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Become A Chief Technologist

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Working As A Chief Technologist

  • Interacting With Computers
  • Getting Information
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships
  • Thinking Creatively
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
  • Deal with People

  • Mostly Sitting

  • Make Decisions

  • $62,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Chief Technologist Do

Computer and information systems managers, often called information technology (IT) managers or IT project managers, plan, coordinate, and direct computer-related activities in an organization. They help determine the information technology goals of an organization and are responsible for implementing computer systems to meet those goals.

Duties

Computer and information systems managers typically do the following:

  • Analyze their organization’s computer needs and recommend possible upgrades for top executives to consider
  • Plan and direct the installation and maintenance of computer hardware and software
  • Ensure the security of an organization’s network and electronic documents
  • Assess the costs and benefits of new projects and justify funding on projects to top executives
  • Learn about new technology and look for ways to upgrade their organization’s computer systems
  • Determine short- and long-term personnel needs for their department
  • Plan and direct the work of other IT professionals, including computer systems analysts, software developers, information security analysts, and computer support specialists
  • Negotiate with vendors to get the highest level of service for their organization’s technology

Few managers carry out all of these duties. There are various types of computer and information systems managers, and the specific duties of each are determined by the size and structure of the firm. Smaller firms may not employ every type of manager.

The following are examples of types of computer and information systems managers:

Chief information officers (CIOs) are responsible for the overall technology strategy of their organizations. They help determine the technology or information goals of an organization and then oversee implementation of technology to meet those goals.

CIOs may focus on a specific area, such as electronic data processing or information systems, but CIOs tend to focus more on long-term or big picture issues. At small organizations a CIO has more direct control over the IT department, and at larger organizations other managers under the CIO may handle the day-to-day activities of the IT department.

CIOs who do not have technical expertise and who focus solely on a company’s business aspects are included in a separate profile on top executives.

Chief technology officers (CTOs) evaluate new technology and determine how it can help their organization. When both CIOs and CTOs are present, the CTO usually has more technical expertise.

The CTO is responsible for designing and recommending the appropriate technology solutions to support the policies and directives issued by the CIO. CTOs also work with different departments to implement the organization’s technology plans.

The CTO usually reports directly to the CIO and may be responsible for overseeing the development of new technologies or other research and development activities. When a company does not have a CIO, the CTO determines the overall technology strategy for the firm and presents it to top executives.

IT directors, including management information systems (MIS) directors, are in charge of their organizations’ information technology (IT) departments, and they directly supervise other employees. IT directors help to determine the business requirements for IT systems, and they implement the policies that have been chosen by top executives. IT directors often have a direct role in hiring members of the IT department. It is their job to ensure the availability of data and network services by coordinating IT activities. IT directors also oversee the financial aspects of their department, such as budgeting.  

IT security managers oversee their organizations’ network and data security. They work with top executives to plan security policies and promote a culture of information security throughout the organization. They develop programs to keep employees aware of security threats. These managers must keep up to date on IT security measures. They also supervise investigations if there is a security violation.

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How To Become A Chief Technologist

Typically, a bachelor’s degree in computer or information science, plus related work experience, is required. Many computer and information systems managers also have a graduate degree.

Education

Computer and information systems managers normally must have a bachelor’s degree in a computer- or information science–related field. Such a degree usually takes 4 years to complete and includes courses in computer programming, software development, and mathematics. Management information systems (MIS) programs usually include business classes as well as computer-related ones.

Many organizations require their computer and information systems managers to have a graduate degree as well. A Master of Business Administration (MBA) is common and takes 2 years beyond the undergraduate level to complete. Many people pursuing an MBA take classes while working, an option that can increase the time required to complete that degree.

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

Most jobs for computer and information systems managers require several years of experience in a related information technology (IT) job. Lower level management positions may require only a few years of experience. Directors are more likely to need 5 to 10 years of related work experience. A chief technology officer (CTO), who oversees the technology plan for a large organization, may need more than 15 years of experience in the IT field before being considered for a job.

The number of years of experience required varies with the organization. Generally, smaller or newer companies do not require as much experience as larger or more established ones.

