Michael Mihai Diaconescu
Verified Expert in Project Management
Mihai is a seasoned program and project manager and transformation consultant with extensive experience in digital transformation, process optimization, automation, software development, and technology integration. He strategically navigates change and manages senior relationships within tier-1 banks, global blue-chip companies, and startups. He restructures troubled projects, solves problems, and devises operating models and agile methodologies, fostering collaboration and long-term success.
Senior Program and Project Manager of Mergers and Acquisitions
- Streamlined due diligence and day-one operations integration at Reward Gateway for a recent corporate acquisition across business, operations, and technology (Salesforce, Oracle NetSuite, custom platforms).
- Achieved 30% faster project delivery through strategic agility, optimizing requirements, dependencies, risks, and roles. Led a high-performing 30+ team, streamlined workstreams, and pioneered agile PMO practices.
- Implemented procedures and tools for capturing lessons learned and integrating those in the continual improvement process. Created blueprints for anticipated future initiatives.
- Created training materials and trained and coached teams on project management best practices for Agile, Waterfall, and Hybrid methodologies. Worked with vendors to implement Jira BigPicture and Deep Clone and roll them out to the teams.
Program Director, Digital Transformation
- Led impactful business growth and operational streamlining through strategic digital transformation and process optimization across diverse industries (finance, healthcare, retail, manufacturing, food).
- Consulted clients on cloud migration strategies to achieve higher scalability, versatility, security, and reliability levels. Devised transformation strategies by validating change ideas via POCs and MVPs.
- Championed cutting-edge solutions with cloud computing, robust process automation, centralized data management, dynamic applications leveraging Azure, Amazon AWS, and platforms such as Dynamics ERP/Business Central, CRM, Power Platform, and Office365.
- Built foundations for reliable service delivery by designing and optimizing processes and systems for managing SLAs, high availability, backup, disaster recovery, and business continuity in public-private cloud architectures.
- Designed and helped clients implement and optimize SDLC, Agile, DevOps, CI/CD, and Quality Assurance by integrating on-prem, cloud, and hybrid operations, production support, and operating models.
Transformation Program Manager
Portman Dental Care
- Drove 35% efficiency and expedited a 2-year-old backlog delivery via digital transformation and a new operating model for Business Insights after a corporate merger, including E2E demand management, ITSM, Agile, and Jira.
- Managed the vendor selection process for a new ERP system for finance, procurement and inventory, offices and associates, HR, payroll, and workflow management (MS D365, SAP S/4HANA, Sage X3, Oracle NetSuite, Epicor).
- Drove the company-wide development of governance, procedures, and tools for quality assurance, data strategy, and the single source of truth for data to enable fast and reliable access to information and cut risk for ill-informed decisions.
Senior Digital Transformation Programme Manager | Content Delivery Director
- Led and directed digital content delivery initiatives at Culture Trip, boosting time-to-market by 270%, overseeing end-to-end development of a multi-million digital asset management platform, and fostering strategic partnerships.
- Completed the company-wide business discovery successfully and defined the roadmap for digital transformation. Led the creation of the AWS cloud-based OpenText Media Management DAM and IPV Curator online video editing platform.
- Secured the CXO support and generated 30% operational efficiencies by automating workflows and integrating CMS, DAM, video editing, stock photography websites, Monday.com, contractor management, finance, CMS, and global content distribution.
- Boosted requirements and development efficiency and quality by successfully coaching the user community and development team on Agile Scrum and Behavior-Driven Development (BDD) principles and methodology in the UK, US, Israel, and China offices.
Senior Program Manager and Transformation Consultant
- Headhunted to remodel and digitize service management processes, achieving corporate IT&O efficiencies 30%+ and 99% service availability via global Agile, DevOps, ITSM transformation via ServiceNow, and novel risk mitigation AI platform.
- Worked as an agile scrum master for the successful development of an artificial intelligence platform integrated with ServiceNow for ITSM automation that boosted service availability to the 99% expected threshold.
- Managed cross-functional teams, vendors, and consultancies. Chaired executive meetings and troubleshot issues and progress reports. Reported to COO and SVP levels.
Senior Digital Project Manager
- Spearheaded the £6.5 million project for digital transformation, centralizing £3+ million in assets from 20+ legacy systems in nine countries (acquisition integrations) and successfully rolling out efficiencies to 1,000+ offices and stores.
- Revamped E2E process workflows and operating models, integrating SAP BS HANA, Riversand PIM, OpenText DAM, Adobe Commerce web eCommerce platform, suppliers, and digital media agencies, achieving seamless integration and optimization.
