Specialist Guide to Interim CIOs/CTOs as we transition from the “New Interim” (& possible Third Wave) to the “New World”

With AI technology at the core and humans at the helm, scaleXT is here to deliver optimal technology leadership services to help you through this ongoing pandemic.

Why an Interim CIO/CTO?

As scaleXT commented during the first lockdown it is likely that the ongoing COVID-19 impact we are facing would go through three distinct moments that provide the context for shaping strategy.

The first which New Zealand has already been through twice (…and may soon return to with a possible third wave in Northland) is the “lock-down” where movement, activity, business, social interactions are restricted to essential activities.

The second is “the new interim”. This is likely to be the period of at least the next 3 to 12 months where businesses operating models need to be different as we await the deployment of COVID vaccines mid 2021 whilst we continue to play Russian roulette at the boarder trying hold off a what is feared to be a significant more contagious third wave – as seen in Northland yesterday – and return of the virus in the community. This period may be long enough to shape a new normal so developing an adaptive strategy becomes pertinent. The role of the Interim CIOs/CTOs can help inform your businesses response in practical and strategic terms to this new paradigm of; developing new (possibly digital) channels to market, maintaining business operations (BAU) in the event of a return to an extended “lock-down” period (…or regional variation of it) – amongst all manner of BAU crushing scenarios. This current moment provides us the frame to reflect on our future and the role of strategy in shaping it…

The third moment in time post vaccine will be the “new world” that we will evolve into during the first two periods.

According to Ted Snyder, Professor of Economics and Management at the Yale School of Management, and former Dean of both Yale SOM and Chicago Booth School of Business, companies and individuals who can develop and create best practices during “the new interim,” and disseminate those best practices will be market leaders and will have ample opportunities to create value.

According to Vijay Gurbaxani, the director of the Center for Digital Transformation at the University of California, Irvine the CIO role has now definitely become more central [to contingency strategies] because technology mediates almost every single interaction in business these days.

At scaleXT we are building a firm view that one critical component managing the transition from the “new interim” to the “new world” and implementing these new business models will be down to whether many New Zealand SME businesses are able to rapidly bringing on board technology domain expertise in the form of an interim (or virtual) CIO (Chief Information Officer) / Chief Technology Officer (CTO) – or technology advisor. This strategic and tech centric role will play a critical part in building the life raft in phase two and then preparing you to thrive and take advantage of the rebound in the new normal of the phase three.

Different types of interim CIOs/CTOs:

Traditionally the interim CIO/CTO would come in when a business a met a certain inflection point in their growth curve, or revenue number, or number of employees. Nowadays in the new COVID world different types of Interim technology leadership-as-a service CIOs/CTOs:

Short term
1 – 4 weeks – focused on an isolated problem or opportunity where they come into your business like an A&E medical doctor to rapidly assess and diagnose your current business health vital signals – or use as a try before you buy experience.

Medium term
2 – 3 months – to help you navigate your next 100 days and rapidly adapt your team in order to implement new business models to help you pivot into new niches or markets.

Long term
3 – 12 months, or ongoing – a longer term commitment with them to help bed in the new operating model and work with both your exec team and the business to deliver to the strategic plan.

How do I get started?

There are three options;

1. Do it yourself – you will need to consider the following: Who is in your network? Find potential candidates. Understand the supply and demand dynamic and learn where the available candidates are. Follow up leads, referrals and tidy up your Job Description


2. Use a traditional recruitment agency – save your own time trading this for a pretty big commission or fee. When looking for an agency make sure you consider the following: Use an agency with a large network who can leverage their relationships to find you the best candidates first.


3. Use scaleXT – since our launch 3.5 years ago we have now built the largest dataset map of operating interim technology executives in New Zealand to serve public, private, and private-equity owned organisations across all sectors by placing world-class operational leaders in technology leadership roles (CIO, CTO, and CISO) via innovative and compelling arrangements such as interim, part-time, and tech advisory leadership initiatives. We can deploy a seasoned technology leader, well-versed in your sector and situation, within 24 hours. If needed, that executive can be accompanied by subject matter experts in extended areas unique to the client’s situation.

Next steps:

Now you have a clear understanding of the interim CIO landscape across New Zealand and have reflected back on your defined need, including the role they’ll play in shaping your future. You’re now in a position to develop a plan, either by yourself or with your recruitment agency professional or scaleXT.

We’d like your NEXT STEP to be with scaleXT so you can explore how they can help you get what you want, quickly and effectively.


Can we answer your question?

What topics will be discussed during our initial discovery session?
We’re here to help so we’ll discuss just about anything you want. But we expect most conversations will focus on the technology and security aspects of newly-enacted work-from-home/remote policies and other business continuity measures.

How does scaleXT interim technology leadership services work?
scaleXT now allows early adopters to access a seasoned interim technology leader through the best of both worlds. A fusion of AI technology at the core with high touch recruitment at the helm.

Why should I care?
At no other time in history has the role of interim CIO, CTO, CISO or advisor role become more central [to contingency strategies] because technology mediates almost every single interaction in business in this new COVID world.

How fast is scaleXT?
We can deploy a seasoned technology leader, well-versed in your sector and situation, within 24 hours. If needed, that executive can be accompanied by subject matter experts in extended areas unique to the client’s situation.

What powers your AI?
We use a proprietary AI powered algorithm called Enigma that replicates the way that the human brain works to improve decision making at a scale previously not possible.

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