Computer systems are used throughout the economy, and IT employees may gain experience in a variety of industries. However, an applicant’s work experience should be in the same industry they are applying to work in. For example, an IT security manager should have previously worked in information security. A hospital IT director should have experience in the healthcare field.

Advancement

Most computer and information systems managers start out as lower level managers and advance to higher positions within the IT department. IT directors or project managers can advance to become CTOs. A CTO or other manager who is especially business minded can advance to become a chief information officer (CIO), the person in charge of all IT-related decisions in an organization. CIOs can advance to become top executives in an organization.

Important Qualities

Analytical skills. IT managers must be able to analyze problems and consider and select the best ways to solve them.

Business skills. IT managers must develop and implement strategic plans to reach the goals of their organizations.

Communication skills. IT managers must be able to explain their work to top executives and give clear instructions to their subordinates.

Decisionmaking skills. Some IT managers must make important decisions about how to allocate resources in order to reach their organizations’ goals.

Leadership skills. IT managers must be able to lead and motivate IT teams or departments so that workers are efficient and effective.

Organizational skills. Some IT managers must coordinate the work of several different IT departments to make the organization run efficiently.

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Chief Technologist Demographics

Gender

Male

74.9%

Female

23.0%

Unknown

2.1%
Ethnicity

White

58.8%

Hispanic or Latino

15.6%

Black or African American

12.0%

Asian

9.0%

Unknown

4.6%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

40.6%

Russian

8.7%

French

5.8%

Chinese

5.8%

Arabic

5.8%

Mandarin

4.3%

Carrier

4.3%

Portuguese

4.3%

German

4.3%

Hindi

1.4%

Dutch

1.4%

Hungarian

1.4%

Dari

1.4%

Bengali

1.4%

Assamese

1.4%

Cantonese

1.4%

Greek

1.4%

Latvian

1.4%

Coptic

1.4%

Croatian

1.4%
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Chief Technologist Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

