Philip Kappaz, Project Manager in Frisco, TX, United States
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Philip Kappaz

Verified Expert  in Project Management

Project Manager

Frisco, TX, United States
Toptal Member Since
June 1, 2020

Phil is an accomplished Agile coach and a program and project manager with an extensive background in service delivery, software development, data integrations, and system implementations. His notable clients include Neiman Marcus, FedEx, and Southwest Airlines. His certifications in SAFe and CSM, combined with his years of experience, give Phil the ability to adapt to new verticals (retail, biometrics, insurance, and health care), environments, and organizations and deliver results quickly.

Project Highlights

Biometrics Identity Program for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Planned and managed the software development, hardware integration, testing, training, and deployment logistics for a multi-million dollar, 4-year program with a team of 50 professionals reporting to me,
Customer Data Platform Implementation for Neiman Marcus
Managed the implementation of a SaaS CDP product and integrations to it for 20+ data streams (in-house and external) for a major retailer, delivering it ahead of the aggressive schedule and under budget.
Pediatric Asthma Mobile Application for Parkland Hospital
Managed the development of a pediatric mobile app for phones and tablets with integrations to a predictive analytics engine used to track and provide direct communications between doctors and patients.


Work Experience

Senior Agile Project Manager

2018 - PRESENT
Neiman Marcus
  • Performed as a Scrum Master for five teams utilizing Scrum, Kanban, and SAFe. As a CSM, I managed the teams and scrum ceremonies, reported to leadership, and trained them on the Agile approaches and techniques.
  • Managed the implementation of a SaaS customer data platform (CDP) using the AIQ platform, which involved significant data integration with legacy systems, data analytics teams, internal groups, and external vendors.
  • Participated in a significant technology transformation initiative for the marketing division by leading the CDP team. Our approach and processes became models for other scrum teams in the initiative.
  • Built Jira projects and artifacts and trained the electronic data warehouse and customer master data teams on scrum processes for their work.
  • Completed the initial implementation ahead of the three-month schedule, allowing the marketing team to utilize the tool and technology earlier than planned.
  • Won the company-wide "Best of" award given to the team that impacted the company's growth most during the fiscal year.
  • Contributed to the teams that primarily coded and supported the online commerce sites, including content, search and browse, and mobile app capabilities.
  • Trained team members on Atlassian products as necessary, including Jira, Confluence, and Structure.
  • Acted as the Agile coach for the product team and other members new to Agile and Scrum. This included bringing them up to speed with SAFe practices and how we implement them at NMG.

Project Manager

2022 - 2022
Carrier - Residential - Mobile Apps Product Management
  • Joined the team as an Agile coach and project manager to get control of the development of an app that was having serious trouble. Implemented and documented agile processes where there were none and trained the teams on their use.
  • Brought together three key technology teams into weekly touch base meetings; this had never been done before, greatly improved communications and set expectations, and gave visibility to other teams' priorities.
  • Introduced release schedule process. Before this, there was no release process or schedule; this was set up in Confluence to be visible to many people in the enterprise.
  • Moved the QA team to an integrated test management tool called XRAY.
  • Documented all Agile processes in Confluence for visibility across the enterprise; this included the entire Scrum process, testing and defect management, and release process.

Agile Project Manager

2021 - 2022
  • Led a team from a Word document of planned features through the creation of a full Agile practice using Jira and other technologies to manage the workload.
  • Set up the Atlassian Jira instance, including projects, boards, users, Sprints, roadmaps, epic structure, and more. Educated the team in standard Agile practices and Atlassian tools.
  • Guided the team to complete the schedule and deliver a live portal and iOS/Android app on time. This included building the entire web service infrastructure, data, and automated testing system.
  • Delivered a web portal and mobile app (iOS/Android) that directly connected medical providers with autism patients. It provided automated feedback and analysis for both. It was designed to be implemented at medical facilities.
  • Helped the team set up the roadmap priorities and plan the delivery based on specific release requirements. The team was located throughout South America, Ukraine, India, Great Britain, Denmark, and the US.
  • Served as the Agile coach for the team that was new to Agile, Scrum, and Jira.

