Nathaniel Harward San Francisco, CA

Executive Summary

Results oriented engineering leader; getting things done in small and Fortune 100 online retail environments for more than a decade. Innovative and curious with a very strong technical background. Depth of knowledge and experience to manage, grow and technically challenge teams to think through and come up with the best possible solutions. Drives teams to analyze, design and most importantly deliver creative solutions to real problems. Partners with business owners to learn where they want to go and what they really need to do it - then get it done.

Professional Experience

Engineering Director at Red Beacon / Techshed (acquired by The Home Depot), June 2016 to Present.
  • Define/implementing a new business and SDLC process to accelerate feature development
  • Driving migration and adoption of container technology throughout Engineering and IT
  • Growing and mentoring engineering managers in their roles
VP Engineering at One King's Lane, November 2014 to June 2016.
  • Rebuilt teams in key areas to re-enable the business where it was previously stalled
  • Oversaw a complete overhaul/replacement of a critical but unsupportable legacy system to one using current, supportable, industry-standard technologies; this resulted in numerous people and systems cost savings, enablement of new initiatives and reduced data turnaround from daily to hourly
  • Worked with extended leadership team to define and execute project plan
  • Provided mentoring and technical guidance (and sometimes coding) to team members
  • Brought an estranged team back into the fold improving morale, collaboration and ultimately system stability
Senior Director, IT at Sears Holdings Corporation, May 2010 - September 2013 (Director) to September 2013 - November 2014 (Sr. Director).
  • Partner and build relationships with engineering and business stakeholders to define product roadmaps and delivery timelines
  • Engage with engineering leadership to help define a new development methodology and associated tools/processes
  • Responsible for integration, middle-tier and system of record for both the Sears Marketplace B2B Portal and Online PIM systems
  • Engage and work with technical stakeholders in disparate systems to define (and sometimes design) integration points
  • Manage full-time employees along with on and off-shore contractors in various countries
  • Provide continued technical/design direction for both the application teams and for the technology platform
Senior Engineering Manager at Sears Holdings Corporation, April 2009 to May 2010.
  • Designed and managed delivery of two extremely low cost middleware platforms (one patent pending) that are the heart of the daily management of the company's 100+ million items - zero failures in either one for 4 years and counting.
  • Managed several teams of on and off-shore engineers working on various back-end data processing systems
  • Delivered first production Hadoop system at SHC
  • Effectively managed and scoped requirements to meet hard delivery deadlines
Senior Platform Architect at Sears Holdings Corporation, February 2008 to April 2009.
  • Designed a scalable and durable distributed message processing system; far simpler/easier/cheaper than JMS
  • Designed and implemented a Java IPC mechanism for highly scalable processing with a simple programming interface - now ubiquitous in our systems
  • Designed and co-implemented SOA system for a customer repository, shopping cart, preferences, etc. accessible via a REST-ful web service layer and POJO library
  • Automating catalog/inventory feeds for the Sears Outlet web site
  • Automating and simplifying the build/test/deployment process for e-commerce applications
  • SME for replacement of IBM's ClearQuest product with JIRA
  • SME for replacement of IBM's ClearCase product with Subversion
Senior Platform Architect at MediaMaster, Inc., August 2007 to February 2008.
  • Implementation of a distributed file storage subsystem, including on-demand realtime audio transcoding (Java front end, C/C++ backend)
  • Backport to Entagged of changes to support MPEG-4 audio, image tags and Apple extensions for .m4a/.m4p files
  • Implemented utility code in Erlang to parse MP3 streams to find corrupted frames in customers problematic audio files
  • Augmentation of music upload applet UI
Senior Software Engineer at Terracotta, Inc. (acquired by Software AG), March 2004 to August 2007. Employee #1 and core engineer.
  • Core member of the HA-JDBC team (product discontinued in 2006) including design, architecture and implementation from scratch (Java and C++ on Solaris and Linux)
  • Co-designed / implemented an encapsulated JMX transport and publishing subsystem for internal use in the DSO product, used between client(s), server and GUI console
  • Tech lead for DSO integration team
Staff Engineer at, 2000 to March 2004.
  • Tech lead for third-party systems integration
  • Architecture and implementation of the transport layer for the next generation fulfillment system, co-patented as U.S. patent #7,822,779
  • Store locator: design and implementation of vendor-independent integration layer; two vendor plugin implementations written including MapQuest
  • Photo site integration and enhancement, including fulfillment and dynamic cross-vendor catalog pricing
  • Administration and maintenance of backend tax software, including a necessary port of vendor software to Linux
  • Misc. / systems programming, including port of web platform to a new operating system
Software Engineer at (acquired by in 2000), 2000 to 2000.
  • Co-developed the checkout and 'your account' portions of the website
  • Helped re-factor common code between the web and customer service applications, reducing code complexity and discontinuity
  • Worked with operations team to improve system architecture
  • Contributed the GSP syntax file to Vim
Software Engineer at Nextera Interactive, November 1999 to April 2000.
  • Part of a team that developed a three-tier financial web application. Technologies include JDBC with Sybase, and a Java / DCOM bridge in a Windows environment
Systems Developer / Oracle Reporting at Corporate Express, Inc., March 1998 to November 1999.
  • Migration and administration of Documentum DocBase server from HP-UX to Solaris, including Oracle database upgrade/migration. Included full Documentum installations on both HP-UX and Solaris, day to day administration, and design and development of document archiving strategy
  • Custom PL/SQL program development for internal/external customers with shell script wrappers for use by reporting team
  • Augmentation of internal web application for reporting: PL/SQL and ANSI C systems programming on HP-UX and Solaris
  • Bourne/korn shell scripting, including a centrally configurable scheduled FTP transfer script and several Documentum archive scripts
  • Built/administered small web/ftp server for internal customers to receive large files not accessible through company standard means of distribution
  • Unix shell scripting to assist internal support staff and reporting team
  • Support operational billing and reporting, troubleshoot and fix operational problems
System Administrator / Software Engineer at, August 1997 to February 1998.
  • Managed company LAN and WAN network interfaces for an ISP including virtual domain administration (mail, ftp, web access) for client accounts. Configured and maintained hardware and software components (Ascend and Cisco routers used)
  • Custom client CGI/JavaScript programming: Perl, C, ASP
Perl Programmer at University of Colorado at Boulder, WebWorks / ITRC, August 1996 to August 1997.
  • Created a suite of centrally customizable web based administrative programs including support for encrypted password protection as well as data validation
  • Co-developed web application to accept information from prospective college students on-line to be processed by admissions office