Drawing The Line Between The Roles Of A Cto And An Em

A simple distinction is that the CIO typically looks inward, aiming to improve processes within the company, while the CTO looks outward, using technology to improve or innovate products that serve the customers. The CTO also creates policies and procedures that leverage technology to enhance products and services delivered to external customers. We can now choose our starting point from a set of sixteen different possibilities. The correct managerial style as a CTO is not a picture, but a moving target that has to follow the evolution of the company and its business goals inside a fast-changing world.

cto roles

I was still not a manager but merely a developer who started to informally take on more and more responsibilities because there was a gap someone had to fill. The CIO is responsible for managing and ensuring ongoing operations, mission critical systems, and overall security, from help desks and enterprise systems to service delivery and program management. The explicit impact of a CIO can be determined with a variety of metrics, though improving the company’s bottom line is a must. You will work directly under the CEO and will act as both a technology and business expert, making decisions that will impact the current and future operations of the company. Since CTOs need to possess knowledge of every department role, experience in several different technology positions is valuable. When an organization has both a CIO and CTO, the CTO usually has more technical know-how and expertise, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics .

One thing I find very interesting is that the CTO is being viewed as a successor to the CIO, whereas typically it was the VP of clinical applications who was on that path. They https://globalcloudteam.com/ still are in many cases, but in a lot of instances now, it’s the CTO. If you are the first person to be in a new role, be prepared for a lot of ambiguity and uncertainty.

It is the task of the executive who deals with strategy, i.e., the CTO or CIO, to go from evaluating costs and risks to measuring created value. Mapping IT to business is still a job far removed from being agile and resilient to constant change. The ongoing digital transformation has improved the quality of the software being developed, of course, but it also offers the opportunity to establish better processes to produce corporate value. The Visionary-Enabler is one of the most exciting and adrenaline-junkie CTOs. In control of every single tech step since the beginning, this types fosters skill levels, processes, and investments, to the exclusive advantage of the business. The Challenger uses creative tension and veto power to improve R&D performance by injecting additional scrutiny, external perspectives, and rigour into activities and processes owned by the business units.

Top 5 CFO interview questions with detailed tips for both hiring managers and candidates. Top 5 CIO interview questions with detailed tips for both hiring managers and candidates. Top 5 CTO interview questions with detailed tips for both hiring managers and candidates. Making executive decisions on behalf of the company’s technological requirements.

Even when I was a lead developer, I was deciding on architecture, but not on people’s salaries. That made me look like a peer, not a manager to the people on the team. But, when my role was formalized, I became responsible for decisions where I could not ask my team members for help.

With businesses taking on more new technologies, the role of chief technology officer has become almost as important as CEO. Some CTOs even enjoy a sort of celebrity level of fame, like AWSexecutive Werner Vogels. CTOs can bring innovative technologies to the forefront that fit within the strategic goals of the organization.

The CTO role has emerged as a key player in the enterprise C-suite, especially with digital transformation being such a high strategic priority for so many organizations. The Enabler chief technical officer is similar to the Influencer in their low degree of control over R&D and technology inside the company. This tye of CTO focuses on making the R&D function faster and more effective by improving processes, cross-pollinating ideas, and improving skills levels, or by increasing investment in a few company-critical projects. We have been doing a lot of recruiting for chief technology officer positions. But I wouldn’t say it’s a revamping of the role; I would say the role has evolved and the position has changed.

Explore It Careers, Roles, Certifications, Salaries & More!

Plato (platohq.com) is the world’s biggest mentorship platform for engineering managers & product managers. We’ve curated a community of mentors who are the tech industry’s best engineering & product leaders from companies like Facebook, Lyft, Slack, Airbnb, Gusto, and more. The CIO can be seen as the ultimate cheerleader for all in-house technology and digital processes. IT traditionally has a nebulous reputation with other business units – so it is the role of the CIO to improve the image and reputation of IT services within the company. Short for chief information officer, the overall role of the CIO is ensuring business processes run efficiently, with a goal of promoting the productivity of individual employees and business units as a whole.

  • The correct managerial style as a CTO is not a picture, but a moving target that has to follow the evolution of the company and its business goals inside a fast-changing world.
  • Now it’s a very visible role; someone who can sit down with senior leaders at the highest levels.
  • On the other hand, working by external recruiters would fall, following our agreement, under the responsibilities of the CTO, while in fact, I was in charge of it.
  • As organizations focus more on digital health, the CTO is getting more involved in the strategy and development of those products.
  • Because the role is dynamic and responsibilities can vary depending on the type and size of the organization, industry, and other factors, there isn’t really such thing as typical day for a CTO.

First, a general look at the role of a Chief Technical Officer working in the ICT industry, then a more general perspective from the broader tech industry, before we finally evaluate the two roles within a 4×4 matrix. CTO is considered a stable job role that is inherent to the proper functioning of a company and, even if a CTO decides to step down for whatever reason, the compensation can be extremely high. One recent example is the last year’sdeparture of Uber CTO Thuan Pham, who was paid an additional $5.49 million ($3.96 million) following his decision to leave the company.

As a senior executive focused on an organization’s technical requirements and challenges, the CTO’s role can be similar to that of the CIO. They will develop procedures and policies and exploit technology to improve products and services that centre on external customers. They will talk to customers, both internally and externally, try to understand their problems from the technology standpoint and help them understand the technology an organisation uses. They must ensure the proper balance between business and technology strategies, taking in information and distilling it into the important trends that show where a company needs to go next. Don’t call it a comeback; chief technology officers have been here for years. The chief technology officer is the senior executive who focuses on the technological requirements, opportunities, and challenges within an organization.

