High impact, low drama: Behind the scenes with a Trineo senior agile business analyst

by April Bohnert
June 14, 2019
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Photo via Trineo. Cindy Sady featured right, with her team.

Trineo may not hire “ninjas,” “gurus” or “rockstars,” but that’s not to say their talent doesn’t run deep.

Just take Senior Agile Business Analyst Cindy Sady for example. With a background in technical programming and business analysis as well as a Scrum Master certification, Sady masterfully navigates both the technical and non-technical sides of the business, working alongside developers, UX designers, product managers and client teams to communicate goals, set expectations and keep projects on track.

Alongside her is a team of smart, passionate technologists — spread across offices in Boulder and Christchurch, New Zealand — with collective expertise in agile software development, Heroku and Salesforce. Leveraging their vast technical knowledge and a “high impact, low drama” approach, the Trineo team works side by side with businesses to help them realize powerful digital transformations.

We recently spoke with Sady to learn more about the exciting work her team is doing, and how she collaborates across departments, businesses — and continents — to develop game-changing technology platforms.

 

Tell us briefly how you collaborate with various stakeholders. Is there anything unique or special about the way you work with these teams?

Communication and collaboration on any team are always important, but when working with a geographically dispersed team like ours, it’s exceptionally important. The time change is a significant factor, but we make it work by scheduling our team meetings late in our afternoons here and always via video conference. We also use Slack regularly as a collaboration tool. We all communicate so frequently that I sometimes forget that I have not yet met everyone on the team in person!  

 

Tell us about a project you worked on recently that you’re really proud of.

The client asked our team to ensure that added load on the system would not cause any glitches that would negatively impact sales in anticipation of exceptionally heavy sales volume on a particular date. The team worked diligently to review all potential performance issues and determine which improvements would result in the most bang for the buck. Changes were made and extensive load testing was performed. The end result was a record-breaking sales day for the client without a single hitch! This is where the Trineo team excels; when we make a promise to the client to deliver an excellent quality solution, we just do it!

 

Life is too short to over-complicate and create unnecessary drama. We just get the job done in the best way possible.” 

How would you describe the company culture at Trineo? How is it different from other places you’ve worked?

We do what works here at Trineo. We don’t waste any time and get caught up in a frenzy of wasteful meetings. This aligns with our value of “high impact, low drama.” I have worked for many large corporations before coming to Trineo and truly appreciate that we spend all of our time valuably. Life is too short to over-complicate and create unnecessary drama. We just get the job done in the best way possible. And it helps that we have an amazingly talented group of developers and UX designers here at Trineo!    

 

What aspects of your job do you enjoy most?

I love helping the client solve problems. It sounds so simple, yet there is so much involved. I enjoy listening intently to the issues the client is experiencing, getting to the root of the problem to be solved and breaking the problem down into manageable pieces for the team to work on. I also truly enjoy helping the development team be successful, and do what I can to make sure they are proud of what they are accomplishing on the team. I learn daily from the technical team, and that’s just another aspect that makes this job so interesting and rewarding.  

 

You played a big role in building out a new process for working through development. Tell us a bit about this new process and the impact it's had on the team.

I stepped into a well-established team that had a particular process in place to create a big upfront design for large features. Based on my past experience and in talking with the team, this was not ideal for anyone, as the upfront design was out of date the minute coding commenced. Since I have been working in this career long enough to know that change is inevitable, that things will be missed upfront and that all things cannot be thought of way ahead of time, I suggested an experiment for change.  

We replaced this process with a half-hour feature kick-off meeting, where the product manager gives an overview of the high-level business requirements for the feature, and the team has a technical discussion to determine if any big architecture decisions are needed. If these big decisions are needed, we set aside time for the team to figure these out. This was a rather small change, but it resulted in a much happier team, where everyone was participating in decisions, time was not wasted on rework and the right solutions were being implemented.  

 

When it comes to hiring, what qualities do you look for in a new addition to your team?

Once we know someone has a base-level of technical skills, we look for excellent listening skills and solid examples that demonstrate empathy and teamwork. Out of all the places I have worked, this is the first place I have seen that puts such a big emphasis on the soft skills and cultural fit.

 

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