January 10, 2017 – Executive search firm Caldwell Partners International has recruited Ann Sung Ruckstuhl as chief marketing officer (CMO) of publicly traded technology company Unisys Corporation. Jim Bethmann, managing partner and co-leader of the firm’s TMT & IT services and information security practices, led the search.
Ms. Ruckstuhl will lead all of Unisys’ marketing and communications functions. She will take a leading role in executing the company’s new “Securing Your Tomorrow” awareness campaign, and in expanding awareness and demand for both its industry vertical solutions and its Unisys Stealth micro-segmentation solutions.
She brings more than two decades of marketing and product management leadership experience launching brand awareness campaigns and building successful software and service businesses at start-ups and Fortune 500 companies. Most recently, Ms. Ruckstuhl was CMO at SOASTA, a digital performance management platform used by Fortune 1000 companies. Prior to that, she was CMO at LiveOps, head of marketing at Symantec’s NortonLive Services and vice president of marketing at Sybase, where she led its transformation from a database company to a global leader in enterprise mobility. Earlier in her career, she held key positions at eBay and HP.
A Unique Combination
“Ann has led some of the most disruptive innovations in software as a service, cloud, mobile, cybersecurity, big data analytics, e-commerce, networking, servers and embedded systems,” said Peter Altabef, president and chief executive officer of Unisys. “Her domain expertise, energy and command of marketing best practices will elevate Unisys marketing to the next level. She is a great addition to our senior leadership team.”
“Ann is an incredible marketing talent with a unique blend of both large company and early stage company experience while working in hardware, systems, security and broad enterprise solution companies,” said Mr. Bethmann. “This unique combination made her the perfect candidate to assist in the growth and turnaround for a $3 billion legacy technology company that has moved to the forefront of the enterprise solutions market in the data, cloud and security sectors.”
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“I am inspired by Unisys’ vision, strategy and its many talented people,” said Ms. Ruckstuhl. “Unisys has solved some of the most complex IT challenges for the world’s largest companies and government organizations, and has equally compelling solutions for small and medium-sized companies. I look forward to working with this great team to further amplify the Unisys security-first value proposition and its industry-leading solutions to accelerate growth.”
Unisys is a global information technology company that specializes in providing industry-focused solutions integrated with leading-edge security to clients in the government, financial services and commercial markets. Its offerings include security solutions, advanced data analytics, cloud and infrastructure services, application services and application and server software.
Recruiting Chief Marketing Officers
As business becomes more global and complex, and power shifts from producers of goods and services to consumers, a CMOs responsibility of planning and coordinating an organization’s marketing activities has become much more challenging, according to recruiters specializing in the function.
Current business landscape demands have increased the contribution from chief marketing officers, the latest research report from Forrester and Heidrick & Struggles reveals. The survey found CMOs are building strong relationships with heads of product and research & development to prepare organizations for digital disruption.
Caldwell Partners’ Jim Bethmann sat down with Hunt Scanlon Media yesterday to take us inside the hunt for CMO’s. In the following condensed interview, Mr. Bethmann shares his views on recruiting chief marketing officers, including where to find the talent, what type of training top leaders in the field experience, and some of the other top searches Caldwell has completed in the sector.
Jim, within technology companies like Unisys, where do you find the best marketing talent?
In the technology world, regionally speaking, we typically find the best marketing talent in the San Francisco Bay Area, New York, Boston and D.C. This obviously has a direct correlation to the high number of emerging and established global technology companies in these markets. With regard to technology company marketing talent you can find it most prevalent in emerging markets in companies and agencies that support these companies.
What is the best type of training for making top CMOs?
We often find the best CMOs will have a background similar to Ann’s and have experience in both large and early / growth stage companies. This smaller company experience typically provides them with the hands-on knowledge across the entire marketing stack and the large company experience gives the necessary poise and presence that is critical to being an effective CMO and deal with sophisticated investors and board members.
What traits or characteristics make up ideal CMOs?
Experience across the entire marketing stack with emphasis on the “Big M” (branding and positioning), product marketing, analytics, lead generation and digital; with analytics and digital being extremely important to today’s CMO.
Which industries do the best marketers generally come from, Jim?
Industry experience is only a concern as it relates to your individual corporate market and strategy objectives. Good marketing executives can be found in any industry.
Can you tell us some other chief marketing officer searches that you’ve completed?
In the last couple years we have completed numerous CMO searches but most notably, in addition to Unisys, in technology at Mitel Networks, a leader in Unified Communications and a company with the fastest growing cloud solutions adoption in the industry, and Tenable Network Security, one of the fastest growing private security software companies in the industry supported by Accel Partners and Insight Capital.
Contributed by Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor, Hunt Scanlon Media