Ahmad Alkhawaja, Product Manager in Dubai, United Arab Emirates
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Ahmad Alkhawaja

Verified Expert  in Product Management

Product Manager

Location
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Toptal Member Since
July 8, 2022

Ahmad is experienced in developing and managing products from concept to launch, with a proven track record in identifying market opportunities, defining product requirements, and driving product development. He is also skilled in go-to-market planning and execution. He analyzes and solves problems by thinking strategically and executing tactically. Ahmad is a leader who is adept at liaising between technical and non-tech savvy people to communicate project requirements and updates.

Work Experience

Technical Product and Engineering Manager

2022 - PRESENT
Sharaf DG
  • Analyzed customer feedback for data-driven improvements to the marketplace user experience, contributing to over $5 million in monthly revenue and attracting numerous sellers and customers to the platform.
  • Streamlined budget management for product development projects, ensuring optimal return on investment.
  • Utilized Agile methodologies for effective project management, including managing sprints and Jira boards and crafting comprehensive user stories and specifications.
  • Led the successful migration of a marketplace from Mirakl to a Python back-end system, and SharafDG.com's PIM system to the Akeneo PIM system, delivered in just three months.
  • Managed a seamless data migration involving hundreds of sellers, tens of thousands of listings, and hundreds of thousands of products.
  • Oversaw integration with various systems, including SAP, WooCommerce, LowCode, and OMS.
  • Streamlined budget management for product development projects, maximizing return on investment and ensuring all expenses remained within the allocated limits.
  • Conducted regular meetings with team members to discuss upcoming product developments and changes in company policy, maintaining alignment and focus on the marketplace's strategic objectives.
  • Played a crucial role in recruiting, onboarding, and mentoring team members, fostering a collaborative and learning-oriented environment.

Co-founder | Senior Product Manager

2014 - 2022
Tasqat
  • Managed the conceptualization and launch of an award-winning, UK-accredited B2B innovation management system. This top-selling product has generated USD 3+ million since its 2018 launch.
  • Increased revenue by 35% after developing and executing a partnership strategy with innovation consultants, companies, and the public sector.
  • Led teams of sales, engineering, product, design, and marketing experts in all phases of the custom product solutions delivery, including the requirements, build, test, QA, launch, and support phases for public and private sector clients.

Technical Product and Engineering Manager

2011 - 2022
Topcoder
  • Bridged the gap between the business and its customers and the technology teams, including sales specialists, product managers, developers, designers, and QA engineers, to communicate and align with requirements for various projects.
  • Contributed to creating the product vision and translated and prioritized requirements to maintain an accurate and achievable roadmap.
  • Owned the planning, scheduling, and reprioritization of roadmaps.
  • Met 93% of all features' deadlines and stayed below the budget 98% of the time by identifying and mitigating engineering roadblocks.

Software Engineer

2007 - 2011
Topcoder
  • Conceptualized modern enterprise software in close collaboration with industry-leading clients such as NASA, DARPA, LendingTree, and the US Department of Energy.
  • Created designs and prototypes for many enterprise web projects in .NET, Java, HTML, CSS, Flex, JavaScript, and web services in JSON, REST, and SOAP.
  • Prepared specifications, defined requirements, and implemented architecture and object-oriented software designs in applications based on Java, including J2SE, J2EE, and J2ME, C#, JavaScript, and Objective-C.
  • Developed unified modeling language designs and Visio models for complex software projects.

Innovation Management System

Led a team of over 30 people cross-functioning across all phases to deliver an innovation management system that replaced well-established systems in the field, earning an ideasUK Platinum Accreditation for the entities using the system.

The Tasqat innovation management system is a leading B2B software in the Middle East and North Africa. It helps businesses manage innovation processes, such as tracking their ideas, progress, and results.

3D Data Center Visualization Tool

Directed the design and development of an in-house web tool for the 3D visualization of over 500 data centers for a leading telecom company in the region.

