May 4, 2016

Meet Our Global Director Enda Ruddy

For some time we have been introducing you to the Converge management team across the globe. In this following blog post you will meet Enda Rudy, Director EMEA Trade and FOM Globally. 

Enda Ruddy, Global Director
Q: Enda, can you tell us a little about yourself?

Sure. I am from Dublin, Ireland, and have been living in Amsterdam for the past 13 years. I originally came to Amsterdam to work after finishing my studies. To learn the language, I moved in with a Dutch roommate, and I ended up marrying his younger sister. We are expecting our second child this summer – a brother or sister to our son, who is two.

When I first moved here, I joined a soccer team where Tom Nelsey, Daniel Gentil, Oren Gadel, Ilja Lahtinen, and Brian Sneddon played. It became a community for us expats, and through that relationship I learned about Converge. Brian helped me get an interview. I was hired, and I started in sales more than 10 years ago.

My personal connection to work is very strong. I can compare it to my soccer team: it feels like a community. That’s something I really appreciate.

What is your role at Converge, and what career path led you to this position? 

A: I’m currently a global director, responsible for the EMEA region and our obsolescence business globally.

Although I’m not a subject matter expert on ICs or their obsolescence, luckily there are plenty of people at Converge who are. The focus on obsolescence is a direct result of the excellent work we have done across the company to serve the toughest customers – those with the most difficult requirements. It has given us the confidence to scale that expertise, and that’s where we are now.

Would you agree that product obsolescence is shifting the focus in the electronics market? Why?

A: So much of the electronics market is shifting fast; change is the only constant. I would describe obsolescence as something that has steadily been creeping up in terms of importance to the supply chain. Now there are many events and trade groups focused on it. It’s definitely a hot topic.

There are probably three main drivers for the rise of obsolescence: 1) technology is changing so rapidly that manufacturers miss the alerts that signal the end of life of a component; 2) many industries are being forced to support components for very long periods of time, without the funding to allow for adequate buffer stock; and 3) supplier consolidations mean many component lines will be discontinued.

Q: How does Converge fit into the obsolescence management process?

In terms of risk management, we have a very important role to fill. That’s an important mindset, because it’s not about selling components as much as it is about reducing the customer’s risk of having no availability or getting unauthentic parts.

It’s also interesting to think about how we fit in the broader Arrow picture. A Converge team recently visited a key customer – along with Arrow, Silicon Expert, and our test house partner in the region – to discuss a complete solution. This approach might become a typical go-to-market path in the future, because obsolescence is not a one-off event but rather an ongoing challenge with a lot of moving parts.

That’s why, by partnering with Arrow and Silicon Expert, we can provide a plan for every part the customer has, from data to last-time buy to non-Arrow line card and then to obsolete components.

How does your role within the company relate to obsolescence management?

I will be managing a team under the Future of Obsolescence Management (FOM) brand.

What is the role of obsolescence management in the current Converge business model?

We’re a portfolio distributor serving many types of customers in different ways. Obsolescence is just one part of that offering. What’s interesting is that it touches every department, especially quality and operations – those teams do an amazing job, including getting quality certifications and handling complex component inspections.

When you talk about sales, it’s now consultative. Purchasing is more about risk management; finance is figuring out how to work with customers that receive the goods only when a lengthy testing process is finished; and marketing is also doing excellent work with the FOM brand and

So, obsolescence is an important piece of the Converge jigsaw. We’re all involved in it, but all the other areas such as CPU sales, tech products, cost savings, etc. are just as essential.

You work primarily with the European market. Could you point out any regional specifications in the way obsolescence is managed – compared with Asia and Americas, for example?

Actually, that’s something I look forward to learning more about. In EMEA, we know that what works in France may not work in England or Israel, and vice versa. The small differences and details are critical. The nice thing is, we already have a global expert team in place.

Would you rather regard obsolescence as a challenging issue or a growing opportunity? Why?

Any company that can provide a service that really helps solve the obsolescence challenge faces a huge opportunity to grow.

Thank you Enda!

If you would like to contact Enda or learn more about our obsolescence management expertise drop us a line