Agile Project Manager

2021 - 2022
  • Set up the new Atlassian Jira structure in the company's existing Jira instance, giving a stronger perspective to the teams on its purpose and moving forward.
  • Trained and coached the team in using standard scrum practices and Atlassian tools, like projects, boards, dashboards, sprints, etc., to support the development and rollout of their new NFT business model.
  • Held sessions to document requirements with the tech lead, CFO, and CEO and translated them into the initial set of stories for the company. Developed tracking tools using Notion and Google Sheets to support tasks related to NFT artist onboarding.
  • Collaborated on developing and launching several web capabilities related to minting and sale of NFT art for a community that they grew through Discord, Twitter, and other channels.
  • Acted as Agile Coach, bringing the team into the Agile Scrum world and getting them accustomed to Jira.

Senior Consultant and Project Manager for Cloud Migrations and IT Consulting

2016 - 2018
  • Managed multiple Microsoft Cloud (O365 and Azure) migration projects for clients in the Dallas–Fort Worth–Arlington area on-premises or hosted exchange migration to O365 and application migration to Azure.
  • Oversaw the development of a legacy POS system for a major retailer in Dallas, Texas, which included managing, coordinating, and scheduling updates with external vendors and keeping them within the change management boundaries of the retailer.
  • Handled updates and fixes to the legacy POS by following strict change control measures not to impact the business of 7,000 stores. Our team kept the legacy POS working with no downtime for over a year.
  • Supported the development of PMO processes and documentation for the Sparkhound Dallas office. Contributed to the sales efforts for new businesses by presenting to potential clients our capabilities and management approach.

Senior Project Manager for Enterprise Content Management Solutions

2016 - 2016
Imagine Solutions
  • Managed multiple ECM projects for clients around the US. Managed budgets, schedules, resources, plans, and forecasting using the MS Office suite and MS Project to develop schedules and track resources and progress.
  • Designed, coded, and implemented a PM dashboard tool. The single point of data entry allowed for increased reliability and accuracy of project data, and the enterprise approach provided greater transparency of project status to the leadership.
  • Assisted in establishing new PMO processes for the company following the PMI and standard Agile practices.

Senior Project Manager for Health Care Predictive Analytics

2013 - 2015
Parkland Center for Clinical Excellence
  • Managed a pediatric asthma program that tracked and recorded patients' asthma scores via mobile app (iOS/Android), stored them in a data analytics engine, completed predictive analytics, and provided insight to the patient and doctor via the app.
  • Established the quality management program for the development team, where we defined quality measures, metrics, and audits to prepare for the FDA's approval of PCCI products. Set up the Agile Scrum processes and ceremonies and trained the team.
  • Designed and developed a complex MS Access application for the vice president of finance. This application reduced the time to complete accounting payroll reconciliation between two systems from days to minutes.

Senior Project Manager for Retail Network Systems Support

2012 - 2013
FedEx Office
  • Acted as a team member of the network engagement office, managed projects, and provided status updates for the engagement office.
  • Managed several projects for the network engineering team, represented the team at the Demand Management Council, and provided updates and information as required.
  • Designed and developed a SharePoint and MS Access dashboard application to easily capture data from remote PMs and auto-format executive reports. This application cut down the elapsed time to create weekly reports for executives from days to minutes.

Senior Solutions Engineer for Biometrics Implementation for North Carolina DOT

2010 - 2012
  • Managed the communication and coordination of a geographically dispersed team—Tacoma, WA; Paris, France; Raleigh, NC; Anaheim, CA; Amsterdam, NE; Bogota, Colombia; and Tampa, FL—for a biometrics program for the State of North Carolina.
  • Implemented the Waterfall approach and later introduced the Agile methodology. Managed the project with MS Project to develop and monitor plans, progress, and resources. Trained the team on the Agile Scrum methodology and set up supporting ceremonies.
  • Managed the project schedules and provided the detailed status, issue and risk management support, and scope definition. Reported to the C-Level suite, senior management, and the steering committee.

