All posts by Bill McNee

Bill McNee

About Bill McNee

Mr. McNee is the President and CEO of Saugatuck Technology, a subscription research and advisory firm he founded in 2000. In addition to leading the company, Mr. McNee helps spearhead the firm's research into evolving business models as a result of the shift to the Cloud, and helps lead the firm's CIO-targeted Cloud migration / leadership practice. Prior to Saugatuck, Mr. McNee spent eleven years with Gartner, most recently as Group Vice President and Research Fellow, responsible for guiding the firm's overall research strategy. A recognized expert in business software, Mr. McNee spent five years leading Gartner's Business / IT Management practice as its Director of Research, focusing on CIO governance issues, and another two as head of Product Strategy, where he conceptualized and launched several new research products. Prior to these roles, he was a lead analyst focusing on enterprise business applications, database tools and asset management strategies. Prior to Gartner, Mr. McNee held strategic planning, financial management and marketing positions at CBS, HBO, Comshare and the Institute for Social Research. Mr. McNee is a University of Michigan alumnus, and has completed graduate work in economics at New York University.

Saugatuck Premium Research Update – Volume 1

Many of our regular Lens360 and weekly Research Alert readers are aware of Saugatuck’s CRS subscription research service; excerpts from our premium research appear regularly in our Lens360 blog, and slices or summations of premium Saugatuck research reports also appear in both media. All of these have garnered terrific interest, including comments and questions that help to guide our ongoing research, and we thank you for that.

Research clients, CRS subscribers, blog readers, and other interested parties have suggested that regular updates and reviews of recently-published work would be helpful in determining how and where Saugatuck can best assist them, as well as providing a window into the breadth and depth of our research library and activity.

Beginning here, we will provide a regular summation of some of the top Saugatuck research pieces published in the past three months or so, and offer a peek ahead at what’s in store for the next few months as well.

  • Active Saugatuck premium CRS clients can access any of the listed research articles by signing in to the website, or by clicking on any of the links below and signing in.
  • While only a small portion of our premium research is for sale a la carte, non-CRS clients can purchase select individual selections by clicking on the links and following instructions for purchase. For a full listing of select premium research available for sale a la carte, click here.
  • Anyone with any questions about our CRS offering or specific research topics, programs, or pieces can call us at +1.203.454.3900, or by emailing Chris MacGregor at


5 Questions Every CISO Should Ask About Digital Business

Lead Author: Jim Hurley, Published: 30July2014, Doc Number: 1412STR

CRS Clients: Click here to access. Non-CRS Clients: Click here to purchase.

The transformative power of Digital Business may be as simple as using web applications to automate online purchases, or as disruptive as information Continue reading

Call for Nominations: Saugatuck’s Beacon Awards for Business Innovation

The rapid global expansion and integration of Cloud for business advantage has helped to catalyze a global shift toward Digital Business – a core theme for this year’s Cloud Business Summit, and the focus of the 2014 Beacon Awards for business excellence.

“Digital Business” is defined by Saugatuck as follows:

A digital business integrates digital technologies, assets, and capabilities with business development, management, and operations, to create and adapt offerings and experiences that generate revenue and competitive advantage.

- Saugatuck Technology Inc., 2014

2013 Beacon Award Winners

2013 Beacon Award Winners – Click Here for Details

To make this happen, significant and ongoing IT and business investment and innovation need to occur, along with significant changes in culture, organization, operations and management outside of IT, including procurement, training, security, ecosystems, and provider management. Simply adding digital technologies to existing operations does not create a digital business.

Beginning in 2014, the Beacon Awards will recognize user enterprises that have not only made measurable progress toward becoming Digital Businesses, but which also have helped to shape the future of their company, their markets, and Continue reading

2014 Cloud Business Summit – The Journey to Digital Business

I am pleased to announce some of the details surrounding our fourth annual Cloud Business Summit, which will be held November 12, 2014 at The Yale Club in New York City.

