Autotask Founder Bob Godgart Shares Vision But Steps Away

The rumors were true. As MSPmentor reported last night, Autotask Founder Bob Godgart has dropped the chief visionary officer (CVO) title but will remain on Autotask's board. The move comes roughly five to six months after Mark Cattini replaced Godgart as CEO. Godgart announced his transition during the Autotask Community Live keynote. Here's the update plus seven additional highlights from this morning's keynotes.

1. Loosening Up: Former IBM and Lenovo executive Jay McBain served as master of ceremonies. Forever known for his IBM suits, McBain has spent the past two days without a tie. And he's still breathing.

2. Buzz Words: The opening keynote included some key terms like mobile, social, workflow, service intelligent, commerce, reliable, cloud, community.

3. The Journey: Godgart spoke about the 10-year journey at Autotask so far. He recapped how the company started in a mansion near Albany. The company now has 200 employees delivering five-nines uptime. The Autotask community serves 1 million SMB customers, and the Autotask customer base bills more than $1 billion annually.

4. Seven Trends in IT: Godgart's keynote focused on...

  • Mobile: Smart phone sales are overtaking PC sales. Within weeks, Autotask will launch an updated mobility app for tech and sales pros with full CRM capabilities. It will include a free read-only version.
  • Business Social: It's time to organize and aggregate information, Godgart said. The future of Autotask involves a business social user interface that looks like Facebook.
  • Service Intelligence: This is business intelligence for solutions providers. The Autotask platform will include a strong reporting engine.
  • Convergence: Godgart reinforced a familiar theme, describing how professional audio video experts, telecom agents and copier experts are moving into the IT world. And on the flip side, IT professionals will be moving into the AV and copier worlds.
  • Cloud: It's not hype anymore, Godgart asserted, because it's about the business model. He recommended that VARs and MSPs avoid the broker approach and instead pursue a white label approach to control the brand and the end customer. Godgart previewed a recurring service contract worksheet to help update all customer contracts more quickly.
  • Community: Godgart pointed to the new CompTIA MSP Partners Trustmark as a key community opportunity for VARs and MSPs. "It's the premier business credential for MSPs," said Godgart.
  • Your Business Next: Have you thought about "what your business next means?" asked Godgart. He pointed to Larry Kesslin, Paul Meyer and Jackie Freiberg as three key sources to help VARs and MSPs drive their businesses forward.
5. Bob's Recommendations: Godgart called on attendees to...
  • Have a cloud strategy
  • Have a vertical market strategy
  • Create multiple sources of recurring revenue
  • Participate in communities
  • Implement at least one idea from Autotask Community Live per week.
6. Partner: Godgart introduced CEO Mark Cattini as his "business partner."

7. Bottom Line: I think some attendees may have missed it... But here's the bottom line: The Bob Godgart leadership chapter at Autotask just ended. He just handed the baton to Cattini to drive Autotask forward. Godgart remains on Autotask's board but Cattini is calling all the shots.

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