National Engagement Manager for National Insurance Company

2010 - 2010
USI Insurance Services
  • Managed a service delivery organization of 25 remote support technicians and an 8-person help desk supporting 80 locations around the US.
  • Introduced processes to streamline activities and increased call throughput. Modified the reporting and performance monitoring, improving the customer satisfaction index by 30% within the first two months of managing the teams and processes.
  • Provided regular reports of help desk, site support performance metrics, and customer satisfaction survey results to the C-level suite.

Senior Manager for Biometrics Implementation for the Ministry of the Interior, Saudi Arabia

2006 - 2010
Computer Sciences Corporation, Arabia
  • Managed a 50-person team in developing, testing, training, and implementing a major biometrics program with local (KSA) and remote teams in Tokyo, India, and Canada. Reported to the Ministry of the Interior steering committee every month.
  • Managed and completed the receipt, logging, and shipping of over 10,000 items used to build 1,700 biometric workstations at over 500 locations in the Kingdom and connected them to the central data center in Riyadh.
  • Developed a custom application to track all shipments, including signatures of shipping and receipt, training of resources by facility, facility implementation status, and facility inventory.

Technical Services Director for Remote Oracle DBA Support and Consulting

2002 - 2006
DTC Global
  • Acted as the Oracle e-Business Suite DBA and director managing the data center in Plano, Texas, and multiple client accounts. Managed the support team to meet zero downtime for all clients over a two-year period.
  • Oversaw the Oracle DBA for a logistics implementation for a major shipping company in Copenhagen, Denmark.
  • Finished building out the data center used to support remote e-business suite customers.

Project Manager for IT and Strategy Consulting Engagements

2000 - 2002
Tactia Consulting
  • Served as managing director for Tacticas training division. Set up the company, leased the location, hired sales and marketing staff, managed a team to develop Java and C# boot camps. Completed the development and rollout of boot camps in six weeks.
  • Set up the Oracle practice for Tactica, installed the e-Business suite application, defined the team structure and initial project plans for customer engagement.
  • Oversaw as a project manager various client projects, including a major utility company, the world trade center, and others.

Project Manager for Pharmacy and Airline Engagements

1997 - 2000
Greenbrier and Russel
  • Managed, designed, and developed an OOO and Java MS SQL pricing application to support pharmacies nationwide. This reduced pharmacy time to develop drug price forecasts from months to days.
  • Developed and rolled out a full SDLC program for a major airline. This included training the department of several hundred programmers and managers.
  • Supported sales efforts for multiple initiatives, making presentations to the C-suite of potential clients.

Systems Analyst II for Airline Systems Development and Support

1996 - 1997
Southwest Airlines
  • Developed accounting systems in C++ and Sybase as a member of the PRISM team.
  • Managed a testing effort for the revenue accounting team.
  • Provided on-call support for the Sybase production systems, ensuring operational continuity on a 24/7 basis.

Advanced Systems Engineer for Manufacturing and Insurance Systems

1985 - 1996
Electronic Data Systems
  • Designed and coded an insurance claims workflow and routing system in C++ and Sybase. This workflow system reduced insurance claims processing overhead by at least 50%.
  • Supported an old voice-enabled support system for insurance claims using assembler. The system was unpredictable and down much of the time. With my lead, we stabilized it to run with no downtime until it was retired.
  • Coded programs in COBOL, Assembler, and JCL as a member of the mechanical insurance team to support policy management and claims.
  • Supported manufacturing floor systems at a facility in Detroit, Michigan, and Wilmington, Delaware.

Biometrics Identity Program for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Planned and managed the software development, hardware integration, testing, training, and deployment logistics for a multi-million dollar, 4-year program with a team of 50 professionals reporting to me,

Led the program, which included data center build-out, software development, workstation integration with biometrics hardware (iris cameras, photo cameras, and fingerprint capture devices), legacy COBOL systems, and existing national criminal databases (AFIS system).

The primary purpose of this program was to allow the Ministry of Interior to better manage and monitor illegal border crossings into the Kingdom. It was also expected that the program would help identify and apprehend persons on national and international travel ban lists.

