Penton Media announced this week it has rounded out its digital leadership team with three recent hires. Joining chief data officer Richard Stanton, who was hired last November into the newly created position, are vice president of engineering John Paul, vice president of product management Amruta Gadre, director of design Sebastian Broways and director of data science and predictive analytics Roger Craig.
Stanton says the new team signals a major change from Penton’s previous digital strategy. "It’s dramatically different for the organization," he says. "We’re looking at this as product and technology first from the perspective of how we build things."
Like many other publishers with a focus on the technology that drives their content production, distribution and audience marketing, Penton is taking a product-focused approach to development. "We’re taking all the aspects of what we think will lead to successful products from both content and technology and broken it down—product management leads to great design and then moves to how we are going to ingest and organize our data. The other key role is engineering—using the right technology that’s not only current but forward-leaning," says Stanton.
While product development, and the underlying technology, will be top of mind, data, says Stanton, will be at the core. "We are going to be bringing a semantic feeling to our work going forward—the organization of data and our ability to make certain inferences from the data. That’s a big course of action we plan to take."
Lastly, the engineering and data teams will be tasked with consolidating the tech platforms that serve the multiple verticals Penton’s media products serve. Stanton says infrastructure will be rebuilt to similarly service all products across verticals, eschewing the previous use-case approach to tech development.
"We may use a similar data store environment for multiple products, but each one could support independent data stores. But in essence, the technology will be similar across the stack," he says.