The tool provides accurate 3D views of an entire data center, including servers, storage, networking equipment, rack power distribution units, patch panels, and applications. It implements advanced algorithms to parse AutoCAD files and produce a 3D version with minimal human intervention.

Crowd Sourced Formal Verification (CSFV) Platform

Managed the design and development of the CSFV social community platform, including its integration with Amazon Mechanical Turk to automate crowdsourcing to gamers.

DARPA created the CSFV program to investigate whether large numbers of non-experts can perform formal verification faster and more cost-effectively than conventional processes. The goal was to transform verification into a more accessible task by creating fun, intuitive games that reflect formal verification problems. Playing the games would help software verification tools complete corresponding formal verification proofs.

The Sunshot Initiative of the US DOE

Oversaw the technical product development of at least ten teams to build subsidy‐free solar energy cost‐competitive products for the US Department of Energy (DOE).

THE CHALLENGE:
Not enough Americans have adopted solar energy, and it is believed that soft costs plus numerous barriers to adopt solar have hindered overall uptake. As part of its ongoing mission to boost the adoption of solar energy, the US DOE announced a competition series called SunShot Catalyst to help cutting-edge companies speed up time-to-market for innovative new solar solutions. Participants were challenged to submit problem statements that could be solved through automation, algorithms, data, and software.

THE SOLUTION:
Through an open call for ideas that generated hundreds of submissions, the DOE and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory curated top ideas for business models into a grouping of 17 unique finalists. These 17 teams were each given access to the Topcoder platform and a budget of $25,000, enabling them to execute quickly on design concepts, prototypes, and minimum viable products.

NASA Planetary Data Storyboard (PDS)

https://www.nasa.gov/feature/pds-storyboard-challenge

Led the design and development of the pilot version of the web application that allows scientists to put together storyboards and collaborate on planetary data by sharing artifacts.

NASA has recorded over 100 terabytes of space images, telemetry, models, and just about everything one can imagine from all the planetary missions from the past 30 years. The data stored is within NASA's planetary data system (PDS).

The PDS project is to set up a POC for a Pinterest-like research tool that links the PDS with users who want to create research projects.

Amazon MTurk "Pay To Play" SaaS Automation

Led the development of a crowdsource SaaS product that saved hundreds of hours per week for game app developers.

Mturification is a web automation SaaS product that allows game app developers to offer cash rewards ("Pay To Play") model for Beta Testers and Gamers via the Amazon MTurk platform.

Mturification is a multi-tenant SaaS that exposes API for game app developers to integrate with Amazon MTurk API with the web admin dashboard.

In-class Mini Gym

Led the design and development of an IoT In-class Mini Gym as part of the Fighting Obesity initiative in the UAE.

Fighting obesity is a strategic objective in the UAE. The idea is to install an IoT mini gym inside classes across UAE for students to play with on their break or during math classes.

The project was developed using scales, sensors, Raspberry Pi, the JavaScript stack app, and an Android tablet.

The project has three parts:

• The TV dashboard displays ongoing activities during play or the Leaderboard at the ideal time.
• An Android app to launch IoT device games.
• The 9x9 tile grid on the floor and wall, managed by the RaspberyPI device, interacts via the TCP/IP ethernet and wires.

Project and Task Management System

Led the design and development to build internal software tool for managing projects and portfolio and tasks.

The product was implemented to comply with ISO 21500, address the client's need to manage portfolios and projects across different countries, and manage and cascade tasks across departments.

The system was built with localization and internationalization features, dashboards, reports, and a visualized PDF report generation feature.

TAMM Digital Transformation

https://www.tamm.abudhabi/

Led a team of 25 resources to transform and automate Abu Dhabi entities business processes.

Abu Dhabi Government initiated a project to fully transform all government services to be offered online through a consistent digital transformation platform where any citizen can apply for these services.

I led the project as a tech lead and solution architect, designing the processes and managing the resources to execute them for 25 entities with hundreds of processes via a world-class low code platform and Camunda business process platform.
2002 - 2006

Bachelor's Degree in Computer Science

Yarmouk University - Irbid, Jordan

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