In the climate of rapid digital transformation, as new roles and responsibilities emerge in the digital business landscape, it is crucial to understand the role and responsibilities of a Chief Technology Officer. A CTO’s responsibilities are concerned with more than just the technical direction of a company as a whole, and have to address the larger picture of the business every step of the way.
Here are the four key responsibilities every CTO needs to execute:
A CTO Crafts Strategy, Not Code
Every so often, many first time CTOs forget that as a C-suite member their responsibility extends further into taking care of strategy and business development work. “My dual role isn’t only about merging the functional silos and mindsets of R&D and marketing within our organization,” says Mahbubul Alam, CTO and CMO at Movimento. In his experience, CTOs need to be able to reach across and bridge functional silos within an enterprise and foster efficiency, collaboration, and speed across the company.
A CTO Leads People and Process
For most CTOs, their day offers a challenging combination of strategy and leadership. If anyone was wondering how exactly a CTO spends their day, if not writing code, here are some of the activities which typically occupy their focus and attention:
- Guide development work, by establishing standards and processes that ensure agile and self-reliant operations within the technology vertical
- Foster leadership skills within the technology team and encourage innovation
- Making sure that the company is progressing on the right track while implementing the best practices in engineering, development, and technology adoptions
- Working in-sync with other stakeholders, like the product and marketing teams to synergize verticals towards business outcomes
A CTO Unifies the Company
An age-old problem that still prevails in many companies is that of teams working in silos. When employees are more aware of what’s going on with other teams, they are likely to take more informed and effective decisions. The role of the CTO, in this case, would be to highlight the achievements of the engineers for visibility across the organization, and also, raise the engineering team’s profile externally.
A CTO Represents the Company
A large chunk of a CTO’s functions include :
- Attending and speaking at conferences
- Encouraging developers by addressing them locally
- Hosting, sponsoring, or attending awareness-raising meet-ups
- Giving interviews to various media channels.
Your CTO may not always be available on site, as much of his functions involve profile-building, or spreading the word, or even publishing thought leadership content. This ensures that your organization continues to thrive and keep hiring talented professionals that contribute to the core value proposition of the company.