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As Executive Strategy Director at AT&T, Dan Schmidt works directly with customers, building executive relationships and communicating the value AT&T can provide through its growth services, ultimately helping them execute long-term and strategic initiatives. He also works directly with AT&T product organizations, serving as the liaison between AT&T services and customer needs.
A relative outsider at AT&T, Dan started with the company in 2010, after more than 25 years’ experience as an IT executive in a variety of industries/verticals, managing geographically diverse teams, data centers and providing application services and architectural/technical strategies for multi/transnational customers in a B2B and B2C “as a service” model. This outsider perspective helps him articulate a more accurate and current view of AT&T customer and market challenges.
He participates on a number of AT&T councils to help drive innovation, bringing market-sensing data and feedback to help mature products and services. As customer IT departments feel more pressure from their CFO organizations, Dan also helps internal teams understand the financial impacts of their products and the transformational challenges AT&T customers are facing.
Before he came to AT&T, Dan spent 11 years at Ceridian, where he was recruited to rejuvenate, mature and standardize the managed services product line. He turned around a poorly running process operation, improving revenue and cost containment and assembled and led an infrastructure architecture team to standardize and rationalize reporting, continuity and standards. This led to a reduction in infrastructure cost of close to 20 percent.
Supporting six different business units at Ceridian - including each unit’s CIO or chief business development officer - he also created measurement, criteria, metrics, and automation to help manage the health and wellbeing of those systems. The automated environment he conceptualized and designed established a self-service entity across four data centers, the business units and the back-office systems. These dashboards are still in production and are also being used by subcontractors to measure their performance and SLA’s to this day.
Among his more unusual credentials for an IT executive, Dan also holds a law degree, which has proven to be of great benefit when he’s negotiating contracts and working with vendor merger and acquisition activities.
In his free time, Dan enjoys classic cars and is currently in the process of rebuilding a 1967 Chevelle. He also likes to travel and recently spent time skiing in Zermatt, Switzerland, a place he favors for the different cultural experience it affords in comparison to skiing in the States.
Dan’s bachelor degree is from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and his juris doctorate is from Atlanta Law School. He is a Six Sigma Champion, an ITIL Management Training graduate and holds the ITIL Foundations Certification. He’s a member of the American Management Association, the Zachman Institute, the Information Management Forum, and Hotel Technology Next Generation. He also works with analysts from Gartner and Forrester.