Do I Need a Fractional or Virtual CIO?
If you know that hiring a chief information officer (CIO) is the key to your business’s managed service needs, but you’re not sure what type of CIO best fits your business objectives, keep reading.
This guide will help you identify:
- The different types of CIO – fractional and virtual CIO
- What each CIO type does and how it impacts your business
- The benefits each type has on your business
- CIO as a Service and why it’s the right option for your businessH2 Heading Topic Four
What Your Company Gains From an External CIO
Having a full-time CIO can become a financial and logistic strain for many organizations, especially if they’re a small or medium-sized business. A traditional CIO’s expertise comes with salary and benefit requirements that can become costly, especially when their consulting service isn’t always necessary.
While the role of chief information officer is incredibly important for visualizing a company’s information technology strategy, their expertise can quickly reach its limits when disaster occurs. Because they’ve been involved with a company for so long, for example, their vision may become short-sighted in a way that wouldn’t be the case for an outsourced CIO.
As a cost-effective solution for a company with limited resources, hiring an externally sourced CIO that can offer an organization critical strategic planning is a positive step forward in meeting business goals. Before locating a technical advisory service, a responsible business leader should be familiar with the types of CIO.
The Two Types of CIO
If you’ve been introduced to the world of managed services, you may have heard the term virtual CIO (vCIO) used quite often. Virtual CIOs are mentioned so frequently in the IT world that one might think they’re the only kind of externally sourced CIO, but this isn’t necessarily the case. In addition to virtual CIOs, businesses can seek services from fractional CIOs.
What Is a Fractional CIO?
Fractional CIOs are providers that bring part-time or on-demand CIO services to companies that lack a CIO. People who serve in this role provide the same standard duties as any chief information officer, but with a few differences from other technical advisory services. Fractional CIOs operate outside the traditional functions that managed service providers (MSPs) set up, where they earn commission on products and services they sell by the original equipment manufacturer.
Instead, fractional CIOs eliminate bias by being solely paid by the clients that hire them. In other words, when your business services a fractional CIO, you can expect objective advice that looks at your business’s unique needs and provides the relevant technology to further assist your business processes.
How You Benefit From Fractional CIO
If you hire a fractional CIO, your organization can expect to reap the benefits of:
- Having an expert who has likely served in a CIO role previously or has the equivalent years of strategic management experience
- Effective vendor management, which includes all the vendors in your technology portfolio
- A well-designed IT organization—whether that’s an in-house team or a hybrid model
- Built-in mentoring for your junior-level staff members
- A level of transparency with vendors your other CIO services would not provide
- Comfort in making sound technical decisions with the support of an objective and unbiased source
A virtual chief information officer (vCIO) is a type of externally hired CIO that takes on a short-term, contracted role. Much like a regular CIO, virtual CIOs assume the duties of overseeing every facet of an organization’s information technology processes to better support the company’s long-term goals.
The expertise that these professionals offer is very similar to a traditional CIO, like assisting with planning the IT budget, making authoritative decisions, and reworking business practices, but in a much more efficient and cost-effective manner. They can also advise companies on the type of hardware, software, and services the client should invest in.
A key difference between a vCIO and other types of outsourced CIOs is that virtual CIOs tend to take a broader approach to IT services, while others focus on technology service delivery.
Additionally, virtual CIOs operate remotely, while other technology advisory services like fractional CIOs tend to provide IT leadership in person.
The Benefits of Virtual CIO
Having the oversight of a vCIO can reward an organization in multiple ways:
- A virtual CIO guarantees better control of your company’s IT infrastructure.
- Small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) can afford greater access to useful expertise.
- Your business can avoid the hassle of the costly benefits package a traditional CIO would require.
- You guarantee a fresher perspective and more innovative ideas for handling your company’s IT issues.
- Having a virtual CIO can help you bypass the extensive long-term hiring and onboarding process.
It’s time your business started receiving the groundbreaking IT strategy only a chief information officer can provide. See how taking advantage of a virtual CIO from Computer Technology Management Services can set your organization up with network management and cloud services to take your business to its highest potential.
CIO as a Service and Why It Benefits You
Regardless of the type of technology advisory service you believe can best serve your business, your company could use the assistance of a qualified chief information officer. When you invest in CIO as a Service, you grant your company a strategic IT partner that assists you at any time, whether long term or short term.
Having a dedicated CIO consultant through CIO as a Service can benefit any organization, regardless of size. Because the individual in this role is a master at aligning IT requirements with your business’s strategic plans and technology trends, they can easily lead your organization to success within the confines of your company’s resources.
CTMS Guarantees Stability With Managed IT Services
Looking for a place to start when it comes to finding a suitable technology advisory service? Computer Technology Management Services offers IT consulting, remote help desk services, and virtual CIO services.
Share This Post
Computer Technology Management Services (CTMS) supports organizations nationwide with high-quality, customizable business IT tools and cybersecurity strategies for dealerships and more.