Journal of Information Technology

Document Type

Research Article


Information technology (IT) has become a strategic resource for many firms today. Coordination of this resource requires strong leadership and cooperation within the firm. The relationship of the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and the Chief Information Officer (CIO) is crucial for the effective, successful utilization of IT for competitive advantage. This paper first explores the CIO position, giving reasons for its development, tracing its evolution, and pinpointing certain responsibilities associated with the position. The paper then highlights the CIO's concerns and identifies the future implications for the CIO. The second portion of the paper takes the CEO's perspective towards IT and the CIO's position. Special attention is directed towards describing the CEO's perspective on the CIO's qualifications, addressing the problem of overblown CEO expectations for the CIO position, and discussing ‘old-line’ CEOs’ attitudes towards IT and the CIO position. Also addressed is the exploration of the common CEO perception of the CIO as an ‘empire builder’ and an analysis of the CEO's perspective on the future need for a CIO position. Finally the paper focuses on developing this ‘strategic partnership’ between the CIO and the CEO. Suggestions are provided for the CIO and the CEO to help achieve this ideal partnership. Although these suggestions are not all conclusive, they are critical to the ‘partnership’.