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Podcast: The Platform Episode 5

This podcast is part of the the Platform 'Data-driven innovation' serie



5. Data-driven Leadership

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The exponential growth of data inside organizations requires integration to optimize the business outcome business leaders are striving for. They want to optimize the use of data generated by their systems and ‘things’. 
However, how do you do that? Where do you get started? What does the required architecture look like? In the Platform podcast series DATA DRIVEN INNOVATION Ed Macosky, VP of Product @Boomi and Mike Veldhuis, Partner @Nalta, will dig into these topics. Listen to learn and for a bit of fun too!

Want to know even more and ask your own questions? Then register for the (English) online Masterclass, provided by Ed Macosky.


Episode Notes

The Platform Website: https://www.nalta.com/theplatform
All Nalta Blogs: https://www.nalta.com/blog

Host, Mike Veldhuis

Guest, Ed Macosky


Mike Veldhuis 0:00
You are listening to the platform. Podcast to learn about our digital world. I am Mike Veldhuis partner at Nalta.com. I'm Ed Macosky, head of products at Boomi. Welcome to a new episode of The Platform and with a new guest Ed Macosky. Hi, Ed. Hey, Mike, thanks for having me. How are you doing? I'm awesome. How are you? Oh, man, it's 22:00 o'clock local time, Central European Time. And normally I'm preparing to go to bed. I'm a person who gets up early and goes to bed early. So I really had to ramp up with a good energy for this podcast. But it's great fun to do, and a great honour that you want to be part of four episodes and the master class.

Ed Macosky 0:59
Yeah, I'm looking forward to it. And thank you for treating me. Well, it's only one o'clock Pacific here where I'm at in the San Francisco Bay Area. So I'm right in the middle of my day. Looking forward to this.

Mike Veldhuis 1:10
I had a lovely day, it's Californian weather today here in in the Netherlands, blue skies, great temperature. So I received a lot of solar energy today to give a fantastic first episode of The Platform, Episode One data driven leadership. And what we're going to do today is really kick off this new series, which will end at the 14th of July with a master class that will be presented by you and I will have a part in it as well. And what we're going to do in this series is that we're really gonna explain how to become a data driven company. And in the first four episodes of this podcast series, I presented with Michael J. Morton, about becoming an intelligent business. But to get there, you have to have your data environments in check, you know. So that's what we're going to talk about today. But first, a proper introduction of of you Ed. Because what's kind of not funny, but interesting is that you've been working for Boomi for a very, very long time, right?

Ed Macosky 2:32
Yeah, I'm, like I say I'm one of the original Boomers. So yeah, back in 2003. I started at Boomi. I was employee eight or nine, me and one of my buddies at a college, Dan Morris, started on the same day, which by the way, shout out to Dan, he is also still with Boomi. So we like to debate, who is employee eight or nine, but I'm pretty sure I walked in the door first. So...

Mike Veldhuis 2:58
But you didn't stay at Boomi for the whole duration up till now. Right?

Unknown Speaker 3:03
No, yeah, I mean, I was with Boomi, from 2003 to 14. So was, you know, early on, did a bunch of integration implementation work actually built the professional services, support team customer success, etc. and was part of the company when we were originally acquired by Dell in 2010. At which point then I continued building mostly focusing on professional services, training, that sort of thing. But in 2013, I took over engineering, so I ran R&D for a year. And then, you know, I was literally the the last manager, you know, still with the company following an acquisition, four years. post that acquisition three, not four years. And, you know, the people that work in the startup mode, typically get that itch a little bit, all of my friends, I like to say all my friends were gone. And I was looking around. And yeah, I had another opportunity to pick up my family and moved from the east coast, the United States, where Boomi is headquartered out to the west coast, to the San Francisco Bay Area, and I joined Oracle for five years and had a couple of executive roles there, and the Middleware and iPaas spaces, launched a competitive product to Boomi while I was there, but also on the Magic Quadrant. But you know, wouldn't trade my time in for the world, but at the same time realised, you know, my love for Boomi's technology kind of increased during that time, the grass wasn't necessarily greener from a product and technology perspective. So the stars aligned, and I, you know, called Chris McNabb, who was, you know, our CEO, and, you know, there was a match there at that point came back to run product for Boomi a little over two years ago now. So I've been doing that since.

Mike Veldhuis 4:50
What is kind of inspiring. Thank you for this personal story, by the way. What is inspiring is that we're gonna and we want to explain how to become I'm a data driven company. And actually, that's exactly what you've done with Boomi. Right? Since 2003. Create a platform that enables companies to become a data driven company. But you in the, in the process, you became it yourself.

