Why you don't need CTO?

Dawid Duniec

5 min of reading

11 December 2020

You have managed to gather your team of programmers who will create the perfect product for you, exactly as you dreamed of. The first success is achieved. However, from the very beginning of their work, you tend to face a lot of unexpected problems. Even though you presented your vision of the product to developers in detail they keep asking questions that are hard to answer and sometimes even understand.

You begin to realize how challenging day-to-day work with programmers can be and start looking for the possible causes of occurring problems. Without an experience in building teams which produce technology, you can easily come to the wrong conclusions. Following questions are coming up in your mind:

Maybe I should stop working with them?

Maybe building a tech company is not a job for me?

Or maybe you just forgot about hiring a very valuable person for your team?

ICEO's experience has shown that in the majority of such cases, you lack a technology manager who at the same time can understand your company's business needs. That person is the CTO.

Who is CTO?

This position has as many interpretations as there are companies that need that person. This is due to the fact that such a person must have many high competences that will allow him to become a communication port between the business and technical side of the company. This is a major challenge that the CTO has to deal with. In addition, he is also responsible for ensuring the high quality of the produced software. This responsibility can be fulfilled in many ways which include building large development teams, implementing the appropriate life cycle of subsequent versions of your application, and less pleasant tasks, such as verifying whether a specific person is suitable for a given team and should remain in it.

To sum up, the CTO is responsible for the efficiency of your development team, so that the cooperation will be willingly continued by both sides.

Is it really necessary?

Many technology companies founders usually begin their adventure with the IT world in a way described at the beginning of the text. They create a team of developers and then, with better or worse results, attempt to explain to them the main purposes of the cooperation. However, this communication can be complicated and generate a lot of problems. At the same time good understanding and ability to express the needs of the product turns out to be crucial for the development of the company and cannot be abandoned. A good CTO, is aware of the client's goal and is able to make technological decisions that l put the good of the company above everything. Highly appropriate arrangements in managing technological projects are the result of extensive experience in the systems production, maintenance as well as the willingness and skills necessary that are necessary to explore the product domain.

Those who never had to deal with coding often do not understand the seriousness of the decisions that must be made when working with developers. The biggest challenge is that sometimes seemingly small and insignificant decisions can bring negative results after days, months and sometimes even years! In such a situation, no one remembers how it happened. The only possible solution can be summarised in a short note that may come from programmers - “Everything must be rewritten". Making the right decisions not only ensures that there will not be the need to rewrite the entire system, but also is a way to save time and money.

Ok, you’ve convinced me. What’s next?

It is not easy to find a well-qualified person for this position. Especially that the experience of a given CTO should be adjusted to the current stage of the system development and the methodologies adopted in it. Even if we find someone, we may be quite surprised once we hear their financial requirements.

The knowledge and experience required to perform such a function costs money and it should not be a surprise us. Everyone’s expectation is to receive a salary adequate to their skills, experience and amount of work.

How can a company that is in the initial phase of the project and therefore cannot afford such a large investment, cope with such an expense?

There are companies that offer CTO as a service, which means that you can hire a person to perform this role in your company. At the same time, you do not have to hire them full-time, which automatically reduces the costs. The CTO will contribute to the design of the system through looking for appropriate solutions, he will also help to integrate the team of programmers employed by you or the software house. In the final phase of his work, a temporary CTO can even help with the hiring and training of someone who will take over his duties in the future. It is a solution which perfectly suits projects in the early stages of development, startups and those that already are mature but simply need to create the appropriate work culture so that your projects can be implemented faster than it is in competitive companies.

Dawid Duniec

Specialist in the field of enterprise solutions and FinTech products. As CTO he is known for his patience and ability to take a more comprehensive view of the project broader, not only in terms of functionality but also in terms of time. He is one of the few CTOs to think about the future of the project - reducing technological debt and ensuring scalability.