The value of a chief information officer

The Value of a Chief Information Officer The Chief Information Officer is also known by the Information Technology Director. According to the US Department of Labor “ Chief information officers are responsible for the overall technological direction of their organizations” ( bls. gov). Among their various functions include hiring Information Technology professionals and workers as well as other support personnel that can ably assist in accomplishing” information technology related projects” (bls. gov). Being the highest senior executive accountable for IT and computer systems, they also have administrative functions such as creation and implementation of policies and procedures. Likewise, the CIO directly handles the IT employees and provides an adequate performance review based on Key performance Indicators of the department. As for their specialization which is IT, they spearhead the planning for maximizing IT as a leverage against competitors. In the case of government agencies, CIO is “ highly responsible for strategic planning for all information and technology management functions—thus, the term information resources management (IRM) strategic planning” (44 U. S. C. 3506(b) (2)). It can be said then that a CIO is crucial senior administrative post in an organization because information technology plays a great role in giving leverage to business. Typically, a CIO has a strong background in some fields of IT such as information systems, computer engineering or computer science. Being a senior post, it is a must for a CIO to possess a post-graduate degree in the field of management such as MBA. Frequently, the CIO would directly report to the CEO and collaborate with other senior officials of an organization. Most of the time technical implementation is done by junior officers since the CIO is developing long-term plans for the enterprise. Indeed, the CIO brings added value to an organization in many ways aside from holding senior administrative functions. Former CIO of NHS UK revealed in his article that CIOs have many concerns aside from developing IT for an enterprise. A CIO can be burdened even by issues such as cost-cutting, leadership, security issues, satisfying customers, managing change and even organizational politics especially or government agencies (McGinn, 2007). This just demonstrates exactly how challenging are the functions of a CIO. His accountability goes beyond IT but provide support to the whole enterprise as well. According to an article titled Current and Future Challenges : The Chief Information Officer Mastering the power of information , CIOs do not only manage IT resources and operations, they can also be “ an enabler of business change”(leadershipexpertise. com). Primarily, they enable such changes by improving existing business processes and finding ways to achieve leverage against competitors. This would mean seeking solutions that would please customers and employees as well. Indeed, the CIO functions are not just focused on IT but other areas of the organization too such as finance, marketing and over-all operations. Briefly, the CIO’s function places him as a very crucial officer who can add value to the whole organization. References: McGinn, J. (2007, July 6). Granger: The final word. CIO, p. 6. Retrieved February 2, 2011, from Granger: The final word N. A. Leadership. expertise. com. Current and Future Challenges: The Chief Information Officer Mastering the power of information. Retrieved Feb 2 2011 from http://www. leadershipexpertise. com/ resources/ CIO%20Current%20 and%20Future%20 Challenges. pdf. 44 U. S. C. 3506 (b) (2). Quoted from FEDERAL CHIEF INFORMATION OFFICERS Responsibilities, Reporting Relationships, Tenure, and Challenges.). July 2004. United States Government Accountability Office. Retrieved Feb 2 2011 from http://www. gao. gov/ new. items/ d04823. pdf.