- Created and managed Agile and hybrid plans integrating all workstreams. Implemented and coached Agile, behavior-driven development (BDD), QA, and DevOps frameworks across a global team. Influenced and negotiated with stakeholders, CXO, and MD.
- Conducted business discovery and analysis. Performed multiple vendor assessments, bidding, selection, and contract negotiation (achieved a 35% discount on the largest deal) and managed the end-to-end contract lifecycle.
Senior Management Consultant
- Orchestrated the dynamic launch of a startup wellness venture, crafting a robust business model, efficient management structure, impactful financial, legal, HR, and marketing plans, and strong online presence.
- Led the hands-on design and agile development of a responsive web eCommerce platform and mobile application with complex booking and account management, coupons, loyalty tiers, API integration with SMS, address mapping, and geolocation.
- Created 40% efficiencies by employing lean startup techniques like behavior-driven development (BDD), creating incremental MVPs, split-testing, and validated learning to expedite the process and minimize costs.
- Selected proficiently, hired, and managed local and off-shore vendors and partners. Created business and operations strategy. Designed and implemented the target operating model (TOM).
Senior Program Manager and Transformation Consultant
- Achieved 12% savings on the £180 million global markets IT&O budget via new PMO, SDLC, ITSM governance, roles, organization, and tools for a global digital process transformation deployed to 1,500+ users across the company's EU, US, and Asia offices.
- Successfully worked with stakeholders and optimized processes for Agile Hybrid project and product management, architecture, development, release, change, incident, problem, service management, procurement, vendors, asset, and resource management.
- Monitored a portfolio of strategic multi-million programs for regulatory initiatives, FI, derivatives, P&L, credit, risk, F2B, and e-markets to pilot the adoption and early feedback of the new processes and tools.
Senior Program Manager
BMO Bank of Montreal
- Restructured a failing $22 million fixed-income acquisition program at BMO Financial Group that was already 110% over budget, with web-based front-to-back STP integration, complex business intelligence analytics, and live reporting to regulators.
- Delivered early and saved the bank $150,000 on a multi-million program, enabling corporate lending to seize the opportunity and enter the US car dealership financing business following the automotive financing disarray in 2009.
- Reduced operational risk by 27% and operational cost by 12% by automating the back-office processes for deal routing between bookings for FX options deals, monitored positions, P&L, and risk with bookings for FX hedge deals in the US and Canada.
- Decreased operational risk by 18% and drove 11% cost savings via digitization and automation of the straight-through-processing (STP) capabilities for back-office processes for wholesale banking product operations.
- Managed 17 project managers and functional managers responsible for teams of more than 60 internal resources, two consulting firms (including Big Four), and more than ten vendors in New York, Chicago, and Toronto.
Senior Program Manager, Business Insights
- Led a top critical initiative at Toyota Motors for addressing hidden issues and fault trends in the car manufacturing process via business intelligence and data analytics following a series of dramatic car failures under US federal investigations.
- Developed a complex business intelligence platform based on a centralized data warehouse and custom ETL processes for importing data from manufacturing, dealerships, and service centers across the globe.
- Successfully fast-tracked the project and delivered the key benefits by leveraging Toyota's signature Kaizen methodology to generate and manage agile plans with a multitude of cross-divisional teams.
Senior Project Manager
RBC Capital Markets
- Rescued and delivered a struggling $17 million global asset management web portal program by restructuring scope, adopting new development methodologies, reorganizing and integrating 10+ teams, seven vendors, and three consultancies (including Big Four).
- Boosted software delivery by 25% by implementing and optimizing agile and ITIL processes, project management, business analysis, QA, and change management. United a cross-divisional team across corporate cultures in Canada and Luxembourg.
- Created and negotiated strategic plans and chaired steering committees, including SVP, CIO, and COO.
Senior Project and Delivery Manager
BMO Bank of Montreal
- Generated $240,000 savings for a $3.7 million business intelligence ITSM platform for reporting, analysis, and dashboard capabilities on project and program management, ITIL processes, service desk, and ATM's.
- Created a collaborative culture based on meritocracy principles across 11 cross-functional teams of 40+ people, six vendors, and two Big Four consultancies.
- Accelerated delivery time whilst reducing risk by coaching teams and deploying agile practices for solution development and software release in a CMMI level 4 framework (ISO9001).
- Saved $750,000 in a $12 million industry-first loyalty rewards web-based platform for the Amex Travel Business, allowing flight and hotel bookings, managing 17 teams of 140+ people, 15+ vendors, and three consultancies in North America and Europe.
