November 29, 2016 – Executive search firm Battalia Winston has placed Anthony Lombardi as chief information officer of The Andersons, Inc. Terry Gallagher completed the assignment. The successful candidate was identified in 14 days, and the search was completed in 96 days.
Mr. Lombardi most recently was vice president, global business services and chief information officer at Armstrong World Industries, a global leader in the design and manufacture of floors and ceilings with net sales of $2.5 billion, operating 32 plants in nine countries and 7,600 employees worldwide. In that role, he led a multi-sourced global information technology and finance organization of 400 staff located in the U.S., Europe, China, India, and Australia and a $67 million budget.
Prior to advancing to becoming CIO of Armstrong World in 2010, Mr. Lombardi served as director of enterprise applications for four years and director of global IT infrastructure for six years. Before being recruited to join Armstrong World, Mr. Lombardi advanced into IT management positions of increasing responsibilities for 17 years.
The Andersons is a $4.5 billion diversified company rooted in agriculture and conducts business across North America in the grain, ethanol, plant nutrient and rail sectors.
Battalia Winston has decades of experience helping organizations conduct searches for key leadership and board openings. The firm’s client base includes healthcare organizations, higher education institutions, international development organizations, social service organizations, cultural and arts entities, and foundations.
Mr. Gallagher joined Battalia Winston in 1991 and was promoted to EVP in 1994 and president in 1997. His primary focus has been in recruiting CEOs, presidents, division general managers, CFOs, CIOs, board directors and all C-suite executive positions for Fortune 500 as well as middle market companies and private equity firms as well as partners, practice leaders and rainmakers for consulting firms. He has consulted for a broad range of industries, including industrial products; insurance / financial services; professional services; technology; business services; consumer goods; and healthcare.
CIOs In Demand
CIO hiring and recruiting information technology teams are both on the rise. Nearly a quarter (22 percent) of U.S. CIOs plan to expand their IT teams, according to a Robert Half Technology ‘IT Hiring Forecast Trend Report.’ It represents a three point rise from the beginning of last year and an eight percentage point jump from one year ago.
“Organizations are getting the green light on more technology projects, prompting them to make strategic hires,” said John Reed, senior executive director of Robert Half Technology. “However, technology leaders continue to struggle to find highly skilled talent in a market with low unemployment. They seek IT professionals with specialized skills, especially in the areas of cloud computing, data analytics, mobile strategies and cybersecurity.”
The importance of having a good CIO onboard has also risen. More CIOs report directly to the CEO (34 percent) than at any time in the past decade, according to the 2016 Harvey Nash/KPMG CIO Survey. The findings highlight how CIO priorities continue to shift, revealing the CEO now focuses on IT projects that make money (almost two thirds, 63 percent), compared to those that save money (37 percent).
“The CIO is enjoying unprecedented influence, and the role is being stretched in many directions,” said Albert Ellis, Harvey Nash Group CEO. “From grappling with an increasing cyber security threat, to working with the board on innovation and digital transformation, CIOs in 2016 are dealing with a more varied range of challenges than ever before, many of which are far, far away from traditional IT. Adaptability, influencing skills and an ability to keep a clear head in uncertain times are becoming increasingly important business skills for today’s CIO.”
Search Firms Help to Fill Demand
In recent months, a number of organizations have turned to executive search firms to find CIOs. Here’s a few of the top assignments tracked by Hunt Scanlon Media:
- KPMG Executive Search & Selection has been retained by the University of Adelaide to lead its search for a chief information officer. The incoming CIO, according to the organization, will take the university to the next level of excellence in its IT environment and service provision.
- DES Recruitment has been selected by Eurasia Group to lead its CIO search. John Hodge, managing partner at DES Recruitment, is heading the assignment. “Our client is looking for an innovator and someone to help them create a digital transformation,” he said.
- Opus Partners recruited Keith W. McIntosh as CIO at the University of Richmond. Craig Smith, a founding partner of Opus Partners, led the search. Mr. McIntosh has more than 30 years of experience in information technology services within higher education and the military.
- ON Partners placed Angela Yochem as senior vice president of information technology and CIO of Rent-A-Center, Inc. Partner Andy Hickman led the search assignment. Ms. Yochem recently served as CIO at BDP International, a privately-held, multi-billion dollar company that provides global transportation and logistics solutions.
Contributed by Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor, Hunt Scanlon Media