Pradeep Henry

Expertise: Strategy translation in software practice,
through Discovery-and-Design


Biggest impact: As Director (practice), played
a proven role in the competitive differentiation and
fast growth of Dun & Bradstreet spinoff Cognizant


Change leadership: Created change at company,
national, and industry levels


Innovations: Created 3 outcome-driven methods
that delivered new value to 150+ organizations


Author: Authored a book and several articles


Columbia alum: Columbia Business School's
Certificate in Business Excellence (exec edu)


Henry's experience

Since January 2008

  • Co-founder, The Evident Group LLC, USA: Was Indian partner of Value Innovations Inc, USA; Was partner of India center of Nimbus UK
  • Ambassador (strategic technology), Compass Business Club, UK
  • Creator, Discovery-and-Design method called oil-drilling model that front-ends conventional software development practice (SDLC) and brings predictability to generating targeted strategic outcomes
  • Author, Business & Technology blog with over 230 posts … Was blogger/speaker for Nasscom, India’s chamber of commerce for IT
  • Presenter, Corporate seminars/webinars and guest lectures at B schools and engineering schools
  • Mentor, Career Network @ Columbia Business School
  • Education during this period: Columbia Business School, University of Texas @ Austin, and GD360

Cognizant Technology Solutions, Director (practice), 1996 - 2007

Set up and led two “horizontal” practice groups that differentiated Cognizant in the marketplace and contributed to the company's fast growth.

One group was focused on the design of user interfaces for business applications. It started with the conventional user-centric approach, but the group soon switched to a business process centric approach called PCD that Henry created. The PCD team executed 175+ projects delivering unprecedented levels of productivity to dozens of customer organizations.

The other practice group was focused on the integral design of software and business change. The target was business process efficiency and the method was Henry’s Process-Efficient Technology or PET (precursor to the oil-drilling model). The small PET team comprising uniquely-trained business analysts executed several integral design projects for Cognizant customers.

Henry's introduction of human factors into Cognizant's software process differentiated the company in the 90s. Later, his introduction of business factors into Cognizant's software process sustained the differentiation. Customers loved Henry's teams due to business outcomes orientation and thought-leadership. Therefore Cognizant powerfully used these teams in the sales cycle as well — to win new clients. Besides direct billing, the teams often triggered large pull-through revenues.

Early-career employers, 1986 - 1996

Set up and led the user assistance development (technical writing) practice at Tata Consultancy Services; earlier worked at 3 other companies including CMC Limited.



Henry's Hall of Change

  • Right now, Henry is driven to turn software projects into strategic initiatives; Previously, he …
  • Set up the world’s first business process centric software practice at Cognizant Technology Solutions (now a $10+ billion firm)
  • Brought user-centric skills to tech-centric India in the early 2000s (Indian IT today is a $100+ billion industry)
  • Shared his new technical writing method with the global technical writing community in the 90s
  • Set up the technical writing practice at TCS back in the late 80s (TCS today is a 300,000-person firm)



Henry's outcome-driven methods

Strategy-driven discovery-and-design (oil-drilling model)

This is a Discovery-and-Design method that front-ends conventional software development practice (SDLC) and brings predictability to generating targeted strategic outcomes. The method integrates software and business change, thus enabling the creation of a blended business architecture. This architecture packs the potential to generate outcomes in terms of business process performance, customer value, and financial performance. Read article: Software Practice for the Business Technology Age: Lessons from Oil-Drilling.

Business process centric user interface design (PCD)

Used in 175+ projects executed for Cognizant customers, PCD views the user interface of business applications as business process (rather than merely as human-computer interaction medium). PCD delivered 20% to 30% higher user productivity gains and software-level business process improvements. Henry institutionalized this method at Cognizant through a Change initiative. Read the 2007 article: Process - user interface alignment: new value from a new level of alignment

Software usability driven technical writing (UCID)

This is an integrated approach for technical writing where the objective is "better software usability" rather than the traditional “better quality documentation.” First introduced through Henry's 90s book, the idea is now common. Read about Henry's book here:




Initiated and led 10 research/study projects in topics like business value of IT and impact of business process centric UI design on learnability and system performance.



Henry's publications



Henry speaking

In the United States

  • The IT-to-BT Move: Take Advantage of the Change Leader in You (webinar for US audience)
  • Panel @ ACM CHI 2005 Conference, Portland, Oregon, USA
  • HCI 2005 Conference, Las Vegas, USA
  • Corporate training for Unisys USA and Sallie Mae USA

In India

  • Importance of business focus in technology projects, Madras Christian College
  • Business Technology & Innovation, Volvo
  • Business Technology & Innovation, TiE
  • The IT-to-BT Move: What Students Should Know, Saveetha College of Engineering
  • The IT-to-BT Move: A Sneak-Peek, Hindustan Institute of Technology & Science
  • Business Process Centric Software Development, Nasscom event
  • The Social Network: Lessons for Entrepreneurs, TiE event
  • How Leaders Make Change Happen, Nasscom event
  • Blue Ocean Strategy & Process Centric Design, Great Lakes Institute of Management
  • More presentations: QAI and STC conferences in India, etc



Leadership of professional associations

  • Founder/chair, an ACM chapter in India
  • Founder/chair, Institute for Process-Efficient Technology



Henry hosting conferences




BITS, Pilani: Pioneered a 5-credit User Interface course for Masters degree program in Software Engineering (2004). Proposed the course, designed it, and trained the faculty.



Citations & favorable reviews




  • Wizard of Cognizant:, 2002
  • Innovator of business process centric approach: Computer Society of India Communications, 2007
  • Distinguished professional: IEEE Professional Communication Society, USA, 1993
  • Who’s Who in the World, USA, Millennium Edition 2000




  • Forrester Research, USA, August 31, 2006
  • Media interviews: CIO India, The Times of India, The Financial Express, The Hindu Business Line, The Week, Express Computer
  • eWeek, USA, Henry could not honor invitation to travel to the US for the GREAT MINDS video interview
  • Academia interview: Great Lakes Institute of Management for their Gravity magazine



Strategic Management Society

  • Member, Strategic Management Society, USA
  • Senior Member, Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), USA
  • Past member: Association of Business Process Management Professionals (ABPMP) USA, International Institute of Business Analysis (IIBA) USA, Institute of Management Consultants (IMC) USA, TiE India, and IEEE USA



Henry education

  • Columbia Business School, Received alumnus status and “Certificate in Business Excellence” (Executive Edu) April/May 2008 … Completed two programs: (a) Leading Strategic Growth & Change (b) Columbia Essentials of Management (mini-MBA)
  • University of Texas @ Austin (online), Innovation Readiness, April/May 2012
  • Indian Institute of Management, Management Development Program for Senior Managers, 2003
  • University of California, Berkeley (Ext), Software Usability Engineering, 1994 - 1995
  • Madras Christian College, Journalism & Mass Communication, 1985 - 1986
  • University of Madras, Bachelor of Science, Physics, 1981 - 1984



Henry in front of Statue of Liberty

  • Family: Wife and daughter
  • Locations: Grew up in India, also lived in the US for over a year (1994-95)