Meet Satish Alluri, the Deputy Program Manager for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Grants Management Modernization initiative. He recently graduated from the selective ACT-IAC Voyagers Professional Development fellowship. A longtime Karsun team member, he has held several positions including Senior Business Analyst and Scrum Master serving both our DHS FEMA and GSA programs.
We sat down with Satish Alluri to hear his advice on advancing your product, delivery, and program career. Learn about his tenure at Karsun plus his secrets for growing as an enterprise modernization expert.
Life as Program Manager at Karsun Solutions
How would you describe your role at Karsun?
I am currently serving as the Deputy Program Manager for our FEMA GMM modernization contract and assist in the overall program management. My key responsibilities include employee engagement, motivating the team towards successful and continuous Product Delivery and also provide operational oversight for the Process and Product Management disciplines within our program.
How did you end up at Karsun?
Over the past several years, I had worked in various consultant opportunities and one of those stints gave me a chance to work with some of the now seasoned Karsun employees. This past relationship paved the path for me to join Karsun in 2015. I joined as a Senior Business Analyst and gradually progressed in my career. During my current tenure, I supported the GSA program in different roles as a Senior Business Analyst, Scrum Master, and now supporting the FEMA program.
What is your main goal or focus?
Given my background, I have always been aligned with Product Strategy and Delivery. My career goals have been getting into Program Management, Product Management, seeking an opportunity to lead, collaborate, and oversee a big team and eventually run a successful program.
What gets you excited to come to work here?
Coming to the office gives me the opportunity to talk and collaborate with my peers. That’s pretty much what excites me. The kind of work that we do, the things that we deliver, it’s an evolutionary process. The key aspects are meeting people, talking to people, and helping things get delivered for the federal government.
What do you love most about the culture at Karsun Solutions?
I think there’s a certain openness within the company. I can openly collaborate with my peers on different ideas at Karsun. Whether it is my supervisor, colleagues, or the CEO, I can walk around and find somebody to share that idea. Even if it doesn’t get implemented, the conversation that happens is engaging enough for me to go back and think through it and come back with more food for thought. The openness of these conversations and the support structure around us employees is personally the favorite part of the culture here.
Do you have any unique traditions that you feel embody Karsun’s culture?
When I was supporting our GSA program, we used to follow the national day program and that pretty much set the mood for that day. Another of my favorite traditions are the Plank challenges in our FEMA program and also the potlucks at the office. Our last Thanksgiving Potluck was very successful and gave us an opportunity to be relaxed and work in a casual environment. Although the recent situation has disrupted some of these traditions, I am looking forward to getting back into the office and engaging more in-person fun activities with my colleagues.
Envisioning a Future at Karsun
What are you most excited about for the future of the company?
When I joined Karsun, it was a small business and while I was supporting the GSA program, we were awarded the FAA contract and now the FEMA contract. As we are turning towards becoming a large organization, the prospects that I see for myself within this growth is what excites me the most.
What is your experience with professional development at Karsun?
For myself, when I approached my supervisor regarding certain certifications, it was welcomed. Actually, after joining Karsun, I went through a couple of certifications: Certified Scrum Product Owner, Certified Agile Leadership, Certified Scrum Professional, and the Voyagers Program. This states what the company gives its employees. If an employee can speak up, there are always opportunities here.
What is your relationship like with your manager?
It is a great relationship. Some of the things I have done at Karsun would not be possible without his cooperation. His openness and upfront attitude towards giving timely feedback helped me improve certain things. When there were aspects I did not do what had to be done, he was quick and upfront about it. He gave constructive feedback and gave me guidance on how I could fix it.
What can you tell us about Mentorship with Karsun?
It’s the relationship that you have with your supervisor. It’s your career. Tell them what you want to further enhance your career. There was a dialogue with all my supervisors across the different programs. They tell me what I could do, and I ask them questions. I think it comes back to employee openness and finding a way to connect with your supervisor and senior colleagues.
Advice to Future Team Members: Be Open, Be Honest
What is one quality people need to be successful at Karsun?
At a company like Karsun, you have to be open, communicative, and responsive. If you are somebody who just sits at your cubicle, you might find it tough to be successful at this company. You need to open up and say this is what I can do and how I can contribute towards company success. The reason I say that is because it is a growing company and as we are growing from a small to a large organization every employee will have a way they can contribute to that growth.
What advice would you have for a candidate coming to interview?
The one piece of advice I would give is to be honest. As I said, Karsun is a growing company. It is important that the people we are hiring are as they present themselves in the interview. There’s a decent opportunity for growth based on the skillset you present in the interview. Being honest in the interview, saying what you have done in the past and what you can do is very critical. Just keep it straight.
