A broad description of a chief information officer (or CIO) is the manage the information technology requirements of an organization. As technology changes and adapts to the modern needs of a business, so does the role of a CIO and may no longer include operational responsibilities. Some of their duties will include:
- Improve the value of the business with technology
- Create strategic plans to meet the goals of a business
- Make sure that the IT systems enable the business to meet its goals
- Supervise the development of customer service platforms
- Oversee the IT team
- Negotiate with vendors and approve new IT infrastructure
- Information risk management
- Set IT policies, approaches, and standards
- Create IT budgets
While new technologies like big data, AI, and the Internet of Things open the door for amazing business opportunities, they also create problems. It is essential that this technology is successfully implemented so that companies are aware of what is influencing consumer products. For this reason, CIOs are more focused on service analysis, security, and market reach.
CIO Average Salaries and Job Outlook
The average annual salary for CIOs will depend on many factors such as the location, qualifications and experience, and the employer.
Required Education and Training for CIOs
As with the salaries, the level of education and training will vary from employer to employer. In general, candidates will need a combination of IT skills and managerial experience.
Most CIOs will hold a degree in either computer science, software engineering, or information systems while some employers will look for candidates with a Master’s in Business Administration. Certifications in computer programming, math, and business will go a long way.
If you are looking for a CIO position, the experience is crucial. 5 years of IT management is preferred but it is also necessary that you have a solid knowledge of the business. One of the most recent trends is to hire candidates who come from business departments instead of the following tradition and hiring from IT departments.
Required Skills for CIO Jobs
It will be an advantage if you can have all of the following skills or at least the majority of them.
Strategic planning- this is necessary in order to create and establish plans that will allow a business to reach its goals.
Leadership abilities- important for managing teams, often large ones
People skills- the It plans that are put into place will extend to all departments and so a CIO must be able to effectively communicate with different people
Receptive to change- CIOs must welcome the frequent changes that come with technology and help others adapt to new solutions.
The Working Environment and Schedule for a CIO
CIOs can work in many different industries and they will all require the CIO to embrace the fast-changing technological environment. It is normal that the job brings high levels of pressure because of the responsibilities that come with assisting businesses reach their objectives.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics stated that approximately 33% of CIOs work for longer than the usual 40-hour week.
How to Improve Your Chances of Employment
Once you have gained the appropriate qualifications and experience, it is wise to network with business leaders to gain insight into what makes them successful. Then you will have a strong idea of what you should include in your targeted cover letter and resume.
Similar Jobs to CIOs
There are more opportunities if you are willing to look slightly further afield. You might want to consider a career as a web developer or software developer.