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  • Writer's pictureDavid Panitch

Why Your Business Doesn't Need a Full-time CIO

Updated: Aug 24, 2023

Since most of our clients are manufacturers we are focusing this blog post on the manufacturing sector, but you can certainly draw similar conclusions for other small and mid-sized businesses.

A manufacturer may not necessarily need a full-time CIO (Chief Information Officer) depending on the size and complexity of the organization, as well as the nature of its operations. Some reasons why a manufacturer might NOT need a full-time CIO include:

1. Limited IT requirements: If a manufacturer's operations are primarily focused on physical production, it may not have significant IT requirements that would warrant a dedicated CIO. For example, if the manufacturer uses simple production systems, has a minimal number of employees, and doesn't have complex data management needs, then a CIO might not be necessary. 2. No IT strategy required: A CIO is responsible for overseeing an organization's IT strategy, but if a manufacturer does not have a need for one then it does not need a CIO. For example, if the manufacturer's technology is relatively simple and stable, and there are no plans for significant technology projects or initiatives, a CIO may not be required. 3. Lack of resources: Smaller manufacturers often have limited resources and a tight budget, so they may not be able to afford a CIO position. They may have to rely on outsourcing their IT management to third parties and if that strategy is working well then they don't require a CIO. 4. Other management positions can oversee IT: In some cases, other management positions such as the operations manager, general manager, CFO may be able to oversee the manufacturer's IT needs. They may have the skills and knowledge to manage the manufacturer's IT requirements and provide direction for IT projects, eliminating the need for a dedicated CIO.

BUT if you are a mid-sized company with an innovative culture or have growth plans that seem to rely on adding head count, you should consider hiring a fractional CIO and possibly other key leadership positions. Most of the organizations that we work with just should not try to justify the expense of a full-time CIO, CFO, CMO, etc. This is not to say that these organizations wouldn't benefit from an executive with strong strategic experience in technology, finance, or marketing...just the opposite. A fractional executive can bring an organization great value at a "fraction" of the cost of a full-time employee AND with ongoing accountability and responsibility in the best interest of the company. A fractional is not "looking" for her next opportunity. She is focused on growing your organization and providing value to you ongoing.

If you'd like to talk about what a fractional can do for you, just let us know. We are always looking to help our clients in whatever way possible.

Email us at or call us at (912) 999-4004.

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