Picture this: you’re moving your office to a new location, and while the majority of your resources are in the cloud, you still have a great deal of equipment and resources that need to be moved, updated, or eliminated. Do try to do everything with existing staffers? Or bring in outside help?
Before you scoff at the idea of outside help being within your budget, have you heard of a virtual Chief Information Officer (vCIO)?
What is a vCIO?
A vCIO is an outsourced IT department head who provides IT consulting and strategy to optimize your business processes and increase office productivity.
Just like a full-time CIO, vCIOs can manage every aspect of your IT infrastructure. They can also identify gaps in your technology and contribute in huge IT decisions so you can leverage your technology to increase your revenue.
When should a business hire a vCIO?
The best time to hire a vCIO is early on, when you can’t afford a full-time IT strategist but need to start laying the foundation for a long-term technology roadmap. Keep in mind that a vCIO is different than an everyday technician. The latter knows how to fix day-to-day computer problems whereas the former knows how to make big-picture adjustments that reduce costs and improve customer service.
If you doubt the value of consulting and strategy, consider some of these projects:
- You need to migrate dozens of users and their data to the cloud
- Your entire IT infrastructure needs an overhaul
- Regulatory compliance requires ongoing risk assessments and data access audits
- You work in an industry that is heavily targeted by hackers
- You have complex systems that need to be streamlined and simplified
What are the advantages of hiring a vCIO?
Arguably the first and most important reason is reducing costs. vCIO services are traditionally charged reduces on-demand, which means you can stick with only the most important projects and put off the others until the budget allows. Compare that to the $162,000 average salary of an in-house CIO in Charleston.
Moreover, you won’t have to worry about the benefits that you usually provide a regular employee like paid leave time, insurance, and retirement benefits. You’re paying for the results, not the person.
In some situations, a vCIO is actually financially incentivized to find ways to cut costs without hurting your business goals. Think of it like an investment that will pay dividends.
How can a vCIO increased productivity?
Hiring an outsourced IT expert, the time you’ll otherwise allocate to cater to your company’s tech needs can be used to manage the more important areas of your business. This gives you more time to improve the processes that can directly contribute in achieving your company’s core goals.
It’s common for SMB employees to handle several tasks in a company. Having a vCIO will free up a significant amount of their time, so they can focus on the job they were hired for in the first place. vCIOs can also identify the gaps in your systems and processes that only someone at their level of expertise can spot. This means you won’t need to micro-manage every nook of your company’s IT anymore.
Customized reports for your business
Even with the best data analytics software, you may still oversee some holes and areas for improvement in your IT infrastructure. A vCIO can help you thoroughly assess your analytics data and make major business decisions based on it.
Moreover, they have the expertise to plan how to maximize your current IT set-up, which hardware or software needs updating, and what improvements in technology are worth investing in. They will provide thoroughly researched reports on how to improve your business based on your company’s resources and specific needs.
Entrust your office technology only to an experienced vCIO with reliable customer services and innovative IT solutions. If you have more questions about vCIO, contact Integrated Technology Services now.