Born in 1983, IFS develops and delivers enterprise software for clients across the globe who manufacture and distribute goods, maintain assets, and manage service-focused operations. Marne Martin, President of IFS Service Management Business Unit, leads the charge enabling digital transformation, the delivery of business value, and great Moments of Service.
Before joining IFS, Marne Martin was already quite accomplished in this sector. While serving as the CEO, she led the executive leadership team of a publicly traded FSM software company. Innovation led, Marne was responsible for the transformation of, their go-to-market strategy, shifting focus to SaaS, which reaped rewards year on year. This is part of a successful track record that also includes time spent leading and taking public a defense and telecom consulting firm. Marne’s initiatives took the company from dominance in the Middle East out into the US, Europe, and the Asia Pacific. Earlier, in her career, Marne was part of the team acquiring licenses and launching the first GSM cell phone companies in the Americas as well as privatizing a life science company and doing a variety of interesting technology startups.
Marne feels blessed to have a fascinating and interesting life that continues to bring opportunities to do progressive and cutting edge things. In the past, she has written about her childhood and career moving from an background growing up on cattle ranches to launching an international career on her own merits, which makes her very proud to be an example of how women can build a successful career. She takes pride in being an example and still being accessible to other women and young people who are growing their careers. In addition to being open to engaging with young people generally, she prioritizes meeting new hires and advancing young professional and leadership programs so that individuals see first hand that Marne Martin cares about their success. While Marne Martin can’t manufacture enough time to be everywhere for everyone, she wants to make sure that she is not the type of person or executive that is no longer in touch with those on the ground and the front-line and inspires others to be the same.
Tackling Primary Challenges
IFS serves some of the most well-recognized companies on the planet. The clientele covers industries like telco, manufacturing, utilities, and others with asset, customer and people centric businesses. It is exciting to be partnering with businesses that might be digitizing for the first time, others that are leveraging more advanced capabilities to launch new business models, and of course some global companies that have components of both `o3depending on which country or business unit.
Marne Martin believes in this competitive market, finding and retaining talent, and keeping sufficient focus on customer business value realization has to be always top of mind with continued outreach and innovation needed. In general, how IFS in the software industry can be better buyer coach for companies seeking more value from their technology investments, greater change management skills, or advice how to launch new business models from their technology investments stays on Marne’s mind every interaction with a prospect or customer. This is needed not only in the buying cycles across repeat and occasional technology buyers, as well as business value realization, which is still not where it could be. A surprisingly high number of technology buyers may know that they need a type of technology, but they are not sure how success is defined in measurable key performance indicators. And of course to deliver on this mission, IFS needs talent that is capable and also coachable with career paths that meld well with the Company’s vision and strategy alongside customers to be the kind of technology partner they can rely on.
People Behind the Success
Hard work, quick thinking, good people skills, and resiliency are all personal traits that Marne has benefitted from and cultivated. There are too many people to name who advised Marne, pushed her to be better, or even exposed her to the opportunities, which have helped Marne to grow and learn. The learning journey never stops, and Marne Martin continues to be courageous and entrepreneurial even as she has now passed her 25+ year work anniversary. Staying creative and energetic now with decades of experience is certainly an advantage for her.
An Avid Reader Creating a Balanced Industry
Marne Martin suggests embracing and cultivating the openness to ideas and different views, and encouraging those who bring solutions to problems is key to businesses not stagnating. She often says, “while we can’t eliminate all bias we can make sure we support ideas and those who find solutions to problems and promote or encourage those people regardless of their backgrounds, ethnicities, gender or beliefs.”
She is an avid reader, and there are so many amazing books she has read, classics, business books, and leisure books. Marne Martin often likes to go back, and read classics, and timely books about history, War and Peace is certainly top of mind in these current times, but more related to work, a book that doesn’t show up typically on a list of best business books, but one she thinks everyone should read is Start with Why by Simon Sinek. Marne loves to be inspired and inspire people, and that is why this book resonated with her as while inspirational people always have the power to cultivate change, change becomes more ingrained and easier to drive adoption when people understand the why. And pragmatically, if one can’t articulate the why of an action or initiative, regardless of inspiration, it is a red flag.
Preparing for a Better Future
IFS is on a great path of growth focusing on how it meets the evolving needs in the software industry and its focus verticals to deliver value for customers and value for their customers. Personally, Marne Martin is proud of all that she has accomplished. However, every day, she thinks of how to drive greater and faster scaleability in go to market across the 60 or so countries IFS focus on, improving how she alongside her team serve customers, solve industry and digital transformation problems, all which keeps her motivated and the work exciting.
During her long career, Marne Martin has received many awards and accolades. Now she is very excited as IFS has earned a billion USD in revenue, her role in developing and growing software unicorns, how she can’t wait to see the future, and how both IFS and its customers evolve in this world of outcomes and experiences.