Professor Stefan Thomke Will Serve as a Key Advisor, Ushering in a New Era of Accelerating Experimentation in the Enterprise
Optimizely, the world’s leader in customer experience optimization, announced that Harvard Professor Stefan Thomke is joining the company as a new member of the Optimizely Advisory Board. Thomke, the William Barclay Harding Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School and a contributor to Harvard Business Review, will advise the company on a variety of product, strategy and marketing initiatives. Thomke is a widely published author and a leading researcher on the process, economics and management of business experimentation in innovation.
Thomke has been an active member of the Harvard faculty since joining in 1995, including leading numerous MBA and executive courses on innovation management, R&D strategy, product and service development, and operations. He is also the current chair of the Executive Education Program Leading Product Innovation, which helps business leaders in revamping their innovation systems for greater competitive advantage, and is on the core faculty of HBS’s General Management Program. He has authored and co-authored many publications on how companies can make better decisions through the power of business experimentation, including “The Surprising Power of Online Experiments” and “The Discipline of Business Experimentation” in the Harvard Business Review.
“Professor Thomke is the leading authority on using experimentation for business innovation and we are thrilled to see him join Optimizely as an advisor. Stefan has spent over 20 years researching, educating business students, and training business executives on the power of experimentation systems. He is a big advocate of continuous testing of new features and user experiences to replace digital guesswork with evidence-based decision-making in business. His vision, academic work and business acumen are unparalleled and fit perfectly with our offerings and company philosophy. Stefan ‘wrote the book’ on experimentation. This relationship will create much value for our customers,” said Jay Larson, Optimizely CEO.
His appointment comes at a time when Optimizely has seen explosive demand for experimentation in the enterprise over the past year, leading to over $90 million in annual recurring revenue, global expansion and 26 of the Fortune 100 companies as customers. By empowering the world’s largest enterprises, including IBM, Microsoft and eBay, to test new ideas and push the limits of each customer experience while mitigating risk when rolling out new features, Optimizely is now the fastest growing experimentation platform in the world.
Thomke added, “I’ve been extremely impressed with Optimizely’s success at bringing the science of experimentation to the world of business. Businesses that want to compete online must build an experimentation capability and master the science of testing. Optimizely is dedicated to democratizing business experimentation and I am looking forward to advising the leadership team on how to accelerate that mission.”