Ecosystem integration: A cloud challenge and opportunity

Mike Capone and Jan Siegmund of ADP discuss the importance of integration among ecosystem partners in creating end-customer value.

Interview conducted by Vinod Baya and Philip Garland
Photo: Mike Capone Photo: Jan Siegmund

Mike Capone is corporate vice president and CIO of Automatic Data Processing (ADP). Combining client-facing operational experience and strong technical knowledge, Capone guides both product development and information technology. ADP’s research and development (R&D) organization delivers products that support more than 500,000 clients while its IT professionals are responsible for enterprise security, infrastructure, messaging, and business applications.

Capone is a 20-year veteran of ADP and has held positions in product development, information technology, and operations. Most recently, he has been senior vice president and general manager of GlobalView, an award-winning multilingual, multicurrency human resources outsourcing solution.

Capone holds an M.B.A. in finance from Pace University and a Bachelor of Science degree in computer science from Dickinson College.

Jan Siegmund is president of Added Value Services (AVS) and chief strategy officer of ADP. He joined the company in 1999. Prior to his promotion to his current position, Siegmund served as president of Added Value Services from 2007 to 2009, which includes Tax, Retirement, Insurance, and Pre-employment Services. Siegmund has been instrumental in the development of ADP’s new growth strategy, which has resulted in ADP’s expansion into a number of important growth markets. He served as corporate vice president of Strategic Development from 2004 to 2007, and as senior vice president of Strategy and Business Development, Brokerage Services, from 2000 to 2004.

Siegmund holds a Ph.D. in economics and an M.S. in industrial engineering.

In this interview, Capone and Siegmund describe how cloud computing contributes to integration in industry ecosystems and the ability to create differentiated customer value.

PwC: Can you give us a broad overview of ADP?

MC: Sure. ADP is a $9 billion services outsourcing company, primarily focused on what we call employer services—HR, payroll, time and labor—which is the hire-to-retire suite. We also have a $1.2 billion business focused on automotive dealer services. One of our challenges is that our brand is often associated with payroll, and people forget we’re also one of the largest global HR outsourcing companies in the world and a leading provider of integrated computing solutions to auto, truck, motorcycle, marine, and recreational vehicle dealers throughout the world. We pay one in six people in the United States. People tend to think of us as “the payroll company,” but we’re well beyond that at this stage.

PwC: Jan, as a chief strategy officer, what is important to you and how do you relate to Mike?

JS: From a strategic perspective, I focus on how ADP answers a compelling client demand with a marketleading solution. Also, as we design and invest in those types of products and services, I think about how we can create a differentiated position. One of the ways we do this at ADP is through scale and through differentiated service delivery. This strategic process is supported by our technology to meet our desire to provide a cost-effective and efficient solution to solve a client problem. In my mind, Mike provides scale, and on the service side he provides a reliable service delivery for client demands.

PwC: What are some of ADP’s key business challenges?

JS: What drives us is client demand. We think of business challenges as great opportunities to serve our clients. A challenge for us is to identify those demands and have the ability to quickly go to market with our solutions. The challenges with go-to-market speed are the complexities of adjusting to our clients, our R&D time, the focus of the organization, as well as the classic management challenges of a large organization. Our clients tell us that we more than exceed their business needs, and this is how we successfully grow our business.

PwC: What role is cloud computing playing in your enterprise?

MC: A little-known fact about ADP is that we’ve been in the cloud business for a long time. We’ve been processing payroll for clients for 60 years since we’ve been in business. There was a time when that was all done on paper ledgers. For the last few decades, we’ve been doing this with everything from mainframe to client/server, and now we’ve evolved to the on-demand [cloud computing] model. You could argue that from a B2B [business-to-business] standpoint, we’re actually the largest software-as-a-service cloud-computing provider there is.