June 1, 2016 – Executive search firm ON Partners has placed Angela Yochem as senior vice president of information technology and chief information officer (CIO) of Rent-A-Center, Inc. Partner Andy Hickman led the search assignment.
Ms. Yochem is charged with developing and executing a transformative technology strategy that will support Rent-A-Center’s growth. Her responsibilities include developing Rent-A-Center’s IT talent; expanding recently developed technologies; enhancing the company’s web, online and mobile solutions; and providing technology leadership for new opportunities facing the organization.
She comes to Rent-A-Center with more than 10 years of senior executive leadership experience and has a track record of driving competitive advantage and innovation through technology. Ms. Yochem recently served as CIO at BDP International, a privately-held, multi-billion dollar company that provides global transportation and logistics solutions. At BDP, she executed a swift transformation of the company’s technology division to enhance customer value and drive expansion of its digital products line. Additionally, she served on the management committee of the company, as well as three subsidiary boards.
Earlier in her career, Ms. Yochem held leadership positions with AstraZeneca, Dell, Bank of America and SunTrust and has served as an independent director on the board of the Federal Home Loan Bank of Pittsburgh.
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“We are excited to have Angela join our management team,” said CFO Guy Constant. “Angela’s executive experience driving innovation across a variety of complex businesses will be critical as we execute on our ongoing transformation, continue to streamline our operations and expand how we better serve our customers.”
A rent-to-own industry leader, Plano, TX-based, Rent-A-Center is provides its customers the opportunity to obtain ownership of consumer electronics, appliances, computers, furniture & accessories, and smartphones under flexible rental purchase agreements. The company owns and operates approximately 2,790 stores in the U.S., Mexico, Canada and Puerto Rico.
With a primary focus on technology, energy / clean tech and the life science sectors, ON Partners recruits C-suite, board directors and senior executive talent for public and private companies, as well as venture capital and private equity firms. The firm currently has 16 consultants working from offices in Atlanta, Baltimore / Washington, D.C., Boston, Cleveland, Dallas, Minneapolis, Portland, and Silicon Valley.
CIO hiring and recruiting information technology teams for companies has been on the rise for the better part of the last three to five years, say recruiters specializing in the field. Nearly a quarter (22 percent) of U.S. CIOs plan to expand their IT teams, according to a recent 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.
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.”
Contributed by Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor, Hunt Scanlon Media