Oana Ciherean, Project Manager in Tokyo, Japan
Oana Ciherean

Project Manager in Tokyo, Japan

Member since December 6, 2016
Oana has over ten years of experience in managing software projects on multiple platforms, delivering successfully a wide range of applications, from award-winning mobile games to large enterprise systems. She can easily learn a business domain, having worked in finance, healthcare, gaming, and education. The mix of her managerial, technical, and people skills allow her to adapt easily to different cultures, contexts, and teams.
Oana is now available for hire

Project Highlights

Education

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Employment

  • Technical Project Manager | Agile Coach

    2018 - PRESENT
    Toptal Projects
    • Managed software development projects in different stages for Toptal clients, overseeing, project roadmap, architecture, and engineering practices.
    • Created custom agile development processes for enterprise and startup clients from real estate, legal, healthcare, education, and telecom.
    • Coached client teams in implementing agile practices in their companies.
    • Identified quality attributes of the systems to be built and coordinated quality assurance activities.
    • Consulted clients on and created documentation for product and technical requirements.
    • Coordinated project discovery phases, estimations, created plans, resource allocations, budgets, and project roadmaps.
    • Designed software and solution architectures for web-based and mobile systems.
    • Performed management and technical quality audits of existing projects, identified root causes of problems, and created project recovery or improvement plans.
  • CEO/CTO

    2014 - PRESENT
    Dalia's Book
    • Designed the technical solution of the company's education platform as integration between WordPress web technologies and G Suite apps.
    • Built the organization from the ground up, defining business and go-to-market strategies and managing daily operations. The company was a finalist twice for “Best Social Impact Startup” at Central European Startup Awards.
    • Managed the company's product release plan, testing technical solutions through prototypes and MVPs.
    • Defined a new model of a hybrid non and for-profit organizational structure customizing Porter's Value chain (team, roles, and responsibilities) and hired a diverse team: tech, marketing, fundraising, and programs.
    • Created a framework for tracking impact based on the OKR framework.
  • Project Manager

    2016 - 2017
    Evozon Game Studio
    • Managed the game roadmap across the entire software lifecycle: prototyping, production, alpha, and beta testing, and update releases, setting market-relevant milestones.
    • Released two award-winning casual mobile games featured by Apple.
    • Designed a new agile process as a mix of Scrum, Kanban, and the classic Game Production Process and shortened the production cycle from two and a half years to 10 months.
    • Created internal processes for product documentation, demos, reviews, and alpha and beta testing.
    • Performed marketing benchmark analysis for mobile games strategy to define a go-to-market plan for new games.
    • Coordinated two teams of ten members each: developers, 2D and 3D artists, and marketers.
  • Technical Project Manager / Tech Lead

    2010 - 2016
    Nagarro (former iQuest Technologies)
    • Designed the architecture of multiple 3-tier enterprise systems powered by search and business rules engines with: .NET Framework, ASP.NET, Solr, SQL Server, REST API, and Azure Service Bus. The systems were deployed in more than 40 countries.
    • Coordinated three teams ranging in total from eight to 12 people of software engineers, QA testers, UI/UX designers, and third-level support.
    • Created and coordinated processes to enforce deliverable quality: code reviews, audits, architecture reviews, source control, deployments, and environments.
    • Designed the automated testing architecture for back-end services.
    • Created a development process as a mix of a V-Model waterfall process and agile Scrum methods.
    • Created processes for product and technical documentation following high regulatory standards needed in healthcare. The documentation included product requirements, software architecture, quality, and traceability.
    • Decreased system infrastructure and maintenance costs by a factor of five by designing the software architecture of web systems deployed in more than 40 countries worldwide.
    • Coordinated estimation activities, and managed the budget, project release roadmap and development.
    • Mentored seven software engineers, created development plans, and performed annual performance evaluations.
    • Conducted technical interviews and improved the interview process.
  • Career Management Lead

    2014 - 2015
    Nagarro (former iQuest Technologies)
    • Defined career tracks, role descriptions, and KPIs for software and third-level support engineers in a department of 130 people.
    • Defined performance KPIs and metrics and drove the bi-annual assessment review sessions.
    • Identified root causes for client problems due to missing critical engineering skills and created a framework for learning and development that was implemented in the entire department.
    • Created and implemented a department-wide professional development strategy that increased employee satisfaction and decreased turnover.
    • Mentored a group of 30 technical career managers to align to the needs of the employees and improve performance.
    • Drove the department-level change of performance management processes and alignment with other departments.
    • Created interview guidelines, promotion criteria, and onboarding and offboarding processes.
    • Took ownership of performance management KPIs and metrics as part of a leadership team for the Microsoft solutions department, of 130 engineers.
    • Reviewed and contributed to career tracks and role descriptions of management and quality assurance departments.
  • .NET Project Manager

    2008 - 2010
    UMT CG Software
    • Coordinated eight software developers for the first release of UMT 360 (​UMT 360​ Enterprise Portfolio Management system was previously part of Microsoft Project Portfolio Management (PPM) Solutions).
    • Created processes for source control, unit testing, issue tracking, code reviews, and deployments.
    • Created development schedules, tracked progress, and created reports.
    • Validated and provided information for test cases and plans.
    • Designed and developed SharePoint, Workflow Foundation, and OLAP components.

