).
Riversand Technologies - Lead Architect (Aramco Services Company)
November 2004 – July 2005
- Team Management: Led team of 3 Aramco employees in a variety of internal software development projects that leveraged object-oriented design, .Net implementation, and project life cycle management.
- Architecture: Designed web-based finance management tool which was responsible for accurately calculating and tracking purchases and sales of crude oil (approximately 600mm USD per month). Designed budgeting and planning application which provided data entry and rollup capabilities for budget representatives at various levels of the organization and generated executive management reports for strategic decision making.
- Global Project Management: Worked across multiple organizations, both technical and business, to deliver 2 internal finance applications.
- Stakeholder Engagement: Gathered and validated requirements with business stakeholders. Ensured business sign-off for multiple, agile releases.
- Organizational Leadership: Introduced agile development practices to the larger development organization, including continuous integration, test-driven development, and automated deployment.
Riversand Technologies - Senior Systems Architect (Internal Product Engineering)
June 2004 – November 2004
- Organizational Leadership: Designed and implemented an agile software development process used to coordinate parallel work of both U.S. and India development and QA teams.
- Technology Research and Strategy: Created automated build process which included unit test runs.
- Global Project Management: Coordinated work between development teams in the United States and test teams in India.
Riversand Technologies - Technical Architect/Team Lead (Hewlett-Packard)
September 2003 – June 2004
- Architecture: Worked in developing a new technical application architecture for all product configuration applications for the Quote & Config organization. Designed application architecture for a web-based data mart reporting tool.
- Global Project Management (Quote & Config): Led a team of contractors and HP employees based in Houston, Palo Alto, and Germany in the implementation of a new .NET web-based configuration application – delivered application 3 months ahead of schedule.
- Global Project Management (Knowledge Point Express): Guided a junior consultant in turning around what had been a failing project and delivered the working application within 3 months of taking over the development effort.
- Organizational Leadership: Provided technical best practices and guidance to HP’s Quote & Config development group. Modified existing development processes to include daily, automated builds.
AMSI - Senior Programmer/Analyst
December 1999 – September 2003
- Technology Research and Strategy: Built application features for multiple products in AMSI’s product portfolio using Visual Basic 6 and ASP. Investigated and created strategy for developing web-based applications using Visual Basic rather than classic ASP scripts. Created technology components and strategy for rendering web application components from within the browser while interacting with data from a server (this approach was later referred to as “AJAX”).
- Architecture: Designed and developed .NET web application architecture to provide unified support for exception handling, error reporting, tracing, data access, configuration, and encryption.
- Organizational Leadership: Designed and implemented a source control strategy and build automation strategy. Represented AMSI engineering group to senior management when the company was acquired by Infor.
- Bachelor of Arts (BA) | Major: Political Science | Minor: Computer Science | Samford University.
- MCTS: SQL Server 2005 Business Intelligence.
- (Co-Author) – Designing Evolvable Web APIs with ASP.NET – 2014
- (Author) - Getting Started with the Katana Project – 2013
- (Author) – REST Fundamentals - 2012
- (Co-Author) – Open Government: Collaboration, Transparency, and Participation in Practice – 2010
- (Technical Reviewer) – The Geek Atlas: 128 Places Where Science and Technology Come Alive – 2009
- (Co-Author) – An Empirical Study of Unsupervised Rule Set Extraction of Clustered Categorical Data Using a Simulated Bee Colony Algorithm – 2009
- (Author) – MSDN Magazine (multiple) – 2007-2009
- metalsmith-ldschema. Metalsmith plugin for generating Web documentation for a linked data vocabulary. Inspired by https://schema.org.
- blog.howarddierking.com. My personal blog. Also a testbed for experiments with different Node-based static site generators.
- building-restful-services. Contains all sample code for my Pluralsight course, Building RESTful Services.
- international-address. NodeJS-based formatting library for international addresses.
- ssis-wcf-dataservices. This code sample shows you how to create a SQL Server Integration Services custom data source that can interoperate with WCF Data Services (formerly known as Astoria). In addition to simply illustrating the mechanics of working with SSIS and ADO.NET Data Services, the sample also illustrates some design practices and techniques such as separation of concerns and behavior-driven development.
- msdnmagpivot-public. Source code used to create and display the MSDN Magazine collection for the Silverlight Pivot viewer control.
- RestBugs. A simple, hypermedia-driven bug tracking API.
- NuGet. NuGet is the package manager for the Microsoft development platforms including .NET. Create, share, and reuse thousands of NuGet packages.
- Web Optimization. The ASP.NET Web optimization framework provides services to improve the performance of your ASP.NET Web applications.
Selected Conferences and Presentations
- (Presenter) Web Camps – “The Katana Project - OWIN for ASP.NET” – May 2013
- (Keynote Presenter) – DevTeach Montreal - 2012
- (Presenter) TechEd North America – “Make Yourself Comfortable and REST with Microsoft.NET” - 2011
- (Track Chair) ITNG 2009 Software Testing Track – April 2009
- (Panelist) TechEd North America – “Business Intelligence: Thinking Bigger about the Role of BI in Delivering Business Value” - 2009
- (Presenter) “IT Manager Webcast: IT Manager Community Talk with Kevin - Business Intelligence” - April 2009