Ed Macosky 5:17
Yes, we became even our own platform is, the way we operate is data driven, particularly now from a product management perspective on any platform, or any product out there nowadays should be doing this, but we make our decisions not only from a company, but from a roadmap and implementation perspective, based on data. We do we do tracking of user behaviours, we do tracking features that are that are being used. From a connectivity standpoint, we know what our top connectivity and end points are. Those types of things that help us make our products better for our customers, but we also know, internally, things like the, employee onboarding, we can track employees as they're making progress as their onboarding and coming into our business making sure that when they're, their first impression of us as employees is a top impression. And we guide them through a journey and onboarding as a company. So we use our own technology, even internally to help with some of these data driven things as well.

Mike Veldhuis 6:17
Yeah, you share those examples as well on on the events. Onboarding is always a huge topic that you love to talk about. But the cool thing in this podcast series, in Episode Three, we're going to talk about future, and how you connect things, and all the things that are happening around us that generate data, how you can drive value from it. I'm really looking forward to Episode Three, by the way.

Unknown Speaker 6:46
Yeah the same, I almost I want to launch into it right now. But

Mike Veldhuis 6:52
We have to prepare our audience till that episode. And maybe you've talked a little bit about blockchain, don't know. We don't know, we're gonna look. Working in Boomi now, and we have to have this out of the room. Everybody probably knows listening to the podcast that Boomi has been part of the Dell community for several years. And it's gonna leave the Dell community at the end of this year, right.

Ed Macosky 7:22
Yeah, that's the expectation. Yeah.

Mike Veldhuis 7:25
What does it mean for you as a person?

Ed Macosky 7:29
So I'm excited about it. I mean, we made the announcement a few weeks ago, as part of the executive team, we, I and we have been working through this process for a while along with Dell, Dell has been an amazing parent, for us for the last, you know, 10 plus years now that we've been part of the Dell family. But Boomi has been for the last number of years, its own, you know, wholly owned by Dell business within the Dell Technologies family. So we've been operating with our own CEO, reporting up through that chain and growing, you know, kind of pretty drastically, and the stars just finally align that we feel like it's, it's time for Boomi to grow up and leave the nest of Dell and go off on our own. And Dell feels the same way. And as you know, I don't want to speak for the entire executive team. But I know for me personally, I'm really excited about, you know, working with some new investment partners that are, you know, willing and anxious and able to enable to focus with us and really, really drive the business forward for for not just us personal, immediate personally, but, but for our customers. I'm really excited about, you know, investing more in the roadmap and that sort of thing. So a lot of cool stuff ahead.

Mike Veldhuis 8:39
You probably get a lot of these questions. A little bit of a secret. I get those, too, because I've been messaging so much around Boomi over the last couple of years, that actually the press came to me, what do you think about Boomi leaving Dell so actually wrote a blog and shared it online, but what I didn't write down is... I wrote down the obvious stuff, which is in the press release with Boomi. And I not want to drill into that today. We're gonna talk about data driven companies, right. But the funny thing is, and it may be it's a great bridge to our next topic is what it brought us Dell acquiring Boomi is like mainstream integration. So we already were a Dell partner. We sold their infrastructure solution suite. Those are great. We're still doing that. But we were watching very closely what kind of acquisitions they were doing. And in, I think, in 2015 Boomi was already a part of the Dell community. And we travelled to Austin to Dell World, to actually figure out what Boomi could do for us. And we were onboarded with the great process, very fast and started kicking off and implementing Boomi into our solutions like Blue Force tracking that we're going to discuss in Episode Four of this series. So for us, it was like a Kickstarter into this world where we could combine solutions, especially in the IT, arena. And so we're very thankful for it. And was kind of a bummer that we learned that he left the community, but we're very positive that Boomi will be able to be far more innovative than they were the last 10 years.

Ed Macosky 10:48
Yeah, I mean, I would say for one, Dell helped put us on the map, when when Dell acquired us, we are a we're a very small startup, even at that point.

Mike Veldhuis 10:56
How many people were working at Boomi?