- Met regulatory mandates and avoided major penalties for the bank by delivering an aggressive timeline for a $9 million program for implementing user access management processes and technologies required by Sarbanes-Oxley regulations in 30+ countries.
- Presented to, negotiated, and influenced stakeholders and executive committee members, including SVP, CIO, COO, and MD.
Senior Business Analyst and Project Manager
- Led the hands-on design and development of a web-based flagship business intelligence suite positioned as a niche market leader against competitive platforms like Cognos, Microstrategy, and Business Objects.
- Gained a competitive advantage over rival platforms, driving $2.5 million in revenue in 2004.
- Managed a team of nine consisting of designers, developers, and testers, overseeing scope, schedule, cost, quality, risk, and change throughout the project.
Senior Business Development Manager
- Crafted the winning business plan, landing 1st place in Microsoft's top sales in Romania in 2001. Championed the open system license program nationwide, achieving 37% market share and growing revenues by 320%.
- Involved directly in the end-to-end sales lifecycle, successfully securing large corporate and government accounts.
- Managed a team of six, devising business development and sales strategies. Created an environment of a winning attitude and continual improvement, developing individual skills and strengthening team collaboration.
- Managed a sales team of four and was responsible for the development and implementation of various sales and marketing strategies.
- Developed and managed large customer accounts, expanding the solutions portfolio and introducing new technologies.
- Successfully managed the Y2K campaign and increased revenue by 270% in the years 1999-2000.
Digital Transformation, Cloud-based DAM, Online Video Editing and Post Production Processinghttp://www.culturetrip.com
Accelerated content delivery time-to-market by 270% and significantly reduced operational, reputational and legal risks.
After I completed the business discovery and identified the objectives (OKRs) and gaps, I assembled a team. I defined the company-wide roadmap for digital transformation and process automation for end-to-end content delivery.
My work started with a multi-vendor assessment and selection, RFP, and contract negotiation. Once the platform was contracted, my team and I planned and executed the implementation of the top-class AWS cloud-based OpenText Media Management DAM (digital asset management) and the IPV Curator online video editing and post-production processing platform.
In parallel, I designed and managed the delivery of the end-to-end process automation and application integration across DAM, video editing, stock photography websites (Getty, Alamy), project management tools (Monday.com), voice recognition, and artificial intelligence (AWS, OpenText Magellan), CMS (WordPress), CDN (CloudFront, JW Player), social media (Facebook, Instagram, YouTube), and communication channels (Gmail, Slack).
Online Travel Booking and Cards (Client Membership and Loyalty Rewards)
Achieved $750,000 in savings using Agile methodologies on a $12 million world-first credit card rewards and travel program.
Managed 11 project managers, 17 teams of 140+ people, 15+ vendors, three consulting firms, and seven external business partners in the US, Canada, UK, Italy, and France.
Saved the company $750,000 through the adoption of Agile methodology for SDLC.
Digital Asset Management Platform (DAM) Development and Integration with ERP and PIM
Delivered a cloud-based £6.5 million asset management platform and digitized 3+ million digital assets across 1,000+ stores in nine countries. Optimized E2E process workflows and an operating model and integrated with ERP and PIM.
I remodeled and optimized E2E process workflows and the operating model (TOM) to support the full integration of finance, S2P, P2P, product management (SAP BS HANA), product information (Riversand PIM), digital asset management (OpenText Media Manager DAM), eCommerce platform (ATG), all Kingfisher vendors, marketing agencies and digital media agencies.
I also implemented Agile and DevOps, enabling SDLC and release speed and best-in-class application flows with a focus on UX-centric customer journeys.
Process Automation, Digital Transformation, Application Development for Electrical Engineering Co.
Generated 28% efficiencies at a leading electrical engineering company by digitizing and automating processes via Dynamics 365 and a mobile app for field engineers, fleet management, and warehouse inventory.
Agile Fixed Income Technology Web Platform Development and Integrationhttps://www.bmocm.com/
Rescued and delivered (a month early) a behind-schedule, over-budget fixed-income business and IT migration program.
• Restructured and executed a $22 million Agile model fixed income acquisition program at BMO Financial Group, developing and delivering a platform that integrated 20+ systems.
• Managed 60+ resources, two Big Four consultancies, and 10+ vendors in NY, Chicago, and Toronto.
• Implemented front-, mid-, and back-office STP integration in compliance with strict FINRA regulations.
• Implemented a complex $1.8 million business intelligence suite for reporting and analytics on underwriting, client deals, P&L, and portfolios.
Financial Asset Management Platform Development and Integrationhttp://funds.rbcgam.com/
Revived, restructured, and delivered a troubled merger program and united a divided team from two corporate cultures.