Project History

  • Engineering Restructuring for Telecommunications Enterprise
    Designed team structure, career tracks, and role descriptions to enable the software engineering department of an enterprise company to scale its operations.

    In my role as a restructuring consultant, I had to design a new team structure and engineering management processes for the software engineering department of the company, with the goal of enabling scaling up their technical operations.

    I created new career tracks, role descriptions, technical KPIs, and a performance assessment framework for both individual contributors and people managers: software engineers, test engineers, DevOps, engineering managers, and project managers.

    My role also involved analyzing and improving the company's software delivery processes and creating a new agile SDLC.

  • Enterprise Document Search Platform for Healthcare (Roche Gmbh)
    Delivered five releases of a web enterprise product over four years for healthcare users in over 40 countries worldwide.

    Designed a web platform architecture for users in 40 countries, that decreased the infrastructure and maintenance costs by a factor of five.

    Coordinated a team of software engineers, software testers, and UI/UX designers in activities like wireframing, prototyping, engineering, unit, system, and automated testing.

    Customized the client's V-Model waterfall process with Agile methods for engineering flexibility. Organized Scrum demos and daily standup meetings.

    Created product release map and time and material contracts, and monitored the costs.

    Coordinated the product releases involving technical and user acceptance testing activities, made sure the process required documentation was in place (traceability matrixes and testing reports), and created final release reports.

    Created and monitored technical processes for code reviews, unit testing, continuous integration, and delivery.

    Created the manual and automated testing strategy.

    Mentored team members and performed yearly performance evaluations, establishing the next steps according to the project's needs.

    Technologies used: .NET Framework, C#, ASP.NET MVC, JavaScript, HTML 5, Solr, REST APIs, Windows Service Bus, SQL Server, Windows Services, ETL

  • Enterprise On-Demand Software Update Platform (Roche Gmbh)
    Delivered a web-based enterprise platform for offline clients in 10+ countries in North America, South America, and Africa.

    Coordinated a team of 5-10 software engineers and testers to release a 3-tier enterprise web platform.

    Customized the client's V-Model waterfall process with Agile methods for engineering flexibility. Organized Scrum demos and daily standup meetings.

    Coordinated the product releases involving technical and user acceptance testing activities, made sure the process required documentation was in place (traceability matrixes and testing reports), and created final release reports.

    Created and monitored technical processes for code reviews, unit testing, continuous integration, and delivery.

    Mentored team members and performed yearly performance evaluations, establishing the next steps according to the project's needs.

    Technologies used: .NET Framework, C#, ASP.NET MVC, JavaScript, HTML5, SQL Server, Windows Services, ETL

  • Enterprise Portal Front-end Migration
    Created the technical migration plan and structure for a portal front end from Ruby on Rails to React.

    I managed the first phase of the migration of an enterprise web portal from legacy Ruby on Rails architecture and implementation to React and GraphQL microservices. I created the structure and managed the remote team of ten contractor engineers around the world.

  • E-Learning Platform Extension (edraak.org)
    Delivered a new component for the edraak.org MOOC platform that adds language learning support to the online courses.

    Coordinated the discovery lightning start phase, created the product backlog, project timeline, and deployment milestones and the team structure and allocation plan.

    Supervised the development team of UI/UX designers and engineers that delivered a new component for language learning support, written in React and Node.js on the platform.

    Edraak is a massive open online course platform supported by the Queen Rania Foundation in Jordan.

  • Internal Document Management Tool on Atlassian
    Created agile processes, managed the front-end engineering team, and provided technical guidance on architecture.

    I managed a team of front-end engineers for an internal tool that provided document management and approval automation; the system was built as an extension of Atlassian Confluence and was written in React and Node.js.

    The project started from scratch, and I was responsible with creating the initial timeline, budget, recruiting the team and documenting the product and technical requirements; I also provided technical guidance to the team on how to architect the system and find solutions to complex issues that appear when developing web applications.

  • UMT 360 Version 1
    Led software engineering for the first version of UMT 360, previously a part of Microsoft Project and Portfolio Server.

