Why Do You Need a vCIO?

Netrix IT works with our clients as a Virtual Chief Information Officer. When we first start with a company they don’t always understand what that brings in terms of value because they’ve not had one, or the one they had wasn’t providing good value.  I am Netrix IT’s Director of Technology and Security and for many of our clients I sit in the CIO chair.

What sets a CIO apart from a standard IT person?

When a client calls Netrix IT for help, they can get a wide variety of technical support. Whether helping on the desktop side or the server side, they view us as a technology support team. The CIO is part of that, but has very different responsibilities. First, the CIO is a business driven role that is responsible for understanding and helping craft the vision of the company and integrating technology into that vision.

The CIO is responsible for looking into the future, seeing what technology is coming, and then understanding how that can change the company. They are responsible for recognizing what technologies present a threat to the company, as well as identifying what technologies present opportunities that are transformative for the business.

By doing this, the CIO bridges the natural gaps that exist between the business and the IT team. When the IT team is fixing problems, they are dealing with the symptoms. The CIO is to identify the trends which can reveal causes behind broader problems.

What separates a CTO from a CIO?

Some companies have either a CTO or a CIO and some don’t even know the difference between the two. In principal, the distinction between the two is that a CIO is responsible for organizational problems and how technology impacts them while the CTO is responsible for solving technology problems, especially the ones that are client or vendor facing.

Usually the CTO reports to the CIO, and acts as the top engineer within a company. The CIO is responsible for communicating the business needs of the company and the two of them work together to align technology within the organization.

Why would I want a virtual CIO?

First, many companies cannot afford a CIO. The position is in high demand in a lot of businesses and small companies generally cannot afford to have a CIO who spends that much time doing business thinking, vision crafting and planning when it comes to their technology needs.

Second, having a virtual, outsourced CIO allows the vCIO to take emotions out of decision making. They are not encumbered by the office politics or legacy decisions that need to be overcome. Also, a vCIO works with other businesses to help them solve their problems.

The largest impact having a vCIO working with your business is to craft the technology roadmap to put your company on a path where IT can drive your business.

How does the vCIO fit into the Netrix IT service offering?

At Netrix IT, we work to augment every one of our client offerings with a vCIO. Someone has to have an overall vision for each of our clients, and we take responsibility for that. This might not seem obvious when it comes to day-to-day interactions with our team. However, the vCIO role drives the growth of your technology team, coordinates training around existing and anticipated technology needs and manages the overall technology spend for your company.

Responsibility for your account has several different points of influence, but the one who brings the vision for your company when it comes to technology is the vCIO. For most of the clients at Netrix IT, that person is me and I appreciate the privilege of sitting in that chair for you.

If you’d like to talk with us about the vCIO role, please email us at marketing@netrixit.com and a member of our team will coordinate some time for us to talk.