Roadmapped and spearheaded the delivery of the end-to-end solution using Agile SDLC, integrating front-, mid-, and back-office.
Digital Loan Management Platform for Car Dealership Financinghttps://www.bmo.com/main/business/loans-mortgages/overview
Delivered early and saved $150,000 via Agile and UX/CE tuning.
Operating Model and E2E Program Management for M&A at HR Services Co.
Streamlined and delivered an end-to-end integration program for a recent corporate acquisition at Reward Gateway, an HR company. Created a new TOM, processes, and tools to enable the company to complete acquisitions in the future successfully.
Client-focused Digital Operations Transformation | Agile and DevOps Implementationhttps://group.bnpparibas/en/
Achieved +30% IT and operations efficiencies via a global process framework transformation to a 1,500+ employee organization.
Digitized service management tickets and process flows, bringing cohesion to data-driven decisions, generating +30% efficiencies in IT and operations.
Digital Transformation for Agile, DevOps and ITSM Operating Modelhttps://group.bnpparibas/en/
Achieved 12% in budget savings in IT/Operations by rolling out a global process transformation and adopting Agile and DevOps principles.
Successfully defined process and coordinated the creation of a £150+ million Global Markets ITO budget. Implemented business intelligence for reporting and analyzing financial forecasts, effort, headcount, offshoring, vendors, and P&L.
New ERP System Discovery and Vendor Selection
Completed the process mapping and requirements documentation for a new ERP system at Portman Dental. Managed the RFP process and led vendor interviews and product demos with key stakeholders.
Startup Wellness Business and Technology Platform
Delivered a state-of-the-art digital platform for a startup wellness business.
Effectively employed lean startup techniques like creating incremental MVPs, split-testing, and validated learning. Selected, hired, and managed local and offshore IT providers, copywriters, legal and financial advisers, suppliers, and digital marketing agencies required to launch the company.
Successfully delivered the UX design and agile development of a responsive digital application with complex booking and account management, coupons, rewards scheme, loyalty tiers, API integration with SMS, address lookup, and geolocation.
ITSM Artificial Intelligence Platformhttps://group.bnpparibas/en/
Improved corporate production operations efficiencies by more than 30%.
The artificial intelligence platform supported the ITSM automation that boosted service availability to 99% and reduced support efforts by 30%.
The tool monitored over 200 systems and data feeds from all bank divisions in London, Paris, New York, Brussels, Hong Kong, Singapore, and Mumbai.
ServiceNow Implementation and ITSM Digitalizationhttps://group.bnpparibas/en/
Successful restructuring and delivery of a troubled ServiceNow implementation project. Shifted focus to the user experience (UX).
Enabled the digitalization of development and operations activities through full integration with the Jira system, bringing cohesion to data-driven decisions while optimizing performance and the UX/client experience.
Business Intelligence, Data Analytics, ETL, and Data Warehousing Platform Development
Led a top critical initiative for addressing hidden issues and fault trends by creating a BI data analytics platform that provided centralized insight into data from suppliers, production and assembly lines, dealerships, and service centers.
Business Intelligence Reporting and Data Warehousinghttps://www.bmo.com/main/business/
Generated $240,000 in savings via Agile and delivered three weeks ahead of schedule.
Managed 11 internal teams (40+ resources), six vendors, and two consulting firms (including Big Four) in a cross-functional/matrix environment in Toronto and Montreal.
Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) Regulatory Compliance Process and Tech Platformhttps://www.americanexpress.com/
Directed the timely delivery of a very aggressive schedule for rolling-out SOX regulations in 40+ countries.
Developed and implemented security controls for access rights to 130+ American Express and Ameriprise Financial systems distributed in 40+ countries on five continents worldwide.
Business Intelligence Reporting and Analytics Platform Development
Created an under $100,000 BI solution for small and medium enterprises to compete with major players like Cognos, Business Objects, Informatica, and Microstrategy.
I played a key role in defining sales plans and marketing strategies specific to the company's target niche market segment.
Prince2 Foundation in Project Management
Advantage Learning - Toronto, Canada
CMMI Fundamentals in Software Development Management
BMO Academy - Toronto, Canada
ITIL Foundation in IT Service Management
BMO Academy - Toronto, Canada
Project Management Professional Coursework in Project Management
Project Management Institute (PMI) - Toronto, Canada
Bachelor of Science with Honours in Computer Engineering
Polytechnic University of Timisoara - Timisoara, Romania
DA - Disciplined Agilist
Disciplined Agile Consortium
CSM - Certified Scrum Master
PMP - Project Management Professional
Project Management Institute (PMI)