Ed Rybicki, Vyaire Medical's Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer, has been recognized as one of the top information technology executives in the greater Chicago area.
The Chicago CIO of the Year® ORBIE® Awards is the premier technology executive recognition program in the region, honoring CIOs who have demonstrated excellence in technology leadership. Rybicki won in the Enterprise category, which is for companies with between $1 billon and $5 billion in revenue. He and the six other winners were selected from a field of about 150 nominated executives from the Chicago-Milwaukee area.
"While it's a CIO award, it's absolutely an IT team award," Rybicki said. "I just happen to be the guy at the top of the org chart."
Rybicki joined Vyaire Medical in 2018 and one of his first tasks was to assemble that award-winning team. "We completely reorganized the entire department," he said. "We brought in a lot of people and put them in roles where they could really drive value throughout the company."
With his team in place, Rybicki set out to implement greater simplicity, stability, and security in Vyaire Medical's global information technology systems and applications.
For example, he sponsored streamlining the company's data aggregation and analysis process and implemented a new Amazon platform. The system pulls in data from across the company — manufacturing, sales, financial, customer service, supply chain — to provide a much clearer performance picture.
"The system aggregates this data, cleans it up, and displays it in consumable dashboards," Rybicki said. In addition to giving executives 24/7 access to information, the system soon will enable predictive analysis to better inform decisions.
Another initiative, called Project Foundation, consolidated all of Vyaire Medical's servers, located in 14 data centers around the world, onto Amazon's cloud-based platform. "That has given us much better stability and much better scalability," Rybicki said.
And in this day and age, security has to be a top priority for any IT team, as the recent hack of the Colonial Pipeline network proved. Rybicki said the company saw a three-fold increase in the number of hacking attempts last year during the COVID-19 pandemic. None were successful.
"We put a lot of different technologies in place to protect the company," he said. He added these security efforts not only help prevent hacking efforts, but also block hundreds of thousands of spam emails each month.
While each of these initiatives represents a significant accomplishment unto themselves, Rybicki said he is most proud of the fact that the projects, and others, were undertaken during a time of tremendous growth and transformation for Vyaire Medical.
And he's not done yet. Among the things Rybicki is working on going forward is reducing the redundancy in the company's more than 300 business applications and software packages.
"We are still tackling complexity. That has been an overarching strategic initiative for us," he said. "You can't have a fluid, efficient organization if you have complexity."
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