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Become A Chief Technology Officer

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Working As A Chief Technology Officer

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

  • Mostly Sitting

  • Make Decisions

  • $150,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Chief Technology Officer 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 Technology Officer

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 Technology Officer Jobs

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Average Length of Employment
Technical Director 3.8 years
Top Employers Before
Consultant 8.1%
Director 4.7%
Manager 3.7%
Top Employers After
Consultant 11.3%
President 4.7%
Owner 3.9%
Principal 3.7%

Do you work as a Chief Technology Officer?

Chief Technology Officer Demographics

Gender

Male

87.8%

Female

9.0%

Unknown

3.2%
Ethnicity

White

57.7%

Hispanic or Latino

13.6%

Asian

13.0%

Black or African American

10.6%

Unknown

5.1%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

26.6%

French

9.8%

Chinese

9.2%

German

8.7%

Japanese

8.7%

Portuguese

6.4%

Mandarin

4.0%

Korean

4.0%

Russian

4.0%

Carrier

4.0%

Italian

2.9%

Arabic

2.9%

Hindi

2.3%

Turkish

1.7%

Cherokee

1.2%

Hungarian

1.2%

Gujarati

0.6%

Sanskrit

0.6%

Shan

0.6%

Zhuang

0.6%
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Chief Technology Officer Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

13.5%

Stanford University

7.2%

University of Southern California

5.3%

George Washington University

5.1%

Carnegie Mellon University

5.1%

University of Texas at Austin

5.1%

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

5.1%

Cornell University

5.1%

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

5.0%

Pennsylvania State University

4.5%

Brigham Young University

4.3%

University of California - Berkeley

4.2%

Northeastern University

4.2%

Harvard University

4.0%

George Mason University

3.9%

University of Colorado at Boulder

3.9%

University of Arizona

3.7%

University of Maryland - College Park

3.5%

University of California - Los Angeles

3.5%

Southern Methodist University

3.5%
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Majors

Computer Science

24.9%

Business

17.2%

Electrical Engineering

11.4%

Computer Engineering

6.0%

Information Technology

4.9%

Computer Information Systems

4.5%

Management

3.3%

Finance

2.9%

Physics

2.9%

Management Information Systems

2.7%

Mechanical Engineering

2.6%

Information Systems

2.3%

Mathematics

2.3%

Project Management

2.2%

Engineering

1.9%

Chemistry

1.8%

Marketing

1.7%

Education

1.5%

Communication

1.4%

Computer Networking

1.4%
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Degrees

Bachelors

37.7%

Masters

29.5%

Other

16.8%

Doctorate

8.9%

Associate

3.9%

Certificate

2.6%

Diploma

0.6%

License

0.0%
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Job type you want
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Temporary

Real Chief Technology Officer Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Chief Technology Officer Mars Information Services Inc. Mount Olive, NJ Mar 02, 2015 $480,000 -
$600,000
Chief Technical Officer Eligible Inc. New York, NY Sep 14, 2016 $450,000
Chief Technical Officer Eligible Inc. New York, NY Sep 09, 2016 $450,000
Chief Technology Officer Dow Jones & Company, Inc. New York, NY Dec 05, 2016 $450,000
Chief Technology Officer Landco Financial Services Corporation Burlingame, CA Mar 01, 2015 $380,000
Chief Technical Officer Digital Ventures Lab Inc. Los Altos, CA Sep 25, 2015 $375,000
Chief Technology Officer Collective, Inc. New York, NY Jan 09, 2016 $350,000
Chief Technology Officer Collective Media, Inc. New York, NY Dec 08, 2016 $350,000
Chief Technology Officer of Provider Solutions CIOX Health, LLC Alpharetta, GA Jan 07, 2016 $340,000
Chief Technology Officer China Merchants Bank Co., Ltd. New York, NY Sep 15, 2016 $324,450
Chief Technology Officer China Merchants Bank Co., Ltd. New York, NY Sep 14, 2015 $315,000
Chief Technology Officer Interush, Inc. Irvine, CA Mar 16, 2015 $300,000
Chief Technology Officer Keepsafe Software Inc. San Francisco, CA Jan 29, 2016 $188,822
Chief Technology Officer (CTO) Talkdesk, Inc. San Francisco, CA Sep 21, 2015 $188,822 -
$200,000
Chief Technology Officer Amped Inc., D.B.A. Applauze San Francisco, CA Feb 24, 2016 $188,822 -
$208,822
Chief Technology Officer Simpson Holdings, Inc. Houston, TX Jan 20, 2015 $187,830
Chief Technical Officer Gameforyou, Inc. Santa Clara, CA Sep 21, 2015 $185,162
Chief Technology Officer Newbasis West, LLC Riverside, CA Oct 07, 2015 $185,000
Chief Technical Officer Avure Technologies Incorporated Middletown, OH Aug 31, 2016 $185,000
Chief Technology Officer Atlantis Computing, Inc. Mountain View, CA Sep 17, 2016 $185,000 -
$200,000
CTO Supstat Inc. New York, NY Jul 27, 2016 $144,233
CTO Oldslip Logos LLC New York, NY Nov 15, 2015 $144,000
Chief Technical Officer Duo International Holding Corp Fort Lauderdale, FL Sep 05, 2015 $144,000
Chief Technology Officer Bivacor, Inc. Cerritos, CA Feb 11, 2016 $143,042 -
$177,715
Chief Technology Officer Driblet Labs, LLC Cambridge, MA Aug 16, 2015 $142,563 -
$150,000
Chief Technology Officer Keepsafe Software, Inc. San Francisco, CA Feb 06, 2015 $141,000 -
$164,000
Chief Technology Officer Digital Gaming Corporation USA Deerfield Beach, FL Aug 24, 2016 $141,000
Chief Technology Officer Instaclustr, Inc. San Mateo, CA Jan 02, 2015 $140,005

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Top Skills for A Chief Technology Officer

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  1. Infrastructure
  2. Web
  3. Technology Strategy
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Reviewed and validated application and database infrastructure to make applications easy to maintain and adapt for customer requirements.
  • Established effective online marketing and advertising program to drive web traffic and optimized social media channels.
  • Determined enterprise information technology strategy.
  • Led the development of data center consolidation reference architecture directing workload to appropriate resources based on performance and cost classification.
  • Lead and provide technology and process solutions for application and platform infrastructures architect and forensic data recovery.

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Top Chief Technology Officer Employers

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Jobs From Top Chief Technology Officer Employers

Chief Technology Officer Videos

Shyam Rajan, Chief Technology Officer - India, GE Healthcare

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

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