Who should the Chief Information Officer report to!

26 Nov

In this blog I hope to clarify who the CIO should have to report to. Or if indeed the CIO should be allowed to make his own decisions for the company in which he is employed by.

One of the main issues is if the board consider I.T. to be a priority for the company. If this is not the case then the CEO and the board will let the CIO be held responsible for all technological decisions for the firm. In this case a select few executives on the board is who the CIO will have to report  to. This is in the case of a company who would not deem technology important to the future of their company. However in the age in which we live in, the majority of companies know that in order to move forward in the 21st century information technology will play a vital role.

The CEO is one example of who the CIO could be answerable to. However this can have its problems. For instance if the CEO is running a large multinational company they probably would not have time to properly look over what technical improvements the CIO is making for the company. A CIO’s work needs to be really accurate, whether they are leading projects, making technological purchases for the company or updating old I.T. systems for the firm, this work needs to be done perfectly. If the CIO is trying to continuously rendezvous with a busy CEO this work will surely be affected in the long run. This could be due to the fact that the CEO will probably not have time to evaluate to detailed work the CIO has provided and hopes to move forward with. In this case it is probably best is the CIO is answerable to one to the executives on the board for the company.

However most CEO’s have got to where they are today by playing ball with all of the managerial positions. This would include the CIO. Many CEO are shrewd business men and like to be involved in all aspects of the company’s development. Therefore if they are used to working with the CIO before they got the position of CEO they probably will continue to work with the CIO. The CIO and the CEO would have developed a personal and working relationship.

The best and worst person a CIO must report to is a CEO. I believe that if the CEO has a genuine interest in technology then the CIO will move the company forward immensely.  However if the CEO does not show interest in technology it is likely the CIO will have to report to other members of the board on decision making. I believe that if a CIO is left to tend to his own work and not have to worry about someone looking over their shoulder and knows that he/she has the backing of the CEO to do so then the company the CIO works for will strive.




5 Responses to “Who should the Chief Information Officer report to!”

  1. 04ac November 26, 2012 at 6:07 pm #

    I think your your blog highlights just how important it is to hire the right person in the role of the CIO. If a company chooses someone who hasn’t got the necessary leadership and innovation skills needed it could end up being disastrous for an organisation. You make a very important point of how there should be a good relationship between the CEO and CIO so a company can continue to achieve their goals.

    • aherntim1 November 27, 2012 at 4:55 pm #

      Thanks 04ac

  2. oconnormatty7 November 27, 2012 at 9:28 am #

    Very interesting aherntim1! I’d tend to agree with the concept of the CEO and CIO being interdependent regarding technology in a business! Keep up the good work

  3. ericlynch1 November 27, 2012 at 11:21 am #

    First off I totally agree that the relationship between the CIO and CEO is very important but you mentioned how the CEO’s are shrewd business men.
    I also feel that the CIO needs to have as much as a business mind as well so he/she knows that the revisions or improvements being made to the technology provide business value to the organisation.

    • aherntim1 November 27, 2012 at 4:57 pm #

      I agree with you Eric. It is very important for the CIO to have a busness mind with regards I.T. moving foward.

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