Becoming a Mulesoft Delivery Champion
My experience and tips for completing the Mulesoft Delivery Champion program, in hopes to help other aspirants with their journey.
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Mulesoft has recently launched the Mulesoft Delivery Champion program to recognize Mulesoft architects with the ability to implement the Mulesoft Anypoint Platform at an enterprise scale. The completion of this program demonstrates the ability of a 360-degree Mulesoft architect who understands Best Practices, Mulesoft Catalyst IP, and Mulesoft Accelerators, along with Mulesoft Product Knowledge.
This also measures an individual's skill in designing and presenting the detailed platform architecture based on business and Non-Functional Requirements. Since the Delivery Champion program is designed completely in a different way than any other Mulesoft Certification program (or for that matter, most of the Industry certification programs) so I thought sharing my journey to becoming a Delivery Champion might become some help for other Mulesoft architects aspiring for this Delivery Champion Program.
Delivery Champion Program is designed for certified Mulesoft Architects. So as a prerequisite someone needs to be a certified Mulesoft Integration Architect (MCIA) or Mulesoft Certified Platform Architect (MCPA).
The next step is for that Mulesoft architect name to be nominated for the Mulesoft Delivery Champion program and nomination to be shared by the Organization to Mulesoft Partner Enablement Manager. I was nominated by TCS Mulesoft Technology Head Ranjit Pillai for this program and was shared by Harman Jeet Singh Chadha (Partner Enablement Manager, Mulesoft India).
Before we get into more details on some of the tips and tricks on how to be a Delivery Champion, let us first spend a moment to understand what the final goal for a Delivery Champion is.
At the final step, the aspirant needs to submit a 45 to 50-minute long video comprised of a presentation that presents a real-life customer case study under an industry domain (this needs to be a 30 minutes presentation) followed by a Demo walkthrough (limit the demo to no less than 15 minutes and no more than 20 minutes). This submission will be evaluated by the Mulesoft field service team.
The submission should cover a solution that showcases how Mulesoft enables digital transformation initiatives for an organization encompassing business alignment, platform architecture, and building using Mulesoft Catalyst Methodology. The presentation will be evaluated on a scale of 3500 points and the Demo walkthrough will be evaluated on 1500 points. 3 reviewers from Mulesoft will review and provide scores and an average 70% score is required at minimum to achieve the coveted Mulesoft Delivery Champion Certificate.
Now that the final goal is clear, let’s take the first step towards our goal to be a delivery champion. Once selected, the delivery champion program for an individual will be enabled on Mindtickle to start. Before starting the program on Mindtickle it is advisable to take a pause and select an appropriate case study where an individual can demonstrate how Mulesoft as a platform has been implemented to resolve critical business disruptions for a customer and what was the benefit in terms of business outcome has been achieved after Mulesoft implementation.
Let’s take a pause here to discuss a few key tips. The reason is selecting the correct case study is the key to success in this program. As an architect, an individual might be experienced in Mulesoft implementation for multiple customers. So, choosing one most apt for this program among all becomes difficult. My experience is it is always better to choose the case study whereas a Mulesoft architect individual has got an opportunity to closely work with business during the Mulesoft implementation. Also, individuals having a piece of deep domain knowledge in any specific industry vertical are always advisable to select a case study from that vertical.
So, for example, if one individual has experience as a Mulesoft architect to implement digital experience for a retail company and is experienced in Mule 3 to Mule 4 upgrade for a banking customer, then it is better to choose the first one for the Delivery Champion program. This is not required that the case study present need to be the present assignment of the aspirants. Also, it is fine not to disclose the customer’s name in the presentation and in the final submission. The other key point to remember is that it is absolutely necessary to share the Non-Functional Requirements of the Mulesoft platform and some qualitative measurements to showcase the return on investment achieved after Mulesoft platform implementation. So, while selecting the industry case study, considering the above facts will give an edge.
Now, once the industry case study is decided, it is wise to go through the Industry Champion Program (contact a Mulesoft Partner Enablement Manager to unlock the Industry Champion Program on Mindtickle). Mulesoft has done a lot of research and provides lots of case studies from all major industry verticals.
