The Role of the IT Director in a Modern Business Organization

Meta description: The IT director makes important decisions affecting the IT team and largely the business. Here is the role that this person plays.

Well, he is the director, the guy in the hot seat, calling the shots, directing cuts, fighting for an increased budget to buy better equipment, and generally making sure that the IT department does what it does best – enable the other departments to succeed.

But there is more to an IT director than meets the eye. Even now in the 21st century, there are still people who do not know what value IT adds to business. Yet, IT is the wheel on which every other business process runs.

Creating IT policy

Mostly, the IT director will create the policies that will drive the IT team, say, for a given period like 3 months, 6 months, a year, 5 years and so on. You see, for the director to ensure that the business derives utmost value from IT, he/she must lay down long-term and short term IT plans and the strategies to implement with his team as they move towards achieving the bigger vision for the business.

In any business, there will be many different needs for IT. It is the duty of the IT director to find out what every department needs and to make sure that they are provided with the same.

He will also oversee the IT team to make sure that they utilize the resources assigned to them amicably, for the profitability of the company. He will also do some study and see what tools of technology the business will need in the near or far future.

Reports to senior managers or the CEO

The IT director reports to a senior manager or even to the CEO himself. Since most of the IT strategies will require a big amount of money to be implemented, only people at the senior levels of management can approve of such. In addition, he must be able to show them how profitable the implementation of a system will be, in the end. You see, for many business heads, what matters is whether a certain system will mean more ROI. If yes, then they will give the IT director the okay to go ahead.

He must have the interests of the business at heart because at the end of the day, he is going to come up with IT policies that will help in the achievement of the bigger business objectives. Thus, he must understand the business objectives and develop IT strategies that are in accordance with those objectives. Remember, the main job of IT is to enable the performance of the other departments in a business.

Here is more about how an IT director runs his show

   1. The duty of recruiting, training and managing his team of IT staff falls squarely on his laps. Since he understands the tools of technology, he would be best suited to spot, hire and train the best IT talent, even more than HR management.

   2. He oversees the implementation of security measures that will keep the company data safe from hackers and the equipment from virus attacks, spyware and malware deployed by people with ill intent. This security will be extended to business-issued mobile devices since they too carry a lot of business data.

   3. He will oversee the reengineering of certain applications so that they can fit the needs of the company. Most of the vendor applications have to be customized since they are generic.

   4. Do periodical reviews of the performance of the available systems to see what needs revamping, what needs to be done away with and so on.

   5. He will be the IT department’s link to the senior management. Thus, he will communicate with the chief information officer (his immediate senior if there is one) as well as the end users to see that they have all they need. For example, he will oversee the establishment of the IT help desk for technical support.

   6. Negotiate with software vendors, draw up and sign agreements with them and oversee the customization of vendor supplied and supported tools.

   7. Create the IT budget for a given period, justify with cost against benefits reports and generally explain how investing in certain systems will add more value to the business.

   8. Ensure that the IT systems of the business can keep up with the changes that are brought about by the dynamic nature of IT. He/she will always ensure that IT is always in stand-by to meet the user demands at peak time without the systems crashing.

Conclusion

The IT director is supposed to perform many more duties. However, the most important include creating a budget, ensuring peak performance of the IT systems and streamlining all systems to run concurrently with the business objectives.

Posted on October 13, 2016 .