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technology

Avnet ranks among top business technology innovators

Avnet, Inc., a leading global technology distributor, today announced that it ranked No. 4 on the InformationWeek Elite 100 – a list of the top business technology innovators in the U.S. Avnet was recognized for the development of an innovative cloud-based training system that serves as the foundation for Avnet Academy – the company’s education and training organization focused on technical training around top IT vendor technologies. The development of this system allowed Avnet to quickly expand its IT-related training capabilities around the world, while creating a new service that Avnet and its IT solution providers can offer to their customers.

“Avnet is constantly searching for innovative ideas to profitably grow our business while accelerating the success of our customers and partners,” said Steve Phillips, senior vice president and CIO, Avnet, Inc. “The development of Avnet’s customer training system is a prime example of how our business and IT teams have worked in partnership to develop a state-of-the-art technology system needed to start up a new global business within our company. Being recognized on the InformationWeek Elite 100 is a strong endorsement of the entrepreneurial spirit that inspires the Avnet team to constantly find new opportunities while delivering outstanding experiences for our customers and partners.”

Avnet’s business leaders, educational services experts and IT team collaborated to create the cloud-based training platform that underpins Avnet Academy. This platform includes a web portal, academy.avnet.com, which provides customers with a way to easily search for courses, find training schedules, enroll in classes, and chat with Avnet’s education experts. Additionally, students are able to hone their technical skills in a cloud-based virtual data center environment.

“As Avnet was evaluating the market opportunity for training services, we recognized that it would require a sophisticated system to achieve the scale needed to capitalize on this market opportunity,” said Matt Fox, vice president of Education Solutions, Avnet Services. “Thanks to a collaborative effort across the business, the team developed a system that delivered training services to more than 60 countries in a matter of months.”

Fox continued, “The training courses offered through Avnet Academy are helping our customers increase their technical knowledge, obtain technical certifications and provide services they can resell to their customers.”

Since its deployment, the new cloud-based training system has played a key role in expanding Avnet’s training capabilities. Avnet is now able to offer online and classroom training from more than 30 IT vendors, with a catalog of approximately 3,000 courses. Based on its new training capabilities, Avnet was selected as one of five IBM Global Training Providers, as well as recently named an HP Learning Partner.

“Gone are the days when IT could run as an entity unto itself. If IT isn’t part of product development, or marketing, or customer service, your company risks falling behind in the era of digital business. At InformationWeek, we talk about this as ‘IT Without Borders,’ as we see the best IT leaders tearing down traditional borders to help every department leverage technologies such as data analytics, cloud, and mobility. The 2015 InformationWeek Elite 100 spotlights companies at which IT is not only inseparable from every department, it’s pivotal to every customer experience,” said InformationWeek Editor Chris Murphy.

This is InformationWeek’s 27th year identifying and honoring the nation’s most innovative users of information technology. TheInformationWeek Elite 100 research tracks the technology-based investments, strategies, and results of some of the best-known organizations in the country. Unique among corporate rankings, the InformationWeek Elite 100 spotlights the power of business technology innovation.

This is the second consecutive year that Avnet has been named to the InformationWeek Elite 100, which started in 2014. Prior to that, Avnet was a long-standing honoree on the InformationWeek 500. It ranked among the top 100 most innovative companies multiple times, placing 3rd on the list in 2004 and 13th in 2005.

Additional details on the InformationWeek Elite 100 can be found online at: http://www.informationweek.com/elite100.

Download the current InformationWeek issue to read more about Avnet’s approach to innovation and the cloud-based training system that fuels Avnet Academy at: http://avnet.me/59739.

Arizona School Choice Trust

Avnet Recognized for Diversity Leadership in STEM

Beth_McMullenAvnet, Inc., a leading global technology distributor, announced today that Beth McMullen, vice president of IT for Avnet, Inc., was selected as one of STEMconnector® 100 Diverse Corporate Leaders in STEM. McMullen was honored in the STEMconnector® publication featuring top executives who have demonstrated a commitment to STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) and diversity initiatives and are making a difference with these efforts. In the publication, McMullen shares her opinions on workforce diversity, the importance of STEM education and what it takes to be a leader in these areas.