Karsun Solutions celebrated the graduation of Satish Alluri from the American Council for Technology and Industry Advisory Council (ACT-IAC) Voyagers Program. Alluri is the firm’s tenth graduate from an ACT-IAC professional development fellowship. With just a decade in business, this is a notable milestone for the fast-growing enterprise modernization company. Graduates were recognized at ACT-IAC’s Vision 2020: Voyager Graduation and Fellows Reunion.
Comprising 32 industry and government professionals, program participants were nominated by their respective government agency or company sponsor and evaluated by a panel of senior government and industry executives. One of three professional development tracks from ACT-IAC, industry participants are first matched with their government counterparts. They then work on shared projects together leading up to capstone events or panels. At the same time, the program pairs participants with an industry leader who mentors them throughout the program.
Satish Alluri, represented Karsun as a member of ACT-IAC’s 2020 Voyagers Class. He is currently serving as the Deputy Program Manager on an $80 million Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Grants Management Modernization initiative. A motivated and recognized leader, he has 14+ years of experience in implementing a wide variety of IT solutions and modernization. His efforts extend across public sector industries and different federal agencies including the General Services Administration (GSA). He also has experience in the financial industry. He actively pursued industry-standard certifications including Scrum Master (CSM), Product Owner (CSPO), Scrum Professional (CSP), and Certified Agile Leader (CAL). An advocate of continuous learning, he engages in multiple Communities of Interest. This will be the tenth class with a Karsun Solutions team member.
Celebrating its tenth year in operations, Karsun Solutions’ development is closely intertwined with the growth of ACT-IAC’s professional development fellowships. Karsun team members frequently engage in these programs as both participants and mentors. Juan Robles, Senior Director of Business Development and Voyagers Program graduate, served as an Industry Vice Chairs for the current Voyagers class. Terry Miller, Karsun COO and Partners Program graduate, supported the program as a mentor. He was also the Industry Chair for the Partners Program in 2019, ACT-IAC’s professional development program for executives and senior leadership.
This year the graduates and their mentors celebrated virtually. The August 17 event titled Vision 2020 explored leadership challenges and the evolving landscape as a result of Covid19. The Voyager candidates assembled a panel that shared their insights on the future of leadership post Covid19. Talks included a panel with past Voyagers on “Where are they now”, “Where are we headed”, and “Leading thru Crisis”.
As part of their journey at Karsun Solutions employees participate in industry led professional development programs. Among these are the leadership programs, working groups and events sponsored by the American Council for Technology and Industry Advisory Council (ACT-IAC). ACT-IAC recently selected Karsun team members to both participate, and serve as leaders, in the highly-selective 2020 Voyagers Program. The purpose of this program is to prepare mid-level managers for their future roles in industry and Government.
Satish Alluri, a Business Analysis Lead at Karsun Solutions, will join as a member of ACT-IAC’s 2020 Voyagers Class. This year’s class of 32 is comprised of both industry and government professionals. Participants were nominated by their respective government agency or company sponsor and evaluated by a panel of senior government and industry executives. Participants spend the year building a relationship with their government counterparts. Karsun Solutions employees frequently participate in these mentorship programs. This will be the tenth class with a Karsun Solutions team member.
Mr. Alluri is a highly engaged, innovative individual managing overall analysis operations for a team of 20+ analysts on a 5-year $80 million Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) initiative. A motivated and recognized leader, he has 14 years of experience in implementing a wide variety of IT solutions and modernization. His efforts extend across public sector industries and different federal agencies including the General Services Administration (GSA). He also has experience in the financial industry. He actively pursued industry standard certifications including Scrum Master (CSM), Product Owner (CSPO), Scrum Professional (CSP) and Certified Agile Leader (CAL). An advocate of continuous learning, he engages in multiple Communities of Interest.
The organization also named Juan Robles, Senior Director of Business Development at Karsun Solutions, one of the Industry Vice Chairs for the current Voyagers class. Robles graduated from the ACT-IAC Voyagers program in 2017. He previously served as the Treasurer of the Young AFCEA Bethesda board of officers for which he received the 2015-2016 Distinguished Service Award.
At Karsun Solutions he leads business development, capture, and pricing and is responsible for driving sustained growth in the Federal sector. Prior to joining Karsun, he served as a Federal BD Manager at VIP, Unisys, Harris and CSC (Now part of GDIT).
Beyond the 2020 Voyagers Program, Karsun Solutions engages in other ACT-IAC fellowship opportunities, both as member and mentor. Chief Operating Officer Terry Miller is the Industry Chair for the Partners Program, which is ACT-IAC’s fellowship program for executives and senior leadership. Shaunak Ashtaputre, a Director at Karsun Solutions, is a member of the 2019 Partners Class. This fellowship cohort will be recognized at ACT-IAC’s Imagine Nation – ELC Conference October 20th-23rd in Philadelphia.