Hopefully the information below can provide some answers to any questions you may have.  If not, just give me a call to find out more.

Our CFO already manages IT. Why get a CIO?

It's a fairly common theme for a CFO to be managing IT, and the decision is largely driven by the fact that most organisations simply don't have a full time requirement for a CIO. The problem however is that most CFOs just don't have the expertise in IT to ensure the best results are obtained. The end result is a cost to the company because:

  • The executive managing IT is not able to fully focus on their field of expertise.
  • Efficiencies and fit for purpose decisions are not fully identified and implemented.
  • Risks are often not identified and treated, so may eventuate with detrimental effects.

This is exactly why I started Virtual CIO Brisbane - to assist companies where a non IT executive is tasked with managing IT. No longer do CFOs have to fumble their way through managing their IT function - they can rely on someone who knows IT inside and out, from strategy to operations, and for only the hours they require.

Are you any good?

My work style could be best described as:

  • Relaxed
  • Motivated
  • Honest
  • Results focused
  • Completer of tasks
  • Accountable

Please have a look at some of my results

Are you just an IT consultancy service?

IT Consultancy generally revolves around one-off services, and while I can do this if I have spare capacity, my primary goals are to:

  • gain long term part time engagements
  • become an accountable part of your team
  • work with you to optimise your IT investment
  • help your company grow

 

What happens when our company gets bigger?

Although I like to work with clients on an ongoing regular part time basis, my job is to help your company grow. Being realistic, that means you may eventually have the requirement to engage a full time IT Management resource, either by recruiting externally or by promoting internally. I am able to assist with any recruitment or training activities to ensure you have the appropriate expertise to manage your IT spend ongoing.

Do you manage IT projects as well?

I am Prince2 qualified (project Management), and have extensive experience across diverse areas such as desktop roll-outs, software development and communications upgrades.

With an eye for detail, the right questions get asked to work out the tasks and the flow of the projects. If your organisation is investing in IT transformation projects, it's critical to engage someone with experience who can identify and schedule tasks, estimate costs, allocate resources, and effectively manage the changes through the lifecycle.

How much does it cost?

Unfortunately this is something that can't be answered without first determining your requirements, but my rates vary between $140 and $180 per hour depending on what I am doing. Initial discussions will be around the type of skills and effort required, and this will help to determine the expertise and rate for the work. A detailed report on effort is always provided, and all work is agreed upfront.

I can say however that I am significantly more cost effective than other companies providing a Virtual CIO service, for the reason that this business is just me, and I basically have no overheads.

 

I already have IT support staff in-house

If you already have IT support staff in-house, but no Managerial or Strategic expertise, then you have come to the right place.

I complete what would essentially be called "CIO" or "IT Manager" tasks on a part time basis, for only the hours you need, and these are very different to IT Technical tasks. Obviously one of the deliverables will be to make sure that your IT systems are consistently available for use and direct your IT support function to that effect, but largely effort will revolve around planning, increasing efficiencies, reducing risk, and providing fit for purpose solutions that allow your business to maximise profits and grow.

While most medium sized businesses have an IT support function, they typically do not complete management level tasks because they:

  1. are not aware of them, and / or
  2. don't have the expertise to complete them, and / or
  3. aren't big enough to engage a full time expert resource

Hence why Virtual CIO Brisbane exists!

I already have outsourced IT support and services

While you may have a large amount of your IT services outsourced, you still often need someone to understand the bigger picture, and make sure everything is working together and for the business. There are pros and cons to outsourced IT services, but the main thing is that you're still probably only outsourcing service delivery, and there are many optimisation areas that are not being considered.

More importantly, if you're outsourcing a lot of your IT services, you need someone who understands IT to ensure that you've asked for the right things, that they're delivering, and that you're getting value for money.

What do you mean by 'Virtual'?

It doesn't mean that you will never see me! Typically I complete most of the work onsite because I'm part of your team and need to be on the ground to understand how your organisation works, and how to improve it. Really the term 'Virtual CIO' is just something that executives understand as a part time IT Managerial role, responsible for directing IT strategy and operations. There are many ways to describe this service such as 'part time', 'virtual', 'outsourced', 'dedicated', and 'flexible'.

In simple terms:

  • I am an outsourced IT service provider, which can be referred to as "IT as a Service" (ITaaS).
  • You engage me on a contract basis, so I'm not on your payroll - I invoice you for effort, and cover my own holidays, superannuation and insurances.
  • I provide expertise for medium, large and high growth enterprise.
  • The model is geared towards  regular part time engagements as a preference, where you engage me for only the hours you require.
  • I can also cater for irregular and consultancy engagements as well.

Why the Virtual / 'part time' CIO model?

It enables companies to get access to an expert resource that they normally would not be able to afford, and it allows me to work across multiple companies.

This is a change to the standard IT resourcing model, as typically an organisation will distribute tasks amongst existing staff until it is large enough to engage a full time resource. The problem with this model is that until it gets large enough (which may never happen), it won't have appropriate expertise for the role, and it's both risky and cost-ineffective to distribute IT Management tasks to technical staff or non IT executives.

The other main issue is that many companies won't even be aware of the tasks that a CIO or IT Manager would handle. Without appropriate awareness, they will not complete IT Managerial tasks, and therefore will incur risks and costs due to inefficiencies.

Really the part time Technology Strategy model makes a lot of sense.  You get your own IT expert to plan and make great changes (for efficiency and removal of risk), and you don't need to be paying a massive full time salary or expensive IT consultancy rates.

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