Ed Macosky 10:59
I want to say roughly 40 to 60 people somewhere in that range. And at this point, we're, we're well over 1000 employees dedicated to the Boomi business going with us. So you know, it was it was small at that point, and they put us on the map, they made a lot of, gave us some street cred, so to speak and invested in us, you know, through partnerships they helped us make and just really just being, our advocate out in the market. And I would say to you know, although we're not going to be necessarily part of the Dell Technologies, family, we're specifically working on keeping that tight partnership with Dell. I do think through contracts and things we have and the way we partner with them, a lot of those types of things are going to remain in place. And so I wouldn't, those listeners out there that have seen us as part of the Dell community, I don't think we're we're truly going to go anywhere, anytime soon. From that perspective, it's just we're going to be independent.

Mike Veldhuis 11:58
Yeah, cool. To build that bridge, to the topic, of today, and the rest of the episodes, building that data driven company, what would be your first advice, your first step, for our audience?

Ed Macosky 12:18
The first step, is it's going to sound simple, and it's going to sound you know, obvious, but you need to understand your data. Based on some of the research we've done and seen, anywhere around 60 to 70% of data within an organisation is unknown. So in order to be data driven, you need to make sure you understand what data you have, you have to make sure that it's of high quality, and it's you know, if you're gonna do something with data, you need to make sure that it's accurate, you're not going to make decisions or, or sync data or anything like that, if it's complete garbage, you know, garbage in, garbage out.

But then the next, you know, once you understand your data, a lot of integration problems have been solved. And I see a lot of our customers and people I talked to solving the same problems over and over again, they're implementing new systems or implementing new things, but they just keep doing the same thing. So understand your data, but take a step back and think to the future, right? Like, you know, even if you're going to replac, some of your integration systems, think about new value and think about how you can change your organisation don't just think about how I keep doing the same thing I've been doing, right? Think about these new technologies. And really, start small and iterate, right, some of these new technologies that are out there can be really, really intimidating for it, folks, IT people out there today.

Mike Veldhuis 13:44
even Boomi?

Ed Macosky 13:46
even Boomi yeah

I mean, I'm not even just talking about I mean, like the new, you know, when we talk about integrated experiences and give people a new, you know, workflows and new technologies, you know, blockchain being one of them, or Oh, my goodness, I got to spend all this time learning new technology, I got to worry about, you know, helping so and so in the, in accounting with fixing their computer, right, I don't have time to hearing about all this stuff. That's what a lot of what we see in IT, people. They're strapped for resources, and they've got to move quickly. And they're reacting to business more than they're innovating for them. So it's, hey, dream a little bit, think about something cool. You can solve for your business. But start small and iterate. Don't try to take on this big challenge. Take something small and technologies like ours can help you do that very quickly. Right. So that's the advice I'd give.

Mike Veldhuis 14:33
Yeah. Start small work on the foundation. build on top of it.

Ed Macosky 14:39

Mike Veldhuis 14:40
And for our listeners, we had a little chat prior to we'd push the record button. And you shared a little little story about how you explain going to Boomi to your your friends in the past. Could you repeat that was this was quite funny.

Ed Macosky 14:58
Yeah, it's funny actually. You know. gonna expand a little more. So when I go back to my buddy Dan, we both graduated with a degree in integration, application integration, you know, integration and applications, right? And coming out of it was everybody we talked to nobody knew what integration was, what is that you're gonna do? What kind of degrees as a computer science now? Not quite, you know, we're integration specialists. And so, for years, it was always, you know, you'd be at parties and Hey, what do you do for a living? You know, I'm an in IT or whatever, cuz you start talking integration. Nobody knew what it meant or any good lose him in a second. So, nowadays, though, integration has become so pervasive, right? I mean, everything we do, it's, it's a quick, what do you do for a living? Oh, I integrate this in Well, what does that mean? Oh, you know how your data follows you around everywhere you go, people know who you are this. Yeah, that that's, that's what I do. Typically, then they want to ask me about Facebook or something like that, and how it knows when listening to a phone, and then you know, I lose them in a second. But that's kind of how.

Mike Veldhuis 16:01
So actually, the listeners of this podcast will be able to explain data driven and integration after listen to listening to the podcast series. They are at the party. And they're well, they're the heroes, right?

Ed Macosky 16:17
Yes. So it's a great party topic.

Mike Veldhuis 16:21
Well, that's, that's a great promise. It's already the end of episode one.

Ed Macosky 16:31
Oh, my goodness

Mike Veldhuis 16:31
Great story in 15 minutes, time flies, right? It's always happening this way. But the good news is we have Episode Two, three, and four. And actually, you said you were looking forward to episode number three. But episode number two, the next one is pretty cool as well. We're going to talk about integration and building this structure. Thank you Ed and thanks for listening.

Ed Macosky 17:04
Thanks, Mike.

Transcribed by https://otter.ai