Our conference theme this year is “Innovation, Opportunity, Risk and Reward,” with the event focusing on the journey that large enterprise CIOs, CTOs, and senior marketing and finance executives are on as they optimize their Cloud investments, and begin to remake their companies as Digital Businesses. For a short overview of the event, go to:

We’ve moved the Summit to a new venue this year. The Yale Club of New York has a spectacular Grand Ballroom that we will be using, along with its elegant Rooftop Dining Room. Both will provide an optimal setting for the peer-level learning and interaction that are hallmarks of our events, fostering an intimate, C-level setting.

Our program / agenda is coming together nicely, with our keynotes and panels offering unique first-person experiences, insights, and best practices Continue reading

SAP SAPPHIRE NOW 2014 – 3 Takeaways

What is Happening?

Earlier this week, Saugatuck attended the SAP Sapphire NOW conference in Orlando, Florida. We value coming to the conference each year as it, like several others that we attend, provides great signposts as to the current state of business computing. This year more than 20,000 attended the event live, with thousands more accessing the keynotes remotely. In this Research Alert, we emphasize three key takeaway threads from the event: “Simplicity”, “HANA Front and Center”, and “Ariba: Key to SAP’s Future.”

Why is it Happening?

With many of the key technological foundations having already been laid, SAP is at an important juncture to begin to significantly monetize on the vision it has built over the past few years. We see the company pursuing that in the following ways: Continue reading

On The Road at SIIA Maximize – Three Key Megatrends

What is Happening?

Earlier this week, Saugatuck participated in the new SIIA Maximize conference in San Francisco, as both a speaker and panel moderator. Formerly called “All About the Cloud” – the new name change appropriately reflects the maturing of the Cloud market, as providers and buyers alike have clearly moved well beyond the early adopter phase. Given this, the SIIA has appropriately refocused the event for its members on how best to win in the evolving landscape that is emerging. This Research Alert provides a brief overview of the event, and highlights new research that Saugatuck shared at the conference.

Why is it Happening?

As noted, Saugatuck participated both as a panel moderator and as a featured speaker at SIIA Maximize. On Wednesday May 21st, Bill McNee, Saugatuck’s founder and CEO was joined by Carolee Gearhart, VP International Sales & Channels at Adaptive Insights, Richard Dym, CMO of Gagein, and Fritz Veltink, Managing Director of SaaS Energy in a high-energy breakout panel entitled “Unlimited Growth: Beyond Borders and Verticals.” The panel discussed a number of topics, but the core focus was around 1) when is the right time to expand, and 2) what are the key best practices in doing so. While the panel concluded that the decision to put the pedal to the metal was situational, a clear understanding of market opportunity and metrics, combined with maintaining laser-like focus are often keys to success.

On Thursday May 22nd, Saugatuck’s McNee delivered a morning featured presentation entitled “Beyond the Cloud Experiment: Three Key ISV Opportunities.” In keeping with the theme that the Cloud market is evolving, McNee shared some new research that clearly shows that buyers are now moving well into the early mainstream phase of adoption. As Figure 1 highlights, more than 60 percent of enterprises we surveyed will have at least half of their infrastructure and apps in a Cloud by 2018, up from less than 30 percent in 2014.

Figure 1: Cloud Adoption – Going Mainstream

Cloud Adoption Going Mainstream

This clearly reinforces our view that the “Cloud Experiment” is over now – and that a new “Master Architecture” (or architectures) has emerged (that includes Cloud, Mobile, Social, and Analytics). While migrating workloads is part of the story here, the bigger part continues to be the rapid growth

Continue reading

Big Data and Advanced Analytics Panel (CBS2013)

On September 25, 2013, Saugatuck held its 3rd annual Cloud Business Summit at the Westin Times Square in New York City.  As with prior Summits, our event brought together more than 100 large-enterprise CIOs, CTOs and senior business and finance leaders – to explore how they can and are realizing value from the Cloud. This year’s conference theme was “Rethinking Business Innovation.

One of the hottest topics in Cloud business today is Big Data and advanced analytics. While many current attempts and instances are still trials and PoCs, as enterprises work to figure out what these “power tools” can really do – significant progress and payback is being demonstrated in analyzing purchase decisions and in the targeting of customers, and in leveraging sensor data to help drive operating efficiencies throughout industry and the supply chain.

