How to be a CIO

‘The higher you get in the organization, the less your technology skills will matter.’

If you want to ascend to the top technology spot in a credit union, learn to collaborate, communicate, and bring value to all areas of the organization.

That’s the consensus of a panel of hiring experts at the co-located CUNA Technology Council and CUNA Operations & Member Experience Council Conferences Tuesday in Phoenix.

“In the past, technology people were put in a back room and, as long as the computers worked, everything was ok,” says Bobby Michael, president/CEO of Army Aviation Center Federal Credit Union in Daleville, Ala. “Now, information technology departments need to be integrated with other departments. We don’t need loners; we need CIOs who can integrate into the mainstream and who are good collaborators and communicators.”

Brian Kidwell, executive vice president at D. Hilton Associates, agrees the role of the chief information officer (CIO) and chief technology officer (CTO) is changing. “When we started, it was all about, ‘Does this person have Symitar experience?’ But it’s not about products or the latest piece of equipment or software anymore,” he says. “It’s about using technology to find out what members need or to help staff serve members faster. CIOs don’t even need to have banking experience.”

 

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