How many seats are there at your C-suite table? A small business might have only a CEO. A mid-sized one may add another one or two C’s – COO? CFO? CMO? But you do not have to be enterprise-sized to benefits from a Chief Information Officer’s (CIO) knowledge. Virtual CIOs help businesses of all sizes create a technology strategy to meet business goals.
As each business is different a CIO will bring different things to each business. Typically though the CIO’s responsibilities include:
- planning your information technology or IT strategy.
- suggesting budgets for technology to support your business goals.
- keeping abreast of the latest current technology trends and how they relate to your business.
- evaluating new technologies to improve productivity, enhance operational efficiency and reduce your costs.
- building and overseeing an effective and motivated IT team (this team can be internal or external).
- developing policies relating to areas such as computer and internet usage, security, business continuity and disaster recovery.
The CIO’s role differs from a Technology Director or IT Director. The director is more of a hands-on role that is more likely to be buying IT and managing the technical solutions.
The CIO is more of a strategic consultant. He or she needs to understand the day-to-day operations, of course, but this role is more about bigger-picture thinking. As more technology is moved to the cloud and outsourced to partnerships, the CIO is generally the outward-facing lead.
A CIO takes a broad view of business technology needs. They prioritise IT needs and provide methods to improve regulatory compliance. With an eye to ROI, the CIO also builds vendor relationships and reviews the IT teams’ strengths.
How Can a vCIO Help Your Business?
People are the backbone of your business, but they all rely on technology (networks, computer systems and software applications) to get their job done. These jobs include invoicing, quotes, document collaboration, organising meetings, video conferencing etc. Business has gone digital and it is hard to find any business big or small without a computer somewhere.
Without the right technology in place, you could be wasting time and money. Many companies get sold on a particular IT solutions and stick with them out of loyalty. With so much else demanding your attention, it can be easier to rely on old legacy systems to get the job done.
But using old technology is not necessarily the best thing for your business. A virtual CIO can help identify areas of duplication and wasted resources:
- An outdated system may be slowing you down.
- Software licenses. Do you have the correct number for your business? Too many and you are paying for something you don’t need. Not enough and you may be in violation to the software manufacturers terms and conditions.
- You could be under-utilising your existing systems and hardware.
There may be better, more streamlined options that better suit your business and can save you time, money and heartache. A CIO can help guide you in the best use of technology.
As digital transformation leaders, CIOs are as critical to cultural change as chief human resources officers. – Gartner
A virtual CIO lets you keep up with the core challenges facing your business, while you leave your business technology concerns to an expert. A virtual CIO, even a part-time one, can understand your business objectives and ensure your IT infrastructure is the best fit for your business and its future directions.
Regardless of your industry, it is safe to say that technology is complicated and is s evolving rapidly so don’t miss out on opportunities to leverage the best tools for your business. Take a strategic approach to your businesses IT with the aid of a virtual CIO and don’t look back.
Make sure your IT investments will benefit your business with the help of a virtual CIO. If you are located South Australia we can help. Contact us today at 08 8326 4364 or email@example.com.