12.1%

George Washington University

9.2%

Webster University

8.7%

Colorado Technical University

7.5%

Northeastern University

5.8%

University of Maryland - University College

5.2%

New York University

4.6%

Community College of the Air Force

4.6%

Capella University

4.6%

University of Southern California

4.0%

More Tech Institute

4.0%

University of Maryland - College Park

3.5%

George Mason University

3.5%

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University - Daytona Beach

3.5%

Purdue University

3.5%

Southern New Hampshire University

3.5%

Weber State University

3.5%

University of California - Berkeley

2.9%

Santa Fe Community College

2.9%

Arizona State University

2.9%
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Majors

Business

18.5%

Medical Technician

11.4%

Electrical Engineering

11.1%

Computer Science

10.4%

Management

6.2%

Nuclear And Industrial Radiologic Technologies

5.7%

Information Technology

4.8%

Computer Information Systems

3.5%

Health Care Administration

3.0%

Electrical Engineering Technology

2.9%

Mechanical Engineering

2.9%

Education

2.8%

Finance

2.7%

Medicine

2.4%

Nursing

2.1%

Management Information Systems

2.0%

Project Management

2.0%

Information Systems

2.0%

Chemistry

1.9%

Biology

1.7%
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Degrees

Bachelors

28.4%

Masters

24.7%

Other

23.0%

Associate

11.6%

Certificate

5.4%

Doctorate

5.2%

Diploma

1.6%
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Real Chief Technologist Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Chief Technical Architect Synopsys, Inc. San Francisco, CA Aug 07, 2016 $260,000 -
$280,000
Chief Cloud Technologist Datera, Inc. Mountain View, CA Sep 17, 2016 $250,000
Chief Technical Sales Nga Net Inc. Arlington, VA Jan 02, 2014 $250,000
Chief Technical Advisor-Process KBR, Inc. Houston, TX May 01, 2014 $220,000
Chief Technologist Red DBA Red Digital Cinema Company Lake Forest, CA Dec 06, 2010 $200,000
Chief Technologist, Healthcare R&D Nuance Communications, Inc. Seattle, WA Aug 12, 2010 $187,600
Chief Technologist, Healthcare R&D Nuance Communications, Inc. Seattle, WA Aug 09, 2010 $187,600
Chief Technologist, Healthcare R&D Nuance Communications, Inc. Burlington, MA Oct 19, 2009 $187,600
Chief Technical Professional Leader-Structural KBR, Inc. Houston, TX Jul 24, 2010 $183,744
Chief Technical Evangelist Microsoft Corporation Cambridge, MA Feb 03, 2014 $171,500
Chief Technology Correspondent Vice Media LLC New York, NY Apr 25, 2016 $170,000
Chief Technology Manager ANUE Water Technologies, Inc. Vista, CA Dec 29, 2014 $160,867
Chief Advisor-Global Technical Services Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. Houston, TX Oct 01, 2010 $150,000
Chief Technologist, Research and Development Delta Galil USA, Inc. Beaverton, OR Jul 01, 2014 $150,000 -
$160,000
Chief Technologist, Industrial Design Delta Galil USA, Inc. Beaverton, OR Sep 19, 2012 $150,000
Chief Technical Engineer Hawaiian Solar & Plumbing Inc. Kailua, HI Aug 15, 2015 $148,000
Chief of Technology and Operations Geocorr LLC Houston, TX Oct 16, 2015 $147,784
Chief Technical Engineer Hawaiian Solar & Plumbing Inc. Kailua, HI Jul 26, 2014 $141,000
Chief Technology Architect Cormant, Inc. San Luis Obispo, CA Sep 15, 2012 $140,982
Chief Technical Director Dentopia, Inc. Manassas Park, VA Apr 01, 2011 $110,882
Chief Technical Director Dentopia, Inc. Manassas, VA Jun 15, 2010 $110,882
Chief Technical Director Dentopia, Inc. Manassas, VA Nov 23, 2009 $110,882
Chief Technical Director Dentopia, Inc. Manassas, VA Jan 01, 2010 $110,027
Chief Technologist Atreca, Inc. San Carlos, CA Sep 20, 2013 $110,000 -
$150,000
Chief Blockchain Technologist Ribbit Me USA Inc. New York, NY Sep 15, 2016 $110,000 -
$135,000
Chief Technical Director Dentopia, Inc. Manassas, VA Nov 01, 2010 $106,792
Chief Technical Director Dentopia, Inc. Manassas Park, VA Nov 21, 2012 $105,894

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AVERAGE SALARY FOR A Chief Technologist

Average Yearly Salary
$62,000
View Detailed Salary Report
$26,000
Min 10%
$62,000
Median 50%
$62,000
Median 50%
$62,000
Median 50%
$62,000
Median 50%
$62,000
Median 50%
$62,000
Median 50%
$62,000
Median 50%
$148,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
Center for Diagnostic Imaging
Highest Paying City
San Francisco, CA
Highest Paying State
Alaska
Avg Experience Level
4.9 years
How much does a Chief Technologist make at top companies?
The national average salary for a Chief Technologist in the United States is $62,982 per year or $30 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $26,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $148,000.

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Top Skills for A Chief Technologist

  1. Procedures
  2. Technical Support
  3. Facility
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Performed all diagnostic and fluoroscopic procedures in outpatient satellite imaging center of Georgetown University Medical Center.
  • Provided technical support on advanced military vehicle cooling system design and development efforts.
  • Collaborated with hospital staff and local ambulance companies for transportation of all in-patients to facility.
  • Piloted orchestration and automation tools to cloud enable delivery of infrastructure in production environments.
  • Led hardware development, overall architecture design, specification development, and OEM selection/qualification for HP's DreamColor color-critical display products.

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Top 10 Best States for Chief Technologists

  1. Alaska
  2. Massachusetts
  3. District of Columbia
  4. Oregon
  5. Rhode Island
  6. Washington
  7. Connecticut
  8. Arizona
  9. Nevada
  10. New Hampshire
  • (18 jobs)
  • (151 jobs)
  • (41 jobs)
  • (52 jobs)
  • (22 jobs)
  • (126 jobs)
  • (72 jobs)
  • (86 jobs)
  • (24 jobs)
  • (51 jobs)

Top Chief Technologist Employers

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Jobs From Top Chief Technologist Employers

Chief Technologist Videos

Rick Lane Discusses His New Role as Chief Technology Officer at Trading Technologies

Chief Technology Officer Simon Cooper | Employee Profiles | J.P. Morgan

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