Once you've decided the business case to be presented, then as a prep step for the Delivery Champion program, it is good to complete the Industry Champion designed on the specific industry under which the business case for Delivery Champion submission will fall. This is helpful to keep the Industry Champion deck developed by Mulesoft handy while preparing the industry case study for Delivery Champion submission.
Once the prep work is done and the industry case study is decided, now it is time to start on the Delivery Champion submission. Mulesoft will organize a Delivery Champion Workshop once the nomination is finalized for the quarter. This workshop is a must to attain since Mulesoft conducts a 2-hour long intense session and provides detailed direction on how to proceed on Delivery Champion. This workshop will clarify all doubts and help to plan the submission.
On Mindtickle, before reaching to final submission stage, there are 3 refresher courses aspirants need to complete. These courses are on the Mulesoft Catalyst track, Mulesoft Architecture Patterns track and Mulesoft Offered Assets and Accelerators track. The Delivery Champion submission will not get unlocked unless these courses are completed.
Once the Mindtickle Delivery Champion steps get enabled, the first thing to do is download the template Mulesoft created to guide aspirants on what is expected to be covered in the presentation for Delivery Champion. However, individuals are supposed to use their own templates for presentation and Mulesoft also allows modification of the storyline to best present the industry case study.
One tip to create the deck is to, before working on a slide in the deck, first think what the key message of that deck will be and how well the deck can depict the keynotes without creating any confusion for the reviewer. Cover the topic on every slide completely and provide all necessary explanations so that the reviewer can clearly understand the rationale behind any decision made in platform setup (for example, why a specific deployment model is chosen by the customer over any other deployment model).
A few key points to remember while preparing the deck are:
- The first few slides should show the business outcome of the case study, not the IT initiatives. Voiceover on these slides should cover business and domain terms as much as possible.
- Business outcome elaboration should quantify the benefits with proper figures and statistics.
- How through API-led connectivity reuse and composability is achieved and how project delivery accelerated (and with what factor). Show the reduction in project go-live timeline over time because of Mulesoft API-led connectivity strategy.
- On the platform architecture, mention the NFR statistics like Throughput, Average Response Time, etc.
- Showcase how the Mulesoft Anypoint platform is realized across the enterprise.
- Every slide in the deck should be prepared within the context of the customer/industry that has been chosen as the case study.
- Share the facts which were the driving factor behind the strategy in Mulesoft platform setup and enablement for that customer. For example, it is not expected to explain what CI/CD pipeline is and how it can be implemented in Mulesoft. Rather, the expectation is to demonstrate how the CI/CD pipeline was created for Mulesoft delivery for the customer, what part is automated, what part is manual and why in the pipeline, what are the tools used, etc.
- The demo walkthrough can be done using the original customer implementation. If that is not possible due to some NDA agreement then a demo can be created on the own organization’s Anypoint platform or trial version Anypoint platform.
- Any critical business case implemented in Mulesoft can be selected. The key emphasis on the demo is how the Mulesoft platform can help in design, API management, Run time management, alerting, and monitoring. Standards and best practices of Mulesoft development need to be highlighted. The business case for the demo needs to be clearly articulated so that reviewer can understand the objective clearly.
Third and Final Step
Once the first draft presentation deck is ready Mulesoft will arrange for a review session with Mulesoft Principal Architect and Partner Enablement Management. I have gone through 3 rounds of review sessions with Arnab Sengupta (Mulesoft Principal Architect) and Harman Jeet Singh Chadha (Partner Enablement Manager, Mulesoft India) to make my deck ready for submission. These are very intense review sessions and a real learning curve. Based on the review comments, individuals are supposed to work on the deck and clear any doubts, since the review session is planned to help the aspirants to clear Delivery Champion in the first attempt. So once the presentation deck and demo are ready, then the individual needs to work on the recording and submit the video.
Please ensure your submission are not be more than 45 to 50-minutes long (and not less than that also). Every second of the presentation counts, so try to work on the presentation since it must be time-bounded. Plan every slide and decide beforehand how much time to spend on every slide to finish the presentation within the timeline. Keywords like Cloudhub, VPC, VPN, Identity Management, Reliable Messaging, NFR, RTF, API Led, etc., in the voiceover will strengthen the submission further.
Overall, it takes around 2 months to complete the submission (considering the fact aspirants also have their daily delivery responsibilities).
Hope this article helps and all the best for your Delivery Champion program!
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