The External CTO How To

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What is the role of an external CTO?

First on foremost, the role of an external CTO is to provide clarity on information technology. The role of the CTO is to lead and manage the information technology of an organization. An external CTO does this while not being a full time member of the organization. In most cases the external CTO acts like a consultant. The benefits are that an organization can bring in expertise while not needing to commit to a full-time CTO at the current stage of the organization.

In many cases the external CTO helps in setting the technology choices and direction, e.g. cloud vs. on-premise and helps to make early IT decisions before a full-time CTO takes over.

How can you find an external CTO?

Finding an external CTO is like finding any C-level executive for your organization with a twist: You don’t need to offer a full-time position. That narrows the scope of your search. You should look for a person which is comfortable working remotely, and which has experience in working with and building distributed teams.

Looking for an external CTO?

Before you start looking for an external CTO, try to understand how and why you would trust another, external person. Write down these whys, and talk about them with any candidate. Having such a discussion early on helps you in selecting candidates.

Do you need help from an external CTO?

You are invited to discuss your situation and requirements with me. I’ve been in this situation, and I’ve worked as an external CTO. Just contact me.

Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash