Smita Das, Project Manager in London, United Kingdom
Smita Das

Project Manager in London, United Kingdom

Member since December 26, 2018
A highly experienced project manager, product manager, and scrum master based in London, Smita helps businesses define, plan, and deliver their projects and products using agile, user-centered, and lean practices. With 15+ years of experience, she is a safe pair of hands who can bring complex products to life while creating an enjoyable and supportive environment for the team.
Smita is now available for hire

Project Highlights

  • Led a large program of work to design and build a cutting edge, interactive museum in New York. Launched in January 2019.
  • I was brought in to inject focus and enable delivery across the product and development teams for this fintech startup.
  • Led the customer experience team for Fidelity Investments as part of a major digital transformation program.

Education

Select Certifications

Employment

  • Project/Product manager

    2020 - 2020
    Instrumental (www.weareinstrumental.com)
    • Brought in to bring structure and focus to the development and product function of this successful start-up in London.
    • Successfully implemented an agile delivery framework ensuring the team worked with clarity around priorities.
    • Led the formation and definition of a product roadmap for the year based high-level business objectives and goals. This roadmap was elicited via several rounds of meetings and workshops with the company's C-level executives and team leads.
    • Recommended and subsequently managed the transition of support tasks to an off-shore team to enable the core engineering team to focus on building the roadmap items/.
    • Kicked off a major project to migrate back-end systems to be managed and hosted by an off-shore partner.
    • Mentored and trained an internal staff member to take over as product owner.
  • Project Manager

    2019 - 2020
    FreeRoots
    • Created product backlog of user stories for this greenfield start-up in the online advocacy space.
    • Collaborated with lead designer to enable customer focussed approach to the design phase, including prototyping and usability testing.
    • Set up and ran an agile delivery framework with one week sprints and a weekly reviews with the sponsors.
    • Managed project through full project lifecycle from inception to delivery and was re-engaged post launch for further advisory and hands on tasks on the use of analytics.
    • Overall the team and I designed, built and delivered a digital advocacy platform in 3 months, fulfilling the clients' brief and enabling a successful launch.
  • Senior Project Manager

    2018 - 2019
    Banked
    • Worked closely with the CEO and product analysts to elicit requirements and define MVP.
    • Set up the scrum framework and facilitated all ceremonies.
    • Created and managed the overall schedule of wider dependencies and milestones.
    • Drove a user-centered design approach, making use of surveys and interviews to understand user needs.
    • Acted as a proxy for the CEO/product owner during sprint reviews.
  • Senior Project Manager

    2016 - 2018
    SPYSCAPE
    • Managed the overall program of work which involved multiple concurrent streams of activity with many dependencies.
    • Reported on progress and blockers to board every week.
    • Managed a large cross-functional team of designers and developers to deliver six interactive games for the museum. The full experience was delivered in 16 months from concept to launch.
    • Ensured teams worked on the right priorities by managing game backlogs and sprint planning.
    • Drove the use of early prototyping and usability testing to de-risk the possibility of expensive changes further down the track.
  • Project/Product manager

    2016 - 2016
    BAFTA (British Academy of Film and Television Arts)
    • Managed the delivery of a greenfield technology project for this prestigious British institution.
    • Defined the product with the business manager by conducting interviews with potential users and creating a backlog of user stories.
    • Created the functional wireframes to enable the visual designer to quickly craft polished designs.
    • Prepared and presented our reports.
  • Project Manager

    2015 - 2015
    Elsewhen
    • Managed a team of developers and designers in the delivery of a product for Google.
    • Worked with a very large data set, creating an easy to use tool that enables strategists and marketers to extract useful insights easily from large and complex data sets.
    • Supported a user-centric and lean approach to product development.
    • Worked directly with Google customer to agree contract, schedule, and scope.
  • Project Manager

    2014 - 2015
    Picsolve
    • Introduced scrum and coached team members into adopting new practices with ease and enjoyment.
    • Managed all ceremonies and ensuring backlog reflected priorities of the business.
    • Enabled delivery of two crucial strategic projects to introduce multi lingual capability and achieve feature parity across iOS and Android platforms.
    • Reported directly to the board on team progress and morale.
  • Senior Project Manager

    2014 - 2014
    Fidelity Investments
    • Led the customer experience work-stream to rethink Fidelity's portfolio of digital experiences.
    • Utilized user-centered design practices to develop prototypes to road-test new features.
    • Involved many stakeholders and managed the efforts of three business analysts to break down and rework complex financial products and existing workflows into improved user experiences.
    • Worked alongside several other PMs to ensure the complex program of work ran smoothly.

Project History

  • Senior Project Manager
    Led a large program of work to design and build a cutting edge, interactive museum in New York. Launched in January 2019.

    A highly creative and unique vision was realized with the launch of SPYSCAPE, an interactive spy museum experience. Prototyping and user testing were central to our success as well as the tight management of scope in order to achieve our time frames. I was responsible for leading the design, development, and fabrication of the six interactive games which form the backbone of the museum experience.

  • Program Manager
    I was brought in to inject focus and enable delivery across the product and development teams for this fintech startup.

    This well funded open banking start-up needed to produce valuable, working software efficiently and quickly. I was an early hire and collaborated with the CEO and product analysts to produce a well-defined backlog which I then managed the delivery of via scrum, running all ceremonies and managing the backlog via JIRA.

  • Senior Project Manager
    Led the customer experience team for Fidelity Investments as part of a major digital transformation program.

    A complex program of work to review and improve key digital user journeys across a number of retail products. I was responsible for managing a large team of UX designers, business analysts, and front-end developers in delivering and testing prototypes for usability testing.

  • Project Manager
    Led a team of developers, designs, and test engineers in the design, build and launch of an online advocacy tool.

    The client's budget and launch strategy meant the project had to be launched in three months from kick-off. Through effective and transparent planning around estimates and priorities, we were able to ensure a robust MVP was launched on time and on budget.

    We adopted a user-led approach to design, we created a prototype and user-tested with 5+ testers before investing in front end development.

  • Program Manager
    Set up the engineering and product teams with a framework and tools to enable sustainable and impactful delivery.

    I was brought in to help the business and engineering teams align and successfully deliver value add projects. My focus was creating a roadmap that could be easily shared and managed as well as instilling healthy working practices by way of an agile delivery framework that ensured the developers could focus and deliver on the highest priority projects. Over four months there was a genuine transformation in how the company working and delivering against its business goals. I also mentored and trained an internal member of staff to take over as product owner.

Education

  • Master's degree in Law and Economics
    1995 - 1998
    University of Manchester - UK

Certifications

  • Certified Scrum Master
    SEPTEMBER 2007 - PRESENT
    Scrum Alliance
  • Prince 2
    JULY 2006 - PRESENT
    QA
  • Diploma in Project Management
    JULY 2005 - PRESENT
    Open University

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