In this featured panel, Saugatuck Technology SVP and Head of Research Bruce Guptill is joined by Will Klancko, Sr. Risk Program Manager at GE Capital, Hodan Hassan, Managing Director at Unicef Continue reading

Dev Ops – Fireside Chat with Graham Hill, SVP Cloud Infrastructure at Citi (CBS2013)

On September 25, 2013, Saugatuck held its 3rd annual Cloud Business Summit at the Westin Times Square in New York City.  As with prior Summits, our event brought together more than 100 large-enterprise CIOs, CTOs and senior business and finance leaders – to explore how they can and are realizing value from the Cloud. This year’s conference theme was “Rethinking Business Innovation.

In this featured Fireside Chat, Graham Hill, SVP Cloud Infrastructure at Citi, and Charlie Burns, VP at Saugatuck Technology, discuss key issues related to the evolving field of Dev Ops. The deployment of Cloud infrastructure is no doubt helping to create a more agile application development environment while dramatically reducing the IT support staff required for development operations. This one-on-one Fireside Chat explores how the new economics of Cloud are fueling business innovation by dramatically reducing the cost of trying new approaches, new Continue reading

SAPs Acquisition of Ariba Visibly on Track

Last night and today, Saugatuck has participated in a series of analyst briefings and one-on-one sessions (with customers and Ariba execs), as well as attending the keynote presentations at Ariba LIVE 2014. What is clear from all of the experiences is that the acquisition of Ariba by SAP appears to be paying huge dividends across many dimensions of the business.

While the 80% + bookings growth that Ariba achieved last year is a tangible signpost demonstrating solid demand for its Cloud-based procurement / sourcing / collaborative commerce solutions (and the amazing power of cross selling across the SAP client base) – in many ways, Saugatuck sees the bigger impact of this acquisition yet to come. SAP clearly views Ariba strategically, and is investing with a longer-term view – especially in regards to power of “the network.”

The range of investments is truly impressive, including functional and UX enhancements, new mobile capabilities, integration with key SAP ERP solutions, globalization and localization capabilities, and the re-platforming / leveraging of HANA across the fully array of Ariba solution Continue reading

The End of the Cloud Experiment – What’s Next for Business?

What is Happening?

The past ten years have seen a dramatic evolution of computing styles and architectures. More than five years ago, we began to see strong and accelerating demand for Cloud / SaaS business solutions, social tools and Cloud infrastructures. Over the past two to three years, the impact of mobility, advanced analytics and sensor technologies have emerged as key focal points for businesses of all sizes. Today, all of these technologies are now soundly proven to deliver solid business value, at the same time that they become rooted in our emerging core “master architecture.”

But now, what’s next? Where is business computing heading? This Research Alert explores three key and emergent research themes that Saugatuck will be focusing on (among others) in the coming months. Continue reading

Save the Date! Saugatuck Announces 4th Annual Cloud Business Summit

Saugatuck is pleased to announced the date of our 2014 Cloud Business Summit – a 1-day executive event to be held on November 12, 2014 at The Yale Club of New York City. As with prior Summits, our newest event will bring together the most Cloud-experienced senior business and marketing strategists and technology leaders to explore how enterprises can, and are, realizing the most from the Cloud in all of its forms. This year, our conference theme is “Innovation, Opportunity, Risk and Reward“.

Every day, the Cloud delivers process improvement and cost savings payback to businesses of all sizes – as we shift beyond point solutions to core systems of record, mission critical workloads and new ways of engaging with customers and partners. What is becoming increasingly clear is that the revolution we are in is not just about the innovative and transformative uses of Cloud, mobile, social, advanced analytics and sensor technologies – and how they can be used for business advantage.

Instead, we are in the middle of a fundamental re-examination of what it means to succeed in the emerging digital business era. Businesses are realizing that success demands critical new thinking around sustainable business models and what it takes to develop a “winning” business strategy, what is core to brand value, how and what digitally-centric products and services to create and bring to market, how best to exploit the new forms of customer and partner engagement, and what Continue reading