Arrow Fast Five: Q&A with Joanna Welch
Arrow’s Joanna Welch is as passionate about technology as she is about helping people and her community. Get to know more about Joanna and find out how she’s making a difference in this quick Q&A.
1. Tell us about your journey in tech and how you landed at Arrow.
My entry into the IT industry was by chance; the role was advertised but industry was not mentioned. The job was with a retail software company and I worked there for 12 years starting out in admin before working across sales support, delivery, channel and key account management. I then moved onto a sensor-based parking tech company, where I gained valuable insights into the world of IoT and Big Data. I joined Arrow in 2019 – this was my first role in tech distribution and I still love it.
2. What are some of the trends you’re seeing in New Zealand from a sales perspective?
Our world has changed in recent times. What’s come to light is that businesses are fully embracing cloud-native solutions and, with consumer confidence, they’re arming up with decent cybersecurity protection for their devices and applications. They’re also looking at how they can improve performance to mitigate downtime regardless of where you’re working.
3. If you could invite two tech leaders or innovators to dinner, who would you choose and why?
Andrew Assad; he has amazing energy and is extremely optimistic and passionate about our business, our vendors and our partners. With Arrow being my first foray into distribution, tapping into his brain would be worth my while!
Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos; both revolutionised retail and have been at the forefront of ecommerce and payment processing. Both have literally changed the landscape to which we consume, while doing innovative and exciting ventures for humankind with space exploration and bleeding-edge technology.
4. What do you do when you’re not working?
Up until recently most of my spare time had been spent on a community initiative. I worked alongside a team of Pasifika tech leaders to produce a pilot mentoring program, PASI Pasifika Advocates for Students in Technology. The program connects young Pasifika students with a Pasifika mentor in tech, who shares their insights of the industry and the opportunities available to them.
The goal of the PASI Mentoring Program is to help Pasifika students and their families improve their understanding of technology, gain skills and build confidence to explore and pursue a career in tech.
I also love entertaining at home with my friends and family, which generally leads to eating and drinking too much.
5. Finally, tell us what you’d do if you weren’t working in IT.
If I could sing, I would be a singer, but realistically I love art, fashion and the communities I’m linked to. If I made up a job title it would be Creative Community Director. I also love party planning – who doesn’t enjoy a good party with games?
At Arrow, we are passionate about translating complex technology into tangible solutions that guide innovation forward.