Ray Cooke

Principal Consultant
Wellington

+64 4 499 9450

Ray is a Principal Consultant with specialist experience in software delivery management and Agile, Lean and DevOps approaches to work. He makes a substantial contribution to our clients by helping them to work in smarter ways suitable to today's rapidly changing and complex environments. Unlike many 'agile coaches' who have often read a few books, Ray brings a serious depth of experience with more than 18 years in IT and over 10 years working in software delivery management and application management roles.

He has specialist skills in:

  • Software delivery management and application management
  • Software development practices, approaches and tools
  • Agile, Lean and DevOps advice, implementation and coaching
  • Continuous deployment and continuous integration
  • Scrum, Kanban and Scrumban methods
  • Team management and leadership
  • Estimation
  • Release management.

"Organisations today need to work differently to deliver better, faster and cheaper. Achieving this outcome however is more complex than many think. It requires individuals, teams and organisations to behave differently. It requires new mind-sets, the removal of silos and greater collaboration across the organisation. It requires different leadership and management approaches, new skills, and fresh practices. It requires cultural change and active change management to succeed. My role is to help clients to work in these new ways to enable greater success."

Ray has worked in many industries including central and local government, financial markets and banking, education, health, research, and technology.

He is also an Equinox IT certified instructor, delivering training courses on Agile, Scrum, and Kanban.

Ray has a Bachelor of Science with 2nd Class Honours in Computer Science with Distributed Systems and Networks from the University of Southampton in the United Kingdom. He also holds a NEBS Management certificate from the Yinl Scheme, Pershore College, United Kingdom. He is a Certified ScrumMaster.

When not at work Ray enjoys indoor rock climbing, skiing and snorkelling (though he has yet to work out how to do them all at the same time – maybe really weighted down with scuba gear on underwater mountains?).

 


 

Examples of Ray's work

Project management, programme management, and project quality assurance
  • Cost modelling for a central government agency

    What we did: Equinox IT created a cost model for a central government agency to agree upon funding and a delivery plan for a digital programme of work. Activities included determining the scope of the work; researching relevant statistical cost modelling options; building, calibrating and presenting a Monte Carlo simulation demonstrating the expected total delivery cost of the programme.

    Deliverables: Excel-based Monte Carlo simulation with built in variables, probability distributions, market statistics and documentation.

Architecture and technical quality assurance
  • IaaS Review for central government agency

    What we did: Equinox IT provided a technical quality assurance review of a vendor's governance, ITIL service management approaches and supply chain management approaches for a cloud IaaS service offering. Activities included interviewing key people involved, reviewing procedures and approaches, and making recommendations.

    Deliverables: IaaS solution review report.

Process improvement and Agile and DevOps adoption
  • Agile adoption assessment for a central government agency

    What we did: Equinox IT assessed the current state of Agile adoption for a central government agency and provided the CIO and management team with the most valuable next steps for ongoing adoption. Activities included interviewing senior managers, delivery team members and business units to assess current state; assessing people and processes; identifying impediments and barriers to meeting the goals of the Agile adoption.

    Deliverables: Problem affinity diagram, next steps impact map, Agile process adoption presentation with recommendations and next steps.

  • Agile coaching for a central government agency

    What we did: Equinox IT helped a central government agency to grow the capability of their support and development teams to take on larger projects. Activities included introducing Kanban as a continuous improvement mechanism; coaching team members on development practices, continuous integration and automated testing; updating processes to enable frequent Agile delivery of software releases; coaching business representatives on how to engage with an Agile delivery function.

    Deliverables: Improved team capability.

  • Delivery process improvement for central government agency

    What we did: Equinox IT helped a central government agency to introduce delivery processes improvements for a major programme of work with the purpose of reducing risk and increasing likelihood of success. The scope included software delivery teams, data warehousing and business intelligence.

    Deliverables: Delivery process improvements.

  • Development process improvement for central government agency

    What we did: Equinox IT assessed the current state of a central government agency's development team and provided recommendations for process improvement. Activities included interviewing team members, reviewing current management and development principles, and making recommendations to help achieve the stated objectives.

    Deliverables: Development process assessment report and presentation.

  • DevOps coaching for a local government organisation

    What we did: Equinox IT provided coaching and mentoring services to help a local government organisation's applications group and digital team adopt and apply DevOps practices.

    Deliverables: Improved team capability.

  • DevOps review for central government agency

    What we did: Equinox IT assessed the capability of the in-house DevOps function for a central government agency ahead of a significant upcoming programme of work. The activities included interviewing people across IT and the wider organisation to understand the current state, identifying constraints to the programme delivery using the existing DevOps function, and making recommendations for improvements and next steps.

    Deliverables: DevOps assurance report including organisational context, value stream map and a problem map.

  • Improve an internet service provider's use of DevOps and Agile

    What we did: Equinox IT worked with an internet service provider, providing assessment, coaching and training services to improve the IT team's use of Agile, DevOps and management practices and to engage better with the rest of the organisation.

    Deliverables: Improved team capability.

  • Improving internet company's Agile and DevOps practices

    What we did: Equinox IT worked with an internet product company, providing assessment, coaching and training services to improve the infrastructure team's use of Agile, DevOps and management practices.

    Deliverables: Improved team capability.

Software, application, web and mobile development
  • Coach for software development project team

    What we did: Providing software development coaching for an Equinox IT delivery team undertaking a central government agency business system development project. Activities included facilitating retrospectives, generating and analysing metrics for management reporting and continuous improvement, and implementing crisis response process changes.

    Deliverables: Successful project releases.

Visual Studio implementation and configuration
  • DevOps pipeline development for a central government agency

    What we did: Equinox IT created a re-usable deployment and accreditation pipeline in Microsoft Visual Studio Team Services (VSTS) and Azure for a central government agency to use internally, with vendors and with the sector. The pipeline improves speed and quality and provides assurance that products can be supported and maintained post-delivery.

    Deliverables: An accrediting deployment pipeline in VSTS and Azure, a presentation and demonstration of pipeline capability, next steps for DevOps adoption and use.

Ray's blog posts:

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