Johnny Chao, Project Manager in Toronto, ON, Canada
Johnny Chao

Project Manager in Toronto, ON, Canada

Member since June 19, 2018
For over the past 15 years, Johnny has been successfully launching multiple software and telco products in a number of industries as both a project and product manager. He is experienced in banking, credit, fintech, loyalty, GIS, and telco industries to name a few. Having worked in both startups to the largest banks and software companies, Johnny is well versed in different SDLC and has developed a highly effective and influential style of work.
Johnny is now available for hire

Project Highlights



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  • Head of Product Manager Vertical

    2018 - 2020
    • Conceived, designed, and built the product management vertical at Toptal from ground zero, including market/competitive research, client interviews, business case/model, in a comprehensive prospectus and execution plan.
    • Created a world-class screening framework with content, and built a product management talent network of hundreds of the world’s best product managers/leaders.
    • Developed a client base of over 18+ million YoY revenue and over 500 successful engagements in an 18 month period.
  • Head of Data Strategy and Solutions

    2017 - 2018
    Transunion Canada
    • Led the data strategy team, including data scientists and project/product managers.
    • Handled the overall ownership for Transunion Canada’s data strategy and data roadmap execution.
    • Acted as a key member of the executive governance/board reviews to steer the C suite on the latest data/technology trends.
    • Led numerous projects to launch new products and solutions for clients in the financial service space.
    • Managed and was responsible for 20 million+ of new product growth over 2017-2018.
  • Director, Digital Product

    2016 - 2017
    Royal Bank of Canada
    • Oversaw 12+ million dollars of product ideation, development, and launch budget over 2016-2017.
    • Worked on the first and only team within RBC Digital to release new iterations to production every two weeks, making RBC truly Agile.
    • Led the product/project team to run three separate agile teams—building the next-generation RBC digital products.
    • Launched multiple new products for RBC and drove user growth while saving costs to customer support and acquisition.
  • Head of Innovation and Commercialization

    2013 - 2016
    Finastra (formerly Davis and Henderson)
    • Led a cross-functional agile team of 20-35 in an end-to-end product innovation and commercialization process.
    • Worked with and pitched to large banks and credit unions in North America to provide and enhance their product offerings and internal toolsets in core banking, loan origination, digital payments, and more.
    • Led product management for new ideas in lending, payments, and new areas of focus—launching numerous products and pilots.
    • Pitched to and collaborated with the executive leadership team to get the buy-in and investment for key innovation projects.
    • Managed partner and vendor relationships in building an external strategic innovation lab.
  • Director, New Product Development

    2011 - 2013
    • Managed and was responsible for North American product strategy and development in the enhancement services division.
    • Created the “blueprint” for a product strategy framework, including the technology and product roadmap, business and pricing models, vendor strategy, team development, and supporting processes.
    • Led a team to design/develop innovative products for our clients in the financial, mobile, and retail markets.
    • Led the research analysts in on-going BI efforts to serve clients and guide strategy/product—using the leading edge options to decrease the cost and improve speed to delivery.
    • Managed the vendor relationships and outsourcing partners by creating/maintaining a vendor scorecard and tiers.
    • Acted as a member of the M&A advisory board to the leadership team.
  • Senior Manager, Product Management

    2008 - 2011
    MTS Allstream
    • Handled the complete ownership of the Cisco, Microsoft, and video conferencing product lines.
    • Drove $50 million of annual revenue as well as high margin targets and growth.
    • Created a strategic vision and comprehensive business case (NPV, IRR/MIRR, ROI, payback, and so on).
    • Managed large vendors—establishing close strategic partnerships with Microsoft, Cisco, Nortel, Mitel, and so on.
    • Created sales training content by mentoring sales personnel of the product values/benefits and helping the sales team master the ROI, value propositions and elevator pitches.
  • Director, Product Management and Development

    2006 - 2008
    Mapfusion Corporation
    • Acted as the departmental director of 18 resources (PMs, developers, testers, tech writer, including an offsite Indian office).
    • Balanced the departmental budget and was responsible for staffing, employee reviews, employee career growth, and training.
    • Brought a major product launch to fruition that has been over one year late—saving the company credibility and brand identity.
    • Researched and implemented a go-to-market strategic plan with a detailed snapshot of the market demographics, potential market share (revenue), and market verticals to attack.
    • Constructed 18-month roadmaps and PRD.
    • Designed the next generation of product interface and functionality.
    • Project managed three consecutive product launches with a budget of $2+ million each.
  • Program Manager

    2003 - 2006
    • Acted as the release manager for voice services 1.1 going live ahead of schedule, successfully avoiding antitrust violations by separating functionality of MSN Messenger from Windows Messenger.
    • Lobbied and received an executive buy-in through an internal campaign that met the needs of marketing/sales team and product team—allowing key messenger features to be launched in version 6 and 6.2.
    • Led a team of nine in R&D to track schedule and triage bugs, finishing 30 pages of detailed design specifications under 36 hours.
    • Acted as the primary contact for a partnership launch campaign with Bell, British Telecom, and Callserve for MSN Voice Services—successfully launching Voice-to-PC subscription calling via MSN Messenger.

Project History

  • MSN Messenger Voice and Webcam Services
    Launched MSN voice and video services during version 6-6.2 which enabled our users to have PC-to-PC VoIP calling and video.

    1. Project managed the MSN voice and webcam team.
    2. Coordinated with partners (Logitech, Bell, Callserve) to make sure their network and hardware would work seamlessly with MSN as well as support the business partnership terms.
    3. Designed the main technical and UX features of those services.
    4. Managed the release of those services on schedule and budget.

  • Lending Simulation Platform/App for the Largest Bank in Canada
    Launched Barometer, a lending simulation platform/app for RBC's underwriting/adjudication team across Canada.

    1. Led the D+H lab from ideation to launch of this project, including design, project management, and release management.
    2. Worked closely with RBC partners to integrate their data and systems.
    3. Put together the training/maintenance plan for RBC to administrate internally.

  • My Advisor | Financial and Retirement Planning App for 5 Million Users
    Created, developed, & launched MyAdvisor—the first & only digital team in Royal Bank that goes to production every two weeks.

    1. Worked with the leadership team and customers to create the blueprint, product vision, and strategy.
    2. Led the product team in writing user stories and core features.
    3. Project managed the release using Agile/Scrum method/tools.
    4. Successfully launched the product and went to production every two weeks with new features/fixes; was the first team in RBC to accomplish that.
    5. Converted a user base from 0 to over 100,000 within three months and to 500,000 within one year.


  • Bachelor of Applied Science Degree in Computer Engineering
    1998 - 2002
    University of Waterloo - Waterloo, Canada


  • Certified Scrum Master

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