Canadian Technology Innovators are Honoured by The Quest For Canada's Smartest IT and Info-Tech Research Group

LONDON, ON, Nov. 21, 2011 /CNW/ - The second annual  Quest for Canada's Smartest IT campaign in association with Info-Tech Research Group announced the winners of the 2011 Smartest and Greenest  IT departments in Canada at a gala event held at the Capital Event Theatre in Toronto on November 17th.

Info-Tech Research Group listened to many impressive IT success stories from across the nation throughout the year and selected an elite few to hold the titles of Canada's Smartest IT, Canada's Greenest IT and Canada's WOW Award winners for 2011.

And the winners are….

Canada's Smartest IT - Tool Wall - British Columbia (www.tool-wall.com)

Tool Wall is a potential game changer for the manufacturing industry and is hard at work to keep Canadian manufacturing jobs at home earning them the honour of the 2011 Canada's Smartest IT Award.

This small BC company of 12 people came up with a product that virtually eliminates the gap between designing and machining for manufacturing companies to solve their own business problem. Their technology allows manufacturing companies to take smaller orders and still produce at a competitive price. In fact Tool Wall increased the profit margin from 12% to 35% for a Canadian manufacturer in 2011.  With Tool Wall, buyers no longer have to hold large quantities of inventory and experience a great increase in efficiency by reducing the need for niche skills.

Canada's Greenest IT - Lipton Chartered Accountants - Ontario (www.liptonllp.com)

For an IT department that doesn't consider itself revolutionary, The Quest for Canada's Smartest IT believes quite the opposite and awarded Lipton the 2011 Canada's Greenest IT Award.

The team at Lipton transformed their entire law firm into a paperless organization which is no small feat in an industry that is paper-heavy and resistant to change. Their Network in a Box proves that it is possible for accountants, lawyers, and consultants to greatly reduce the use of paper across the board, from client visits to internal filing. The IT department at Lipton has equipped their accountants to meet the expectations of a younger client base, while reducing their environmental impact, and greatly reducing courier and administration costs.

The "Wow Award" - Pembina Trails School Division - Manitoba (www.pembinatrails.ca)

As a large school division with a small budget, Pembina Trails School Division's visionary thinking has allowed them to give back to their surrounding communities by providing free Wi-Fi, a much needed service in many lower income neighbourhoods.   It is this generous act of giving back paired with their innovative, long term vision for the future that earned Pembina Trails School Division the Canada's Smartest IT 2011 Wow Award.

Early this decade, while most other IT departments were cutting costs, the IT visionaries at Pembina were spending millions of dollars making a strategic investment in a Dark Fibre network.  As a result, in 2011, Pembina does not face any infrastructure restrictions and is able to focus on providing new services to their end users and the community. This long term vision means they are ahead of the curve and can be proactive in where their money is spent.

A recent virtualization and consolidation project resulted in a one-time savings of nearly $350,000 and annual saving of $50,000 while providing improved reliability, security and scalability.

Pembina is clearly living by their motto, "A dollar less spent by IT is a dollar more available for teacher's and classrooms."

Applications from all across Canada were reviewed to select qualified finalists for the Smartest IT, Greenest IT and Wow Award winners. The criteria for selection was based on stories shared in each nomination about how they sustained innovation, provided solutions allowing for their organization to operate smarter or greener, and the factors that set their use of IT apart from the competition.  A select group was chosen as finalists and an independent panel met to select The Smartest IT, Greenest IT and Wow Award winners.

Other Finalists for the awards included:

Smartest IT Finalists:

Teacher's Credit Union - Ontario
Meno Ya Win Health Centre - Ontario
Atum - Ontario

Greenest IT Finalists:

Empower - British Columbia
School District No. 63 - British Columbia
University of Regina - Saskatchewan
Pembina Trails School Division - Manitoba

About the Quest for Canada's Smartest IT

The Quest for Canada's Smartest IT is an annual campaign designed to engage, inform and advise Canadian mid-market organizations on becoming smarter in the deployment and use of technology to change the way we live.  For more on the campaign visit http://www.smartest-it.ca.

About Info-Tech Research Group

With a paid membership of over 8,000 organizations worldwide, Info-Tech Research Group (www.infotech.com) is the global leader in providing tactical, practical Information Technology research and analysis. Info-Tech Research Group has a thirteen-year history of delivering quality research and is North America's fastest growing full-service IT analyst firm.

SOURCE Info-Tech Research Group

For further information:

Media contact

Rachel Flewelling at rflewelling@infotech.com or 1-888-670-8889 ext. 3061

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Info-Tech Research Group

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