Types Of Cto

In speaking with my colleagues at WittKieffer, we’re all pretty much in agreement that the need for a VP-level CTO has definitely risen in profile. It’s not just about infrastructure operations, although infrastructure is important. It was difficult at moments to understand the rationale behind my scope.

You will have to make a lot of ad hoc decisions, and too often, you will end up in a no man’s land. These postings are my own and do not necessarily represent BMC’s position, strategies, or opinion.

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Naturally, in larger organizations, other managers would be my “new” peers, but I was pretty much on my own as the first to be promoted. However, I was lucky enough to develop some other relationships from within and outside the organization that were enormously valuable. Having relationships with peers from different departments also helped; while their experience was different than mine, it was also indeed useful. Suddenly one is not part of the group anymore, and that can indeed be a lonely place. The chief technology officer focuses on creating and using technology in order to help the business grow – typically improving offerings that the company’s customers purchase with the help of new technologies.

cto roles

This versatility provides opportunities for CTOs to advance to the highest levels of organizations. An Owner’s paradigm can be implemented in start-ups or small enterprises, where it is most common to market only one product or service. Owners and enablers are generally more internally-focused, while challengers and influencers have more capacity to focus on the external environment and interfaces. However, after a decade into the role, a CTO can expect a significant raise. Those who had anywhere between ten and 19 years of experience had an average total compensation of £102,779, while those who had spent over two decades in the role were paid an average total compensation of £121,913.

Everything was clear and reasonable in theory, but there were too many exceptions that would end at both sides of the fence in practice. This e-book give you a basic understanding of IT jobs, including tips for how to apply and interview for IT positions and how to stay sharp once you’ve embarked on your career. CTOs want to keep developing technologies, bringing to the table new ones to use, are constantly experimenting with new tech stacks, possibly spending money on new projects that don’t always pan out. Unfortunately, when judged by the bottom-line monitoring CIO, these activities can appear reckless, costly, and as wastes of time. CIOs mediate between internal IT teams and other departments, and CTOs develop relationships outside the company.

Responsibilities Of A Cio

Chrissy Kidd is a writer and editor who makes sense of theories and new developments in technology. Formerly the managing editor of BMC Blogs, you can reach her on LinkedIn or at chrissykidd.com. The CIO will make rules to try and reign in the CTO, and make their behaviors more efficient and align with the business goals. Their strategies come at a conflict of interests, but the tension between the two is what helps increase innovation in the organization.

A C-level executive is not always given sufficient time to understand a situation. While this is often the case in early-stage start-ups, the CTO is also like the new manager of a football team in normal companies, needing to win matches from the very beginning of the new season. Typically, CTOs tend to come from inside the industry; many have works in consulting.

cto roles

They can also act as magnets for talent, pick the best candidates and foster them to become leaders in the future. They can create an environment where developers can come together to achieve ambitious goals. Kate Semizhon, Engineering Manager at Square, shares her experience finding a role as an engineering manager without any recent experience. Where people will draw boundaries between different roles is a matter of convenience.

Out Of The Shadows: The Ctos Evolution From Technologist To Leader

But, at the end of the day, the two’s strategies are housed under the same corporate roof, and they will have to work together to see their strategies through to a successful finish. Collaboration is also an essential skill, as a CTO will need to partner with in-house engineers and external vendors to achieve something that hasn’t been done before. Let’s take a look at the difference between CIO and CTO roles as well as whether your company should employ one or both.

Cio And Cto: Do You Need Both?

Additionally, the CTO will support the efforts of an organisation’s marketing teams and work with them to develop strategies that create communities around products. The CTO will also work with the VP of engineering or product heads to make sure any work is aligned with the technology vision. They must champion these teams’ opinions and feedback to the rest of the company.

When a company doesn’t have a CIO, the CTO determines the overall technology strategy and presents it to top executives, according to the BLS. Because the role is dynamic and responsibilities can vary depending on the type and size of the organization, industry, and cto roles other factors, there isn’t really such thing as typical day for a CTO. The McKinsey report offers intriguing insights into what drives different CTO types. “The styles of influencer and owner are typically the most challenging to execute”, due to specific biases.

Maintaining a consumer-focused outlook and aiding in the delivery of IT projects to market. Message your employees on Slack with customized security and compliance recommendations for their Linux, Mac, and Windows devices. Bob Violino is a freelance writer who covers a variety of technology and business topics. CTOs on average earn a salary of $163,309 per year, according to PayScale, a firm that provides a compensation platform to calculate compensation rates.

Gregory Witek, Engineering Manager at EclecticIQ, speaks of his experience of being the first EM in an early phase startup and his attempts to draw the line between the responsibilities of a CTO and an EM. Doors will open here and there for you as your reputation is acknowledged—those are opportunities for you to reap what you sow. So, at every stage of your career, when a door opens to accept greater responsibilities, take it. They always look at what is instead of what could be, and their risk-averse tendencies are draining on the innovation process, and constantly keep the development of the organization lagging behind what its true potential could be.

Cto Vs Cio

Total compensation for these positions ranges from $89,000 to $294,000 per year. CTOs need at least a bachelor’s degree in computer science, information systems, or a related field, according to Indeed. In some cases, a degree in business administration or management is valuable. Many CTOs have at least a master’s degree, and some even have PhDs in IT or business administration fields. The evaluation cycle must be agile, shortening the time required but also involving more areas of the company.