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Recognizing 100 CEOs & C-level Executives
Steve Baumgartner 2023

Steve Baumgartner

Chief Information Officer (CIO)

Inpro Corporation

Location: Waukesha County, WI

Founded: 1979

Industry: Manufacturing

Learning is constant, or at least it should be if you want to be successful, says Steve Baumgartner. No matter what age or stage in your profession, there’s always room to grow and learn new skills.

‘Continue to learn your whole life,” said Baumgartner, the chief information officer for manufacturing company Inpro. “Everything you learn will help you later in life. In my case, I came out of college with a degree in computer science and quickly realized that I had to learn about all the other different business functions to grow and make a difference. Network with people with different skills so that you can learn from them.”

Baumgartner joined Inpro Corporation in 2005 as the vice president of information technology. Since then, the IT department has completed over 300 strategic projects and the company has grown by a factor of five. Over the past five years, Baumgartner’s goal has been to transform Inpro by modernizing all major software systems with cloud-based solutions. “We are seeing some great benefits from the transformation and this will set us up to be a more data-driven company,” the team at Inpro said. “Some of the benefits include software upgrades that automatically happen overnight versus taking 6–12 months in the past, much more visibility into the different parts of the business with advanced dashboards, and making us much more digitally connected by allowing us to connect with customers via text messaging and web chat.”

Baumgartner is known for planning ahead, and he is currently working on business system enhancements, robotic process automation, cybersecurity and ransomware, cloud computing, better ways to work in the new hybrid work environment and developing more data analysts in each area of the company.

“Steve has the rare ability to understand both the business and technology parts of the business and is a great communicator,” his team said. “Many IT leaders only focus on the technology part and don’t understand the business. He embraces servant leadership and always has an open-door policy.”

Baumgartner is compelled to give back and mentor others in the IT field. He helps smaller manufacturing companies determine which software systems to buy and how to navigate the many options for cloud computing and cybersecurity. He also brings in college and high school interns during the year to give them a better understanding of the different functions within IT and helps them determine which areas best fit their future plans.

Baumgartner is the co-founder of the Southeast Wisconsin CIO Leadership Group and a member of Executive Agenda, Advancing AI in Wisconsin, University of Wisconsin-Parkside Business and Technology advisory board and the University of Wisconsin E-Business Consortium. He is also a member of the board of directors for the Yacht Blast for Kids charity that gives Make-a-Wish kids and their families rides on yachts in Lake Michigan and raises money for Make-a-Wish.

He won the CIO of the Year award in 2010 from the Society for Information Management and regularly speaks at the Inpro Supplier Conference and other IT conferences.

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Did you know?

Steve loves to travel and explore the world with his wife Vivian. They have traveled to 45 countries and 38 states. Steve is also a health nut. Any given day you can find him riding his bike or Peloton, doing yoga, lifting weights, or just going on a long hike.


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