When all of the best and brightest thinkers in the agile arena get together in one place, there’s no doubt you are going to learn a lot from one another and have fun. This year’s Agile2017 conference in Orlando was no exception. Great breadth of topics that loaded me up with ideas to bring back to our Dominion clients and our company itself. I want to share a few of the areas that top my list.
Making Time for Innovation is Good for Everyone
The innovation theme was prevalent in many conversations and areas, and there is a good reason – because it is important. Innovation is how people, products, industries, etc. get better. Allowing our developers, engineers and leaders the space to innovate will build higher performing teams and organizations. I spent Open Spaces time with some great agilists hearing about the innovative ideas they have implemented at their respective companies. This has fueled my fire to get this going even more at home.
Here at Dominion, we are currently building an internal application that will allow us to better track new business opportunities. Simultaneously, we are exposing more of our staff to agile and continuous integration/continuous deployment (CI/CD) principles. Among the many concepts we are trying to inculcate in our team is the “layer cake” user story.
The layer cake idea has been around for over a decade. However, I’ve found on nearly all agile engagements that I’ve been on, teams either discard this idea early in the project or completely ignore it from the outset. It is up to the triumvirate of the Product Owner, Scrum Master, and Business Analyst to ensure that the scrum team writes user stories in such a manner that the outcome of each story is working software that delivers tangible value to the end user. (more…)
Dominion Consulting stays in the forefront of Federal IT modernization efforts by encouraging our employees to hone skills and stay current on issues and initiatives impacting government agencies. We are active in several organizations that promote fiscal accountability and technology through government and industry collaboration. One of these organizations is the Association of Government Accountants (AGA). Dominion is very active in the AGA, attending conferences, training events, and providing expert advice on advisory committees.
In July, the 2017 AGA Professional Development Training (PDT) conference brought over 1900 participants, 50 exhibitors, and almost 200 speakers from both industry and government to Boston to discuss emerging issues, initiatives, and technology solutions. Conferences such as this serve as an excellent training platform and allows Dominion to showcase its broad range of services and capabilities. We are able network with former colleagues, clients, and prospective clients, catching up on the latest developments. Representing us at the AGA PDT conference were Todd Barber, Jim Levitan, Howard Campbell, Matt Duffy, Ted Kozlow, and Megan Powers.
The lineup of speakers at the conference is always impressive. This year, they included Massachusetts governor Charlie Baker, Comptroller General of the United States Gene Dodaro, and Deputy Controller at OMB Mark Reger. Topics included finance, accounting, and technology initiatives.
Alzheimer’s Disease is a global problem. In the United States, someone develops Alzheimer’s every 66 seconds and is the sixth-leading cause of death in our country. This is reality. It does not have to be the future.
This year, Dominion Consulting is participating in the Alzheimer’s Association 2017 Walk to End Alzheimer’s. This September 24th, we are taking to the streets of Reston to help in the fight against Alzheimer’s. Dominion is committed to raising awareness and funds for Alzheimer’s care, support, and research. We are hoping you will join us in helping fight this disease.
You’re an experienced Scrum Master beginning a new project. You meet with your Product Owner (PO) for the first time and hear him or her say any or all of the following:
- “I’ve never worked in this role before.”
- “I’ll do my best to be on-site as much as possible.”
- “I’ve completed Certified Scrum Master training, but I’ve never applied it in practice.”
- “I’m the Product Owner for your team, and nine others.”
Your spidey sense is now tingling. You are going to be working with an inexperienced and/or overextended PO. Fear not, however. Here are some methods and remedies you can apply to get your PO up to speed.
Dominion Consulting is thrilled to announce that for the second time, we made the list of The Washington Post’s 2017 Top Workplaces ranking an impressive 21st out 65 similarly sized companies. The Top Workplace award signifies the best places to work in the Washington D.C. metro area. This award is especially important to us because the winners are selected based off the most important criteria – the employee feedback!
The Washington Post partnered with Workplace Dynamics to provide an independent evaluator of the anonymous employee surveys. The winners were selected based on the highest overall scores from a variety of topics: quality of leadership, direction of the company, pay and benefits, and work-life balance.
On June 8th, Dominion Consulting employees cooked dinner for the families that are currently living at The Children’s Inn at National Institutes of Health (NIH). For those of you that don’t know, The Children’s Inn is a non-profit dedicated to providing “a place like home” for children and their families participating in clinical research at NIH. Coming to NIH is a last, best hope for treatment or a cure for many of them. (more…)
This week I attended the 2017 Alfresco Government Summit here in DC. It is part of Alfresco’s rotating 1-day summits that they hold around the world during the year. Alfresco held this year’s DC event at Nats Park, a great location for the great weather. When attendance is good, it is a solid event full of productive discussions about information governance.
This year was a good year.
As a former Alfresco employee, it was enjoyable to chat with old friends to learn what has changed, and not changed, since my departure. More importantly for Dominion Consulting, it was great to hear directly from Alfresco executives what their priorities are and their vision for tackling them. Enterprise content management (ECM) is constantly evolving so as a leading vendor in the space, their opinion matters.
Based upon what I saw at the event, Alfresco’s priority is enabling digital transformation for organizations.
On May 21, Dominion Consulting employees, families, and friends participated in the 8th Annual Mattie Miracle Walk & Family Festival. It was a great day of fun at St. Stephen’s and St. Agnes’ School that served to raise money for the Mattie Miracle Cancer Foundation. Activities included an inflatable obstacle course, giant lawn games like Connect Four and Jenga, and so much more.
This was Dominion’s sixth time participating in the walk and once again it was a rewarding experience. The Mattie Miracle Cancer Foundation is a great cause and it brings out the best in people.
IT departments are continually being asked to do more with less. They’re also working to meet the increasing demands of their customers. Clients who are accustomed to Amazon-like IT interactions outside of the workplace.
The IT Service Management arena is no exception. In an effort to continue to improve our ability to meet the needs of our clients, Dominion Consulting is now a ServiceNow partner. Our partnership with ServiceNow strengthens our ability to bring best-in-class solutions to our clients looking to overcome these challenges.
To further our partnership, last week I attended Knowledge17, ServiceNow’s annual conference in Orlando, FL. Over 15,000 ServiceNow customers, partners, and associates gathered together to exchange ideas, experiences, and advice. The mixture of keynotes, labs, customer success stories, and demos ensured a little something for everyone.
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- Working to Innovate at the Agile 2017 Conference
- Delivering Value Using Layer Cake User Stories
- Dominion Leaves its Mark at AGA’s 2017 Professional Development Training Conference
- 2017 Walk to End Alzheimer’s
- Working With An Inexperienced Product Owner
- And, the Top Workplace Award Goes to…
- A Hand’s On Approach to Giving Back: Our Night at The Children’s Inn
- Alfresco Pushes Content Services for Digital Transformation