The workstations were installed at selected prisons, all borders, passports, and civil offices in the country. This amounted to the receipt, build, ship, and install of 1,700 workstations (10,000 parts) to over 500 locations.

The program included building five mobile vans with satellite communications to enable biometrics enrollment in the country's remote areas. It included the development of hand-held devices where patrolmen could insert a citizen ID card, capture a live fingerprint of the person, and validate the person's identity against databases.

My program team consisted of 50 professionals and we completed the program within schedule and budget.

Customer Data Platform Implementation for Neiman Marcus

Managed the implementation of a SaaS CDP product and integrations to it for 20+ data streams (in-house and external) for a major retailer, delivering it ahead of the aggressive schedule and under budget.

As a member of the RFI/RFP process team who analyzed bid proposals, I reviewed demonstrations and selected the winning bidder for the project. I was also given the task to lead the initiative's implementation and support.

The purpose of this program was to allow the marketing team to develop, execute, and analyze marketing journeys in days rather than weeks.

I managed a 12-person cross-functional scrum team that consisted of developers, integration engineers, testers, product owners, and external vendors with integration points to the CDP, the primary customer (marketing and data analytics groups), and the third-party SaaS engineers.

The primary work that was completed included the implementation and configuration of the SaaS product, training the marketing and data analytics team on the use of the product, and multiple data integrations to the product from internal and external sources. This was primarily an integration effort, where most data sources were in AWS or the Neiman Marcus Data Warehouse (SnowFlake).

We were able to complete the initial implementation ahead of a very aggressive schedule requirement and under budget.

Pediatric Asthma Mobile Application for Parkland Hospital

Managed the development of a pediatric mobile app for phones and tablets with integrations to a predictive analytics engine used to track and provide direct communications between doctors and patients.

This program included the development of a mobile app, tablet app, web-based dashboard, reports, and a comprehensive content management system. It was also integrated with a predictive analytics engine that would provide the physicians an insight into the patient's condition and automatically send the appropriate communications accordingly.

This program's primary purpose was to provide more direct interaction between pediatric physicians and their patients, one that can monitor patients' asthma status and communicate accurately and effectively with the patient without needing a physician visit. This was targeted at at-risk populations, as they are less likely to schedule appointments with physicians.

In addition to managing the team, I wrote the requirements, user stories, and mock-ups and managed the mobile development activities by a local third party. This required in-depth work with several physicians to understand and get the business requirements and story documented correctly.

Azure (Cloud) Migration for Trammel Crow Holdings

Completed a migration of exchange and several legacy applications from a local data center to the Microsoft Azure cloud.

I managed a team of five professionals and worked closely with the client's team to complete and document the discovery of migration assets and plan for and complete the migration.

The primary purpose of this project was to consolidate operations into the cloud and close down the necessary elements of their data center.

There were about 500 users to be migrated, and application considerations included legacy and hosted applications and some Microsoft Access applications that were used to update legacy databases manually.

Biometrics Identity Program for the State of North Carolina

Managed a multi-million dollar program that introduced the latest in identity matching and verification, card security, and 3D photographs on the State driver's license.

This program utilized a dispersed team of about 20 engineers located in France, the Netherlands, Colombia, and multiple locations in the United States.

The program included software and hardware development and integration with legacy State COBOL applications.

Pharmaceutical Cost Evaluator

Reduced time that pharmacists took to build annual cost models from months to a few days.

Member pharmacies were taking months to build annual cost models for drug purchases in Excel. I designed and managed the development of a costing model that the client believed could not be done. Using OOO, Java, and Microsoft SQL Server, we coded and implemented this in about three months.
1983 - 1994

