Many businesses simply do not have the resources or budget to hire technicians to perform regular maintenance on their systems, let alone someone who is managing the technicians behind the scenes. The chief information officer, or CIO, is the one who would normally make these calls, but businesses that cannot hire an in-house CIO for whatever reason have the option of hiring a virtual CIO.
A virtual CIO is basically the same as a traditional CIO, just not on-site. A virtual CIO is an outsourced IT resource that is under contract with your organization to provide services involved with handling your company’s IT strategy.
The major difference here is that a virtual CIO looks at your IT strategy as a whole and how that strategy aligns with your business’ goals. When done properly, the virtual CIO encourages and informs your IT decisions, allowing you to move toward your organization’s specific goals.
The best way to illustrate the difference between technicians and the virtual CIO is that technicians are responsible for addressing day-to-day challenges and issues for your organization’s IT infrastructure, whereas the virtual CIO is responsible for ensuring that the business’ long-term technology goals are met. Think about the virtual CIO as the travel agent booking your vacation, planning things in the style of a roadmap each step of the way.
The first notable benefit of a virtual CIO is the price. Considering their status as a c-suite employee, the traditional CIO is going to require considerable compensation. Small businesses often cannot offer competitive salaries for such high-demand talent, so instead of investing in a position, you can instead invest in a service with more affordable monthly payments. Plus, you don’t have to invest in the searching or hiring process of finding a CIO, increasing the value you get from outsourcing.
Furthermore, there is a certain level of objectivity that comes from a virtual CIO. Sometimes people get caught up in the passion of running a business and start to make decisions that might not make sense. They let their feelings and predispositions dictate their actions. Someone from outside the organization is more likely to make more objective decisions, hence why many companies opt to hire external auditors or consultants.
Without someone spearheading your IT efforts, they are doomed to fail. Let SCW take this task on and you can say goodbye to the stress associated with technology decisions. To learn more, reach out to us at (509) 534-1530.
Sam is a network engineer with a broad range of experience spanning more than 35 years. He wrote is first piece of code in 1979 and has been involved with the industry ever since. For the last 20 years, he has worked for SCW Consulting where he has embraced his passion for network technology and security.
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