Greg Avatar Gregory J. Annen  

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Automation Center of Excellence

I organized and directed a Center of Excellence for test automation, which provided governance, services and support for functional test automation projects across all US development centers. I managed a core team of experts who developed and deployed effective test automation solutions.

Test Automation Frameworks

As a 'hands-on' technical manager, I designed, developed and maintained keyword, data-driven, and hybrid automation frameworks, some for use with HP (Mercury) testing tools: WinRunner, QuickTest Pro / UFT (including BPT), and Quality Center.

Standards and Best Practices

I established, documented and enforced standards for test automation. Initially, I evaluated existing assets, resources, and practices, and then I applied an industry standard methodology to determine the effectiveness of an organization's automation effort. Finally, I managed the efforts of the automation solution development team to ensure that they remained effective within the prescribed guidelines.

Cross-Team Collaboration

I utilized all available channels of communication to share testing assets, knowledge, and solutions across multiple projects and locations. For example, I created a corporate SharePoint site as a common information portal for manual testers and automation scripters. I also organized interactive demos of automation solutions.

Staffing and Training

In addition to hiring expert resources for my own teams, I have provided input to the hiring managers of other teams and at other locations, for full-time, contract, and offshore employees. I assume the role of mentor for new hires.

First Midwest Bank       Chicago and Joliet, IL
QA Manager / Analyst III      May 2020 to Present
As the manager of the QA team, I am responsible for engaging with project teams in all lines of business, introducing quality processes into their software development and integration workflows, and assigning QA resources to projects as needed. As a hands-on manager, I continue to create test cases and write automation scripts.
QsrSoft       Oak Brook, IL
QA Manager      November 2015 to May 2020
In this role, I was responsible for introducing all quality processes, procedures, and solutions to QsrSoft's Cash and Inventory software product development efforts. Technology was Javascript with AWS cloud APIs. As a hands-on manager, I created test cases and wrote automation scripts.
SQS-USA (formerly Galmont Consulting, LLC)      Chicago, IL
QA Practice Director, Testing and Automation       Feb 2015 to November 2015
This was a senior technology leadership role as a client facing manager working on projects for implementing QA testing best practices in several verticals. Tools: HP UFT/QTP, ALM/Quality Center, Perfecto Mobile, Appcelerator, and Selenium WebDriver.
Key engagements included:
Epsilon (formerly Conversant Media)      Chicago, IL
Team Lead, Ad Server Enterprise QA & Test Automation      April 2014 to Feb 2015
I managed a team of seven test engineers who created and maintained regression suites built using two customized frameworks: one Java, and one Ruby (with Lucid). Key learnings included:
HCSC Blue Cross Blue Shield IL       Chicago, IL
Supervisor, Enterprise Testing & BA Services       September 2010 to April 2014
I supervised a team of 20 local and remote QA resources located in Chicago/Naperville, IL, and Richardson, TX. This included both full-time and contract staff. This began as a contract role through TEKSystems, and my technical success led to an offer of full-time employment by BCBS.
My accomplishments included:
TriZetto Healthcare Management       Naperville, IL
Manager, QA Automation COE      April 2008 to June 2009
I organized an Automation Center of Excellence for functional testing which set standards and determined best practices for 5 geographically separate development centers.
Leadership experience included: Technical experience included:

JPMorgan Chase & Co.       Chicago, IL
Senior QA Automation Analyst       August 2009 to September 2010
I was responsible for all functional test automation initiatives in a major commercial credit card processing application release.
I managed onshore and offshore teams who built Business Process Tests (BPT) using HP QTP and Quality Center. I also served as a QA Test Lead.

SunGard Financial Data       Lombard, IL
QA Test Automation Product Manager       April 2006 to April 2008
I enhanced and maintained a keyword-driven framework using HP QuickTest Pro and TestDirector/Quality Center which simplified test case input using Excel spreadsheets.
This single solution had multiple uses for mainframe, java, and web-based test execution, maintained by distributed teams.

ShopLocal, LLC       Chicago, IL
Senior SQA Test Automation Team Leader       January 2006 to April 2006
I was responsible for test framework design, implementation and training using QuickTest Pro and Quality Center. I developed an SQL automation solution for automated query-based tests. Some C#.

Utopia Solutions, Inc.       Naperville, IL
Practice Lead for Functional Test Automation       April 2004 to January 2006
As a consultant for several major clients (e.g., Kraft Foods, CDW, AllScripts), I built and deployed test automation frameworks, trained staff, and documented solutions for hand-off to internal QA teams.
I implemented test lab virtualization using VMWare products.

CNA Insurance       Chicago, IL
IT Quality Assurance Senior Specialist       April 2003 to April 2004
I created WinRunner scripts in TSL, provided LoadRunner test planning and execution, and evaluated a QuickTest Pro upgrade for various web-based application test scenarios.
I revised the test script automation architecture to improve maintainability and increase test coverage.

IBM Global Services       Chicago, IL
IT Specialist/Architect; Technical Team Lead       April 1998 to April 2003
I performed system test and support of Lucent's Oracle-based Global Product Database and legacy interfaces. I introduced automated testing techniques to the Lucent QA team, developing a keyword-driven framework for Mercury WinRunner.
This type of framework became an industry standard.

TEKsystems (Maxim Group) Consulting       Chicago, IL
Team Lead for System Test and Support       November 1996 to April 1998
This was a contract-to-hire position for IBM at Lucent, with responsibilities described above. My exceptional performance in this role led to my full-time employment by IBM.

The Walgreen Company (Data Center)       Mt Prospect, IL
Store Support / Coverage Analyst       October 1995 to November 1996
I performed system evaluation and support for transition of 2,000+ retail stores to the Intercom Plus satellite network, an n-tier client-server solution. Unix, Novell, Oracle. Satellite networks.

Loyola University, Chicago, IL
Degree: B.A.
Majors: English Literature, Philosophy


HP Certificates:

IEEE Affiliate Member, R4-Central USA Region

My Employers


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