PhD in Computer Music Composition and Theory

University of North Texas - Denton, Texas, USA

1981 - 1983

Master's Degree in Computer Music Composition and Theory

New Mexico State University - Las Cruces, New Mexico, USA

1977 - 1981

Bachelor's Degree in Music Composition and Theory

University of North Texas - Denton, Texas, USA


SAFe 5.1 Scrum Master

Scaled Agile

MARCH 2023 - OCTOBER 2023

SAFe 6.0 Scrum Master

Scaled Agile


SAFe 4.6 Certified Scrum Master

Scaled Agile


Certified Scrum Master



Jira, Project Management & Work Tracking Tools, Office 365, Microsoft Project, SQL, Microsoft Visio, ETL, Atlassian Suite, LS Retail POS Systems, Confluence, Oracle E-Business Suite (EBS), Slack

Industry Expertise

Higher Education, Insurance, Digital Marketing, Event Ticketing, Software, Business Technology, Nonprofits, Fashion, Healthcare


Waterfall Delivery, Agile Project Management, Scrum, Agile Product Management, Requirements Analysis, Agile Delivery, Agile, Agile Leadership, Change Management, Database Design, Implementation Project Management, Kanban, Data Science, DevOps


Azure, Amazon Web Services (AWS)


Software Development Lifecycle (SDLC), Client Management, Microsoft 365, Project Management, Remote Team Leadership, Discovery Workshops, Waterfall Methodology, Agile Coaching, Project Planning, Timelines, Project Scoping, Estimation & Planning, Delivery, Certified ScrumMaster (CSM), People Management, Strategic Planning, Leadership, Project Timelines, Backlog Management, Project Reporting, Stakeholder Management, Project Delivery, IT Project Management, Project Management Office (PMO), PMO Development, Presentations, Risk Management, Project Scheduling, Team Leadership, Cross-functional Team Leadership, Planning, Reporting, Project Tracking, Distributed Team Management, Consulting, IT Projects, Project Management & Delivery, Digital Project Management, Project Coordination, Facilitation, Technical Consulting, Strategic Planning & Execution, Detail-oriented, Communication, Process Optimization, Mentorship, Progress Reporting, Agile Program Management, Governance, Team Management, Performance Management, Accountability, Data-driven Decision-making, Scrum Master, Data Analytics, Biometrics, eCommerce, Technical Project Management, System Integration, Product Owner, Client Delivery Management, Music Production, Project Discovery, System Requirements, Scrum Coaching, Customer Relationship Management (CRM), Software Development, Feature Roadmaps, PMO, C-suite, Marketing Automation, Program Management, Cross-functional Collaboration, Sprint Retrospectives, Sprint Ceremonies, Sprint Planning, Organizational Design, Feature Planning, Relational Databases, Feature Backlog Prioritization, Estimations, Staffing, Biotechnology, Work Breakdown Structure, Product Management, Analytics, Time Management, Account Management, Client Relations, Workflow, Coaching, Business Analysis, Training, Requirements & Specifications, Marketplaces, IT Program Management, Technical Program Management, Project Budget Management, Project Finance, User Stories, Process Mapping, Process Improvement Project Management, Exploratory Data Analysis, Process Management, Business Processes, Process Improvement, Stakeholder Engagement, Databases, Jira Administration, Business to Consumer (B2C), Business to Business (B2B), Enterprise, Web Project Management, Vendor Management, Best Practices, App Development, Development, GAP Analysis, Gantt Chart, Hybrid Project Management, Data, Discovery, Workshops, Microsoft Teams, Government Contracting, Executive Support, Workshop Facilitation, Enterprise Application Design, Java, Oracle DBA, Microsoft SQL Server, C++, Marketing, IT Services, IT Service Delivery, Mobile Apps, Mobile, Marketing Technology (MarTech), Business Intelligence (BI), SaaS, Product Roadmaps, Jira Administrator, Medical Software, Certifications, Startups, Early-stage Startups, Web, Roadmaps, Cloud Architecture, Web Applications, Web App Development, Websites, Two-sided Marketplaces, IT Operations Management (ITOM), Data Management Platforms, Freelancing, Cloud, Product Strategy, Minimum Viable Product (MVP), Interactive UI, Cloud Infrastructure, Azure Cloud Services, Data Migration, Manufacturing, Product Development, Web Development, Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe), PI Planning, Applications, Project Rescue, Online Payments, Digital Transformation Program Management, Healthcare IT

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