- Member of the Senior Company Management Team
- Technical and Project Management
- System Design and Specification
- Requirements Generation and Management
- Line Management, Recruitment and Team Organisation
- Customer Liaison and Work Package Definition
- Management of Hardware, Software, Mechanical and Optical Developments
October 2012 to September 2016: Head of Engineering
My introduction as the Head of Engineering for Fotech Solutions was the first time that all the engineering teams had been drawn together under one manager. I reported directly to the CEO as part of the five-strong senior management team.
The Engineering Group supported all product development for all aspects of the business. At the time, these were Oil and Gas, Rail and Pipeline, and Security.
The Engineering Group was 20 people split across 4 primary teams with the 4 Team Leaders, and had a dedicated engineering project manager reporting to me. The majority of the SW Team was based in Calgary for historical reasons.
In a small company like Fotech, my role was necessarily extremely broad and involved everything from day-to-day project priority calls, technical reviews, line management, and recruitment, to customer support, sales support, and quite a bit of administration.
I was also undertaking almost all of the project management for the many engineering programs. From an administrative perspective, I was responsible for the entire engineering budget consisting of salaries, capital equipment, day-to-day expenses, and tracking of direct project costs.
I introduced a set of light Project Lifecycle processes and procedures based on the V-Model and review-driven gates. A key element of this is the requirements management process for which we created a simple bespoke requirements “tracker” system based on Redmine.
October 2016 to February 2017: Chief Systems Architect
The company recognised that the Head of Engineering role had become too diverse for a single person to address. A consequence of this was that insufficient time was being spent looking ahead at the next generation systems.
Therefore, I moved to become Chief Systems Architect under the CEO and the Engineering Project manager was promoted to Engineering Manager, looking after all Software and Hardware development whilst continuing to work for me.
In this new role I still had oversight on all the engineering developments and for the overall engineering team. My primary responsibility was for all the top-level systems engineering, research and requirements generation to meet new internal and external requirements.
Alongside this, I provided the technical sales support, involving a great deal of direct customer contact both for straight sales and collaborative developments.
If customers were seeking to fund a bespoke development, I worked closely with them to jointly create the Work Package Descriptions, which are a critical part of the engagement. These define the top-level requirements, system-level approach, project plan, key milestones, costs, payment schedules, and the acceptance criteria.