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Chief Information Officer

by Staff Reporter
If you have strong information technology and management skills then a career as a Chief Information Officer could be for you.

Career Overview

A Chief Information Officer (CIO) will manage the information systems of an organisation or business by making all the major decisions regarding the information framework of the company.  Furthermore, the Chief Information Officer will decide on the IT equipment that needs to be purchased, how it should be installed, when it will be updated and how it will be integrated into the rest of the company’s operations.  

Required School Subjects

You will need to have taken the following subjects at high school:

Pure Mathematics 

  • English (Home Language or First Additional Language)

Recommended subjects:

  • IT

Institution and APS

The following institutions are highly recommended for studies in business and technology:

  • University of Johannesburg (UJ) – APS of 26
  • University of Witswatersrand (Wits) – APS of 39+
  • University of Western Cape (UWC) – APS of 27+

Required Qualification/s

In order to qualify as a Chief Information Officer, you will need to have a formal qualification.  This should be a qualification in information systems, information technology of computer science.  There are differences in these qualifications however, each of them will give you a solid foundation to pursue a career as a Chief Information Officer. In general, you will be able to complete a Bachelor’s degree in Science or Commerce with specialisation in Information Systems or Computer Science.

Required Skills

You will need to have the following skills to succeed as a Chief Information Officer:

  • problem-solving skills
  • technical skills and industry knowledge
  • decicive
  • the ability to work under pressure
  • ability to think critically
  • an interest in information and communication systems
  • leadership

Where you can work

As a Chief Information Officer, you could work in any type of organisation or company.  Some of the possibilities include:

  • big private companies that supply computers
  • start-up organisations
  • government departments – universities and universities of technology
  • provincial administrations
  • medium or small businesses using computer systems and networks
  • software houses
  • self-employed: consultant

Working Hours

Chief Information Officers work normal hours however they often will work extra hours/on weekends when need be.

Expected Salary

As a qualified Chief Information Officer with at least five years of experience, you can expect to earn an average annual salary of R1 171 048 in South Africa.

What to expect

Here are a few things you can expect from a career as a Chief Information Officer:

  • this career calls for an individual to combine both management and IT skills
  • you will be responsible for overseeing and evaluating IT operations
  • this position also requires you to communicate at a senior level and be able to account for any technical decsions made

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