350 – 400 people
Our client is a multi-office firm of accountants, with eight major offices and around four hundred staff.
The firm has considerable in-house IT skills, spanning infrastructure, development, support and project management. The executive team recognise that IT is one of the biggest non-payroll costs for the firm, and sought external oversight to ensure:
- Good technology choices
- Optimal return on investment
- Continual improvement to processes, staff and competitive edge
Recruiting an internal CTO for this role, whilst expensive, was certainly in the reach of this firm. However, a full-time CTO would probably not be able to fill their time effectively; this would mean them becoming involved in projects that were a poor return on their time, or –to put it bluntly –becoming stale or bored.
We proposed providing our CTO service. The engagement comprises a monthly operations meeting during which the IT team discuss issues arising and plan for the month ahead. The CTO facilitates this meeting and provides technical/personal/sector insight as appropriate. Every other month there is a strategic meeting; some of the IT team attend this, along with the finance and managing partners and other executive members as needed. The purpose of this meeting is to review strategy and ensure that the strategic goals for the firm are properly represented in the on-going IT projects. It also considers new projects, approves spend/progress, and forms a liaison with the rest of the partnership.
The firm has a very well-run IT department, with room for personal career progression and a purposeful engagement with the professional staff in the firm. The IT department undertakes and executes projects in a timely fashion, with strong executive sponsorship and good communication with the whole firm.