    Coordinated eight software developers for the first release of UMT 360 (UMT 360​ Enterprise Portfolio Management Web system was previously part of Microsoft Project Portfolio Management (PPM) Solutions).

    Designed architecture of software components, workflows, and data analysis modules for a financial management web platform.

    Documented and analyzed requirements, transformed them into technical tasks, and performed backlog grooming and prioritization.

    Created development processes for code review, source control, and bug and issue tracking.

    Technologies used: Microsoft SharePoint, Microsoft Server, JavaScript, C#, .NET Framework, SQL Server, SQL Analysis Services, OLAP Cubes, Workflow Foundation

  • JIRA Migration
    Consulted the Toptal core team in implementing their product and engineering processes using JIRA and Confluence.

    Toptal is an exclusive network of top freelance talent.

    In my role as a JIRA subject matter expert, I helped the Toptal core team implement their internal product and engineering processes using JIRA and Confluence from the Atlassian suite. I acted as an SME and JIRA/Confluence administrator and consulted the teams on how to migrate their data from old tools.

  • Agile Coach for Medical/Legal Startup
    Coached the project manager of medlex.ai in how to organize the development of their product using agile practices.

    As an Agile coach and advisor for Medlex.AI, I helped the project manager to plan and organize the startup's engineering efforts of building an MVP and manage a remote team by using Agile Scrum.

  • Disco Dave
    Disco Dave was featured by Apple and received the "Best Kids and Family Game" award at Casual Connect, TelAviv, 2016.

    Managed a team of ten software developers, 2D and 3D artists, game designers, testers, and marketers for ten months to release Disco Dave, a mobile game produced under the AmusedSloth brand.

    Disco Dave was featured by Apple and received the "Best Kids and Family Game" award at Casual Connect, TelAviv, 2016.

    Created the entire game roadmap, decided on the major milestones, and coordinated the production activities, from the prototype, alpha and beta testing sessions to the main release and then subsequent update releases.

    Established KPIs, defined art and game development processes as a mix of Kanban and Scrum, and created project documentation templates, reducing, as a result, the production process in the studio from 2.5 years to 10 months. The game was the studio's first one that broke even, reducing the loss that the studio had with the previous titles.

    The game was developed in Unity 3D and released worldwide on iOS, Android, Windows Phone, and Fire OS, and in local stores in China and Japan.

  • Super Pet Hero
    Super Pet Hero is a mobile game that received the "Best Mobile Game" award at Casual Connect in 2017, Berlin.

    Managed a team of 10 software developers, 2D and 3D artists, game designers, testers, and marketers to release Super Pet Hero, a mobile game produced under the AmusedSloth brand.

    Super Pet Hero is a mobile game that received the "Best Mobile Game" award at Casual Connect in 2017, Berlin.

    Created the entire game roadmap, decided on the major milestones, and coordinated the production activities, from the prototype, alpha, and beta testing sessions to the main release and the subsequent update releases.

    Established KPIs, defined art and game development processes as a mix of Kanban and Scrum, and created project documentation templates, reducing, as a result, the production process in the studio from 2.5 years to 1 year.

    The game was developed in Unity 3D and released worldwide on iOS, Android, Windows Phone, and in local stores from China.

  • Dalia's Book
    Founded a technology non-profit named the Best Social Impact Startup in Romania at the Central European Startup Awards, 2018.

    Created an edtech non-profit organization from the ground up, establishing digital product strategy and roadmap, operational processes, building digital marketing and fundraising strategies, and setting and measuring KPIs.

    Created concepts, benchmarks, roadmaps and managed the planning and implementation of digital projects and prototypes such as mobile educational games and educational web platforms, in diverse and versatile teams of two to ten members with different backgrounds like marketers, UI/UX designers, software developers, educators, and business developers.

    Created two nation-wide education programs implemented in over 30 schools in urban and rural Romania in just three years.

    Coordinated a remote team of five to ten people and over 50 volunteers in six cities in Romania to implement both software projects and educational programs.

Education

  • Master's degree in Computer Science
    2010 - 2012
    Technical University of Cluj Napoca - Cluj Napoca, Romania
  • Bachelor's degree in Computer Science
    2005 - 2010
    Technical University of Cluj Napoca - Cluj Napoca, Romania

Certifications

  • PMP Certification Training
    JANUARY 2017 - PRESENT
    PM Access
  • Design of Serious Games
    JANUARY 2016 - PRESENT
    University of Tallinn
  • Evolutionary Project Management
    JANUARY 2013 - PRESENT
    Gilb Academy
  • Certified Scrum Master
    NOVEMBER 2012 - PRESENT
    Scrum Alliance

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