Professional services firms – of all sizes and in all industries – have been taking greater interest in their organizational IT in recent years. As technology continues to drive evolution and innovation in the enterprise space, professional teams have come to recognize the power of information technology to drive increased productivity and growth. Most recently, professional leaders have been considering the benefits of outsourcing IT management entirely to what’s known as an outsourced chief information officer or OCIO.
The Basics: What is an Outsourced Information Officer (OCIO)?
Before we dive into the benefits of working with an outsourced information officer, let’s make sure we understand clearly what an OCIO is and what services they offer. Simply put, hiring an OCIO is an innovative approach for businesses who don’t necessarily have the financial or operational capacity to keep a Chief Information Officer on their internal payroll.
In large-scale enterprises, a Chief Information Officer (CIO) is responsible for managing all things IT – with a specific focus on the ‘big-picture’. A CIO makes sure that enterprise IT is positioned strategically and in a way that supports larger business missions. An outsourced CIO (OCIO) has this same responsibility for the businesses they work with, but they provide the services for a fixed monthly rate. This helps businesses avoid the huge expense of paying a salaried employee.
Here’s what an OCIO is responsible for handling:
- Reducing downtime & driving productivity
- Optimizing a proactive data security posture
- Driving cost efficiency
- Implementing IT best practices
- Planning strategically for the long-term
Should Your Business Consider Investing in an OCIO?
Now that we’ve gone over what an OCIO is and what they’re responsible for handling, it’s time to consider whether or not an OCIO would be a good fit for your business. The key to determining this is all about taking an inventory of the kind of IT support and planning your business could benefit from. The truth is, depending on the nature and size of your business, there really are countless reasons to consider investing in an OCIO. We’ve listed the most common reasons below.
Here’s the top reasons businesses like yours are considering hiring an OCIO:
- You want your systems to run more efficiently – If you know there are areas of your network that could use some optimization and support, then an OCIO might be the right choice for you. A reliable OCIO will make sure your business systems are positioned to support optimal productivity and streamlined collaboration.
- You want to reduce costs – If downtime and technical troubles are affecting your bottom-line, considering an OCIO is a smart choice. An OCIO can help make sure your IT infrastructure is positioned to support maximum cost-efficiency. Additionally, if you have in-house IT support but are reconsidering the expense, an OCIO is the ultimate cost-efficiency alternative.
- You want to take advantage of new IT innovations – You’re busy enough. You don’t have the time to be keeping constantly in the loop about the latest and greatest IT innovations for your industry. By partnering with a strategic OCIO, you can rest assured you have a team of professionals staying up-to-date on industry news, who can provide recommendations and implementation support.
- You want to develop a stronger IT security strategy – Your business network truly is the backbone of your organization. Without a dynamic and reliable IT security strategy, your business data and continuity are put at risk. An OCIO can help make sure your cybersecurity strategy is proactive and reliable. Even better? They’ll stay in your corner to help solve any security issues that do arise.
- You want to position your company for long-term scalability – Growth is likely the driving motivation behind your business. You deserve an IT system that is designed to support your existing operations and position you for seamless growth as demand increases. The right OCIO will have a detailed strategy that positions your IT infrastructure for optimal scalability.
Finding the Right OCIO for Your Business
Now that we’ve had a chance to explore the reasons for partnering with an OCIO, we’re hoping you’re convinced and ready to start the search for the perfect OCIO to support your business. Make sure you go into your search with a clear idea of what you’re looking for – this will help each OCIO you consider explain, in detail, how they can help your business thrive.
Additionally, be sure to prioritize customer service when searching for a reliable OCIO. Expertise and experience are undoubtedly important, but the customer service experience you receive will really make all the difference when it comes to a sustainable and productive partnership.
The right OCIO will prioritize these pillars of customer service:
- Clear & open consultation – The right OCIO will consult with you openly and honestly from the outset, and they’ll always communicate with you in a language you can understand.
- Responsive and proactive support – The right OCIO will be on stand-by to answer your questions and provide strategic consultation whenever it’s needed.
- A commitment to customization – The right OCIO will be willing to customize their services offerings to meet the unique needs of your business. Don’t settle for anything less than a personalized OCIO experience.
- Passionate about your business growth – The right OCIO will care just as much about your business’ success as you do. They’ll work passionately to develop IT strategies that are designed to support business growth.
If you’re already on the hunt for a reliable and strategic OCIO, we welcome you to reach out to the team of IT professionals at CIO Advise. OCIO services are our specialty and we have extensive experience working with professional teams of all shapes and sizes to provide dynamic and growth-oriented OCIO services. We work alongside each client to develop an OCIO service arrangement that is customized and strategic.
Stop putting off the optimization of your organizations IT infrastructure. Take advantage of enterprise-grade CIO support by reaching out to CIO Advise at (888) 242-0244. We’re on standby ready to help you optimize your company network for long-term sustainability.