There is a very high demand for fractional CIO services in the US. The small business market is in dire need of better technology-based strategies to run more efficiently.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics has projected a consistent growth of CIO career jobs by as much as 32% by 2028. This career guide on Enterprises Project lists CIOs as among the highest paid technology professionals in the consultancy industry in 2020.
These figures are proof that businesses are willing to pay more for services that make it easy for them to pursue their growth plans and remain competitive in the modern workplace.
Managed Services have brought small and medium-sized businesses far. For a long stretch, they were a go-to solution for businesses focusing on cutting IT services costs without downsizing operations.
However, more and more companies realize the need for tech leadership and support beyond the traditional idea of ‘consulting. Managed Services could not deliver this, but Fractional CIOs can.
Is Fractional CIO All About the Future?
Today’s forward-looking companies with ambitious growth plans lead the way in adopting fractional CIOs to help them meet their goals. The battle for customers in the digital market happens in the future when the businesses are all grown. The one reason your business should consider fractional CIOs is because they help you to future-proof your business.
The idea behind future-proofing a business is a lot like personal development: that the present is comfortable because the systems work. It would be a mistake to assume that they will see the business through 2021.
Competition in every industry is all about looking for better and more resource-efficient ways to run business operations. Fractional CIOs use unique approaches to shape up a business’s basic structure and prepare it better to meet its day-to-day operational challenges.
We can summarize the roles of a Fractional CIO in three points.
1. To interpret the business requirements in terms of IT needs.
Fractional CIOs are very flexible and often specialize in industries. For instance, you may find IT service providers serving only health institutions or the financial sector. Despite their spread in the market, all the providers use technology to help businesses find IT solutions that work for them.
2. To develop unique strategies and support plans for the business.
Most existing businesses hire these professionals to complement their existing IT departments. The broad industry experience they bring has helped many companies accommodate future technologies in their plans.
3. To advise a business on the latest and cost-saving complementary IT systems and tools.
A passionate fractional CIO service provider would talk to you about what is new in the market the whole day. Most of them consider guiding the client on the best ways to save money on IT services and resources a part of their job.
Business competition is all about cutting costs, and for businesses, that means streamlining the IT services. In-house IT departments are so 2020s. A business can also use a CIO’s expertise to invest in solid infrastructure architecture and not rely on managed services.
For Fractional CIOs, It Is All About Simplicity
A good Fractional CIO would help prepare the sales, administration, financial, marketing, and every other arm of your business for the near future. Every part of the whole must be in alignment, not to facilitate the growth of the business, but to accommodate it when it does.
Every entrepreneur knows how difficult it can be to stay on top of events and news that affect business operations. As it grows, the business becomes more complex, and every system and part of the system evolves apart.
Regardless of your industry, you will admit a holistic but straightforward system that puts everything on one page would be invaluable. Even big companies are turning away from investing in an in-house strategic IT department. Every business that leverages a Fractional CIO direction is bound to use fewer resources to run their projects in the long run.
It is a common practice for businesses across the US to hire Fractional CIO services as the foundation of their IT department. The approach lays the groundwork that empowers the CIO to build a simple but effective system and structure the IT and support departments.
How Can You Tell the Best Fractional CIOs from the Rest?
You are convinced your business needs a Fractional CIO model to enjoy all the benefits of efficiency and simplicity. The next challenge will be choosing the best consultancy that will understand the future needs of your business.
A lot can be said about choosing a consulting company you can trust, but it all boils down to one thing: delivery model.
With so many Fractional CIO service providers, it would be easy for an entrepreneur to get lost in the marketing jargon. As a rule of thumb, go for firms that provide that plan that will be a long-term solution for your business, not a temporary fix.
Fractional CIOs can help a business deal with current as well as future challenges. Because short-term tools they develop are just as effective, some businesses fall into the trap of running away with small wins. Most of them adopt specialty tools that solve specific problems rather than holistic systems that coordinate every other facet of the business.
The best approach to future-proofing a company is to make the Fractional CIO IT provider the epicenter of the company. Without its wings clipped, the professionals will provide first-hand guidance to management and lead the charting of the path to the future.
Considering Remote Services
No one can accurately predict the future of the workplace, but one thing is clear: the global workforce will never return to the pre-pandemic era.
Businesses have had a short time and limited resources to adapt to a new way to work. Many entrepreneurs that consulted fractional CIOs, particularly at the beginning, can attest to the efficiency of the new way to solve technology problems at the workplace.
Businesses that adopted flexible technology solutions evolved and adapted to meet their customer’s needs. If yours did, you can attest to the difficulty in meeting goals at every business cycle in the face of a pandemic.
You can tell the efficiency of a fractional CIO service company based on how well they have adapted to the current workplace environment. A provider that is ready and even advocating for remote work is most likely to help your business achieve the same flexibility.
The widespread remote and work-from-home models have been a blessing in many ways. One less-appreciated benefit is how businesses in all industries and markets have found it easier to do business across states. The increased competition has had an unexpected benefit – businesses enjoy better but cheaper services.
Are you considering various solutions to streamline your business’ IT systems and departments? Remote work should be among the top items on your checklist. Make it a point to evaluate service providers based on their operation models before settling on the best.
Next Steps to Take Next
All said and done, every entrepreneur wants to know how a service directly benefits their business. They are:
- Better business and IT alignment
- Improved business agility
- Lower IT costs and improved IT Support
- Lower running costs mean more profits
- Reduced regulatory and security risks
Fractional CIO is New Technology; Read About It
There are many benefits to ditching Managed Services and going for Fractional CIO instead. However, how a business adopts the new systems and the choice of the expert can determine the success of the new system.
Over the past decade, there have been noteworthy advancements in the professional IT services industry. Most of the developments have made it possible for entrepreneurs to strike rich when they make the right predictions. We must also acknowledge that many investors made uninformed gambles and lost.
Dealing with Technology Debt
No one, especially a complex body like a growing business, can plan for technology debt. If you do not know it, technology debt is a software engineering concept that shows the implied cost of additional work due to choosing an easy way out. The greatest technology debt they have to pay comes about to most businesses because they fail to invest in long-term solutions.
While evaluating fractional CIO services, you must narrow down on providers with a long-term outlook. It is impossible to future-proof your business if you have to pay hefty interests on technology debt.
Are you an entrepreneur in a non-IT related industry? It is advisable that you take the time to understand the evolution of the business services industry, in particular Fractional CIO models. Understand the variety of services professionals in this IT field offer and check out the different services they have to offer.
There is no one-size-fits-all solution to developing business IT solutions. When you are ready, contact us for a free consultation from one of the most recognized names in the Fractional CIO business. You will need to speak to Fractional CIO to get personalized advice based on the nature of your business and its needs.