A highly important position within all corporations, the IT Director will have the overall responsibility for the organisation’s networks, systems, hardware, software, and cloud computing operations. This is an interesting role that attracts those with excellent people management skills, an organised mindset, and a strong understanding of all things technological.

Duties and responsibilities - What does an IT Director do?

The many duties that an IT Director has will include the likes of:

  • Overall management of technical operations, including management of a diverse team of skilled IT professionals
  • Striving to reach several relevant business targets and reporting progress to other directors
  • Managing effective security measures to minimise risks to security
  • Increasing end user satisfaction levels by constantly improving relevant applications
  • Liaising with department heads, system users and other stakeholders to ensure maximum effectiveness of IT operations
  • Arranging upgrades, migrations and replacements of hardware and software utilities
  • Ensuring the company has a suitable disaster recovery policy and adequate contingency plans

Qualities needed for a successful IT Director

As befits such a senior role, several qualities will be needed to become a successful IT Director. Chief among them will be an understanding of technical applications that are available now, as well as a comprehension of those to come. A mindset that combines analytical and methodical thinking will be an advantage, and the ability to focus on the small things while remembering the big picture is a must.

Realistic candidates will also have extremely good communications skills, whether listening to concerns of team members or passing on technical information to other directors. There will be a need to compile reports at times, so those skills will have to be both verbal and written. Directors of IT can expect to be working under immense pressure occasionally, so remaining calm is a definite plus point.

Highly developed leadership skills will be required, and the ability to know what brings out the best in people. IT Directors are of course responsible for overall budgeting, so there will be great emphasis placed on financial skills, including forecasting.

Qualifications and technical skills - How to become an IT Director?

In most instances, potential employers will look for candidates who have gained a bachelor’s or master’s degree in the likes of information technology, computer science, computer engineering or business management. Experience working with relevant computer systems may also be a must, depending on the specific role.

While a Director of IT may not necessarily need to be fluent in computer languages, a good understanding of the strength and weaknesses of each will go a long way. Recruitment teams may also be on the lookout for candidates who have attained qualifications or certifications in some form of management within a corporate environment.

Career development - What is the next step after IT Director?

There are several roles that can lead an individual to that of IT Director. They include Software Engineer, Software Developer, IT Manager, Assistant IT Director, Cybersecurity Engineer and Web Developer. Later in the career path, there could be opportunities to work as Chief Executive Officer, Director of Operations or Managing Director.

Salary and remuneration - How much does an IT Director make?

Salaries and benefits packages for IT Directors are commensurate with similar Director positions in other sectors.

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