Jacob J. Walker, M.S.

Business Analyst

While my career has spanned several organizations in multiple industries with many job titles, one constant through each of these has been my involvement in the role of a business analyst.  From the time I helped start the first Internet provider in Placer County, to the time I was placed in charge of changing the complete business model of an adult school, to being the co-founder of an adult charter school, my work has involved determining the business requirements of my organizational unit, including business process analysis, and then through working with the stakeholders (management, employees, customers, etc.) and understanding each of their needs, to improve the business processes, and to then write documentation and provide training to ensure the new processes could be successfully adopted.

This journey started with my introduction to "The Goal" as a young entrepreneur, (which is still one of the best business process books) and then continuing my professional development in this area through reading many other books, academic papers, appropriate web resources, etc., including reading "Good to Great", and more recently "The Phoenix Project".  I have continued my development in other ways, such as attending the TOGAF® User Group meeting last year, and diving deeper into Enterprise Architecture.

Through my various roles, I have grown in the complexity and scale of business units that I have analyzed and improved (or more recently developed from scratch).  With Psyberware, I was only involved with improving the customer service process; while as the co-founder of Highlands Community Charter School, I designed the majority of the policies, procedures, and processes for the school as a whole, and became very adept at conducing legal research so that I could ensure that the school both was able to comply with regulation, and also to find all legal flexibility available to ensure the regulations did not hinder the organization from accomplishing its mission.

Skills
Detail Oriented
Compliance often hinges on a single detail; as someone who regularly conducts legal research and drafts policies and procedures, I have become extremely proficient in sifting through the regulations to determine the sections that are most important and ensuring the details are right.
Time Management and Multi-Tasking
The most productive multi-tasking occurs from optimizing uninterrupted blocks of time while still communicating in a timely manner. Through my study of cognitive science and process analysis, I am adept at doing this, and reducing unproductive distractions.
Microsoft Office
I am a certified expert in Microsoft Excel and Microsoft Word: I scored perfectly on my Microsoft Excel exam, and scored 973 out of 1000 on my Microsoft Word Expert Exam. I also have expertise in the other components of Microsoft Office, and am proficient in other office suites (Google Apps, OpenOffice, etc.)
Interpersonal Skills
Through my ethical and knowledgeable inteaction with people, where I consider their needs and perspectives, I have developed strong interpersonal skills both verbally and in my writing, and have used these skills working with all levels of leadership within organizations and across multiple organizations and disciplines.
Analysis
Using multiple tools from Excel, to flow charts, to programming simulations, I am adept at analyzing data and the processes that the data are part of. I have continued to improve my skills over time, and am now half way through the Microsoft Professional Program in Data Science.
Programming
Experience in a variety of languages: R, Python, PHP, JavaScript, Java, SQL, VBA, & C
Experience
Data Actionism / Effective Education Solutions
July 1, 2017 - Present
Owner / Principal Consultant

As a consultant I have used my experience in business and education to help various organizations to improve and grow:

  • Help businesses and other organizations transform data into action
  • Perform various forms of business process analysis
  • Conduct compliance and regulatory research
  • Recommend and develop technological solutions for clients
  • My projects can be seen in the Data Actionism Portfolio
Highlands Community Charter and Technical Schools
April 5, 2014 - June 30, 2017
Co-founder / Coordinator
  • Designed most of the school's policies, procedures, and processes
  • Conducted legal research
  • Led the IT department
  • Acted as primary data analyst and data developer
Heald College Online
January 13, 2014 - April 18, 2014
Full-Time Faculty of Information Technology
  • As a Professor, taught three sections of Spreadsheet Essentials (COMPAPP123)
  • Was a member of the Quality Student Feedback team, developing guidelines for faculty about providing feedback to students.
  • Participated in Full-Time Faculty Meetings and was part of several key policy recommendations.
  • Performed institutional research to understand online retention rates
  • Automated several processes through the use of advanced spreadsheets (including VBA programming)
Grant Adult Education / Twin Rivers Adult School
August 18, 2001 - June 30, 2013
Teacher on Special Assignment / Database Administrator / Business Instructor
  • Led the transformation of the organization of having a business model of relying on state funding, to one that utilized federal funding of students with Federal Student Aid, via Pell Grants
  • Developed most financial aid policies, procedures, and systems for the school.
  • Federally designated Chief Financial Aid Director
  • Conducted institutional research, and produced reports
  • Taught business skills, including Microsoft Office
Psyberware Communications
July 1, 1995 -July 30, 2001
Lead Technician
  • Founding employee during the start-up stage of the company as a home-based business; continued through to the maturation of a medium-sized company.
  • Primarily supported users with Internet questions and problems via the telephone.
  • Influenced by the philosophies of Tom Peters, I worked to provide excellent customer support, often "going above and beyond the call of duty."
  • Being part of a start-up company, I had the opportunity to be involved in many areas including management, marketing, training, technical writing, and in-person support.
Education
Nova Southeastern University
January 8, 2009 - June 30, 2010
Master of Science, Brain-Based Teaching
  • Studied various neurosciences and how knowledge from these disciplines can help improve teaching and learning.
  • Masters project and research investigated the use of Minesweeper to help gamify the learning of logic and hypothetical thinking.
  • Placed in the 99th Percentile on the Watson-Glaser Critical Thinking Appraisal
Charter Oak State College
November 1, 2007 - November 30, 2008
Bachelors of Science, Technology / Systems / Education
  • Graduated with honors
Sierra College
August 23, 1993 - August 15, 1997
Associate of Arts in Computer Science - Management Information Systems