“Avnet is committed to investing in improving education and helping underserved groups obtain the skills and services they need to be successful in the technology workforce,” said Steve Phillips, senior vice president and CIO of Avnet, Inc. “Beth embodies this commitment and is a role model for anyone considering a STEM-related career. This recognition celebrates Beth’s dedication to providing the leadership and nurturing needed to truly make a positive difference in the lives of the next generation of business leaders.”

McMullen, a 20-year technology industry veteran, was promoted to her current position in July and leads IT strategy for Avnet’s logistics business globally. Throughout her career, McMullen has actively encouraged and fostered diversity in STEM-related careers. For example, she is a member of the Avnet Executive Women’s Forum leadership team. This group provides mentoring, networking opportunities and leadership development for Avnet’s female executives. McMullen is also a board member for Arizona Women’s Education and Employment (AWEE), a workforce development organization. Previously, McMullen was a member of both the Information Technology Advisory Board for the State of Arizona and the Workforce Development Committee at the Arizona Technology Council, a trade association for science and technology companies.

“STEM education has never been more important,” said McMullen. “As technology plays an increasingly critical role for every company, the knowledge and skills acquired through STEM will soon be viewed as foundational – transferrable to any industry and required by all. It has been my privilege to work closely with a wide range of people to help them obtain the education and skills needed to accelerate their professional success and achieve their career dreams.”

The STEMconnector selection process for the 100 Diverse Corporate Leaders in STEM included thorough research and outreach to over 100 CEOs for nominations. Information for each nominee was collected in three areas: the executive’s background and career; the company’s STEM position within its industry; and the nominee’s perspective on a variety of issues in the STEM space, including mentoring and diversity.

avnet - cio 100 award honoree

Avnet Selected By CIO Magazine As A CIO 100 Award Honoree

Global technology distributor Avnet, Inc. announced that it was named to the 2012 CIO 100, which is developed by IDG’s CIO magazine. The 25th annual award program recognizes organizations around the world that exemplify the highest level of operational and strategic excellence in information technology (IT). CIO selected Avnet as one of the recipients for this award based on the company’s development of a data storage management system, which significantly enhanced Avnet’s business continuity capabilities for its main North American data center.

“Like most large companies, the amount of data that Avnet needs to store is growing at a tremendous rate,” said Steve Phillips, senior vice president and CIO, Avnet, Inc. “Our IT team focused on developing a technology-based solution to meet our current data storage needs while allowing for future growth, which will only accelerate as we look to offer more ‘bring your own device’ options for employees. I commend the team on their ability to develop an innovative system that effectively addresses both our short- and long-term business needs.”

The data stored in Avnet’s data center more than quadrupled in the last two years. To manage this growth, Avnet’s IT team completely redesigned its North American data storage backup systems and processes to optimize operational performance. The new data storage management system leveraged a variety of technologies, including state-of-the-art robotics, virtual tape and de-duplication. As a result, Avnet significantly enhanced its business continuity capabilities; decreased the time to recovery in the event of a system failure; positioned itself to manage the rapid, long-term growth of business critical data; reduced the power consumption in its data center; and improved the productivity of its data center team.

“For 25 years now, the CIO 100 awards have honored the innovative use of technology to deliver genuine business value,” said Maryfran Johnson, editor-in-chief of CIO magazine & events. “Our 2012 winners are an outstanding example of the transformative power of IT to drive everything from revenue growth to competitive advantage.”

Executives from the winning companies will be recognized at the CIO 100 Symposium & Awards Ceremony, to be held Tuesday evening, August 21, 2012, at the Terranea Resort in Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif. Complete coverage of the 2012 CIO 100 awards will be online at www.cio.com on August 1, 2012, and in the August 1, 2012, issue of CIO magazine.

For more information on Avnet and the CIO 100 Awards, visit Avnet’s website at avnet.com and CIO’s website at cio.com.