Information Technology

Virtual CIO May Be The Best Choice

<p>The strategic use of technology is vital for the business success, and the role of the Chief Information Officer (CIO) or Chief Technology Officer (CTO) has become more important than ever before.&nbsp;</p><p>Every business needs an experienced and knowledgeable CIO/ CTO who can align the company's technology with its business direction.&nbsp;</p><p>Hiring an in-house CIO/ CTO is a challenging proposition. For this reason, companies are increasingly hiring a Virtual CIO/ CTO (or VCXO) and reaping the benefits of cost savings and similar results to a traditional 'in-house' employee.</p><h2><span style="font-size: 14pt;">What is a Virtual Exec?</span></h2><p>In this example, a Virtual Exec is an outsourced role, e.g., a consultant or business offering a service to fulfill the role of a CIO / CTO. A virtual CIO usually works remotely and is responsible for providing technological road maps, budgeting, infrastructure management, network security, disaster recovery, consultation, troubleshooting, and new technology recommendations to support company operations and accomplish overall business objectives.</p><p>A CIO is an executive position that is common in a large organization. Hiring an in-house CIO can be challenging due to the expense and expertise, which can be out of scope for the majority of small to medium size businesses, not-for-profits, and charities. And that's where we come into play.<br />&nbsp;<br />Virtual CIO levels the playing field; we provide cost-effective means of having an expert consultant on board to ensure that the business stays on the cutting edge of technological developments without paying an executive salary.&nbsp;</p><p>The main difference between virtual CIO consulting services and other IT consultancy services is that the vCIO takes control of an organization's technology and provides strategic direction to support long-term growth.</p><h2><span style="font-size: 14pt;">Why do you need a Virtual CIO in your Business?</span></h2><p>Without the right person running your technology team, your business could be at serious risk. Technical expertise is not enough; your CIO also needs the vision and strategic perspective to keep your business on track and aligned with your strategic direction.</p><p>You need to consider these pertinent questions:</p><ul><li style="list-style-type: none;"><ul><li>Is your technology platform aligned with your future business needs?</li><li>Do you have a strong CIO who can create an IT vision to match your business goals?</li><li>Are you getting the best return on investment with your IT?</li></ul></li></ul><p style="padding-left: 40px;">&nbsp;</p><p>It is a known fact that companies that adopt cutting-edge technology have a competitive edge in the market. A Virtual CIO can keep your business at the forefront of development while controlling your costs.</p><h2><span style="font-size: 14pt;">Why a Virtual CIO may be your Best Choice?</span></h2><p>Although a CIO is critical to the success of a growing business, hiring a full-time CIO may be impractical. The cost of hiring may become a major drain on human resources. For a start, the best candidates may command large remuneration packages and other benefits.</p><p>In contrast, a Virtual CIO offers you the benefits of strategic thinking in a more affordable and convenient package. You can have effective business leadership at a manageable cost. You can hire a Virtual CIO by the hour or for a fixed number of monthly hours.</p><p>You receive the following benefits:</p><ul><li style="list-style-type: none;"><ul><li>Strategic leadership when and where you need it</li><li>The services of an IT implementation and management expert</li><li>IT expenditure that is aligned with your business needs</li><li>Improved efficiency and effectiveness</li><li>Increased return on investment</li></ul></li></ul><p>&nbsp;</p><p><span style="font-size: 10pt;"><em>This article was contributed by our expert <a href="">Matthew Ryan</a> &nbsp;</em></span></p><p>&nbsp;</p><h3><span style="font-size: 18pt;">Frequently Asked Questions Answered by Matthew Ryan</span></h3><h2><span style="font-size: 12pt;">1. What are the challenges faced by virtual CIO?</span></h2><p>&nbsp;</p><p>The same challenges that a traditional CIO faces are the same for a vCIO. &nbsp;</p><p>You could add into this the &lsquo;tyranny of distance&rsquo; from team members, but if like me, especially during the Covid 19 Pandemic and Melbourne Australia&rsquo;s Lockdowns you very much learn to work &nbsp;via MS Teams, Zoom, Google Meets and similar Video Chat tools. &nbsp; The hardest challenge I faced was motivating the team whilst being remote. It can be a challenge but one that can be overcome with regular check ins, clear and defined measures of success and communication.&nbsp;</p><p>The other big challenge for vCIO&rsquo;s is the rapid pace in which BYOD and remote working brings especially when considering Cyber Crime and Data Breaches. &nbsp; With exponentially more weakness due to BYOD and weakened security points, securing data and allowing correct access to data / systems is of paramount importance.</p><h2><span style="font-size: 12pt;">2. What tools help virtual CIO to perform their tasks efficiently?</span></h2><p>This is very much the usual remote management tools and accesses to systems, via secure means. Add to this Cloud based financial and data storage systems together with video tools and chat tools &ndash; these &nbsp;all are vitally important.&nbsp;</p><p>However, the most efficient tool in my toolbox is the phone!</p><p>Speaking with someone as compared to sending emails and messages through collaborative tools, allow a much more direct point of contact. An example here is the nuances that can be gathered via &nbsp;the tone of someone&rsquo;s voice. Where in comparison email and messaging usually does not contain &lsquo;tone&rsquo; they are words on a screen that could have a very different meaning. Tonality of voice using a phone can provide you with insights that a written message never can!</p><p>&nbsp;</p>
KR Expert - Matthew Ryan

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