How to Become a CTO

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Lately, technology has been advancing at a rapid and explosive rate. This is why every company needs a chief technology officer (CTO) to keep up with the latest trends and technologies.

In this article, you can read more about the tasks and responsibilities of a CTO and how to become one.

Responsibilities of a CTO

These are the 4 most important areas of the business that a CTO puts his focus on:

  1. Implementing infrastructure: In this area, the role of the CTO is to ensure that the business is implementing new technologies, secure the data of the company, and maintain a safe network.
  2. Technology planning: There are many new technologies coming up every day. It is the CTO’s job to evaluate and to decide which new technologies the company will integrate.
  3. Customer focus: A CTO is focused on projects that will provide a positive customer experience.
  4. Thought leadership: A CTO must have a great understanding of technology trends in order to develop a strategy regarding the infrastructure.

Most common steps for becoming a CTO

First step: Earn a Bachelor’s degree

Every CTO starts their career by acquiring a bachelor’s degree in a computer science-related field. The most common one is in cybersecurity. A bachelor’s degree is the fundament if you want to start a professional career as a CTO. After gaining the degree, the next step is to gain some entry-level experience to become a CTO.

Second step: Gain real job experience

As a CTO, you can gain experience and knowledge by working in different IT areas, such as the following:

  • Network architecture
  • Big data engineering
  • Information security management
  • Web software development

Becoming a CTO is not easy because you must have over 15 years of working experience in the IT field before starting your search for a new job as a CTO. Experience and patience is the key for you to become a CTO.

Third step: Earn a master’s degree (not required)

If you have some experience working in the IT field, you can choose to pursue a master’s degree. This is optional, but IT professionals who have the ultimate goal to become CTO should try and get this degree.

What skills does a CTO have?

These are the skills you must possess if you want to become a CTO:

  • Business (knowledge and understanding in finance and business)
  • Leadership (motivate the employees in order to be more efficient)
  • Decision-making (have the gut to make important decisions)
  • Organization (manage different teams and departments)
  • Communication (open for feedback with the employees and executives)

Why choose a career as a CTO?

The answer to this question is simple. The annual average salary of a CTO is pretty high. This is only starting salary that will increase for the coming years. Another great thing is that in the next 10 years, there will be a significant rise in CTO job positions. An extra bonus is that a CTO can help an organization grow rapidly due to the new technologies emerging every day.