Chief information officer

The chief information officer (CIO) is responsible for the overall management of an organisations information and communication technology services. The CIO does not provide any of the ‘hands on’ services to ICT clients, however, they are responsible for ensuring that the ICT services provided are meeting the needs of the business.

The CIO has a responsibility to ensure that ICT helps the business to achieve strategic and operational goals that have been identified in the organisations strategic and operational plans. As a leader in the business the CIO will take part in identifying these goals.

The CIO will work with the business to identify what potential areas of growth that will need increased ICT support, once armed with that information the CIO will ensure that the ICT area has the capability of supporting the business when the need arises. The CIO is required to have very strong managerial and financial skills.

A CIO exhibits capabilities in line with the Skills Framework for the Information Age (SFIA)[1] and the Queensland Public Service Workforce Capability Success Profile[2].

Within the SFIA profile, the CIO has level 7 capabilities, i.e. sets strategy and initiates, influences, inspires and mobilises the skills outlined below.


Has defined authority and accountability for actions and decisions within a significant area of work, including technical, financial and quality aspects. Establishes organisational objectives and assigns responsibilities.


Influences policy and strategy formation. Initiates influential relationships with internal and external customers, suppliers and partners at senior management level, including industry leaders. Makes decisions which impact the work of employing organisations, achievement of organisational objectives and financial performance.


Has a broad business understanding and deep understanding of own specialism(s). Performs highly complex work activities covering technical, financial and quality aspects. Contributes to the implementation of policy and strategy. Creatively applies a wide range of technical and/or management principles.

Business skills

Absorbs complex information and communicates effectively at all levels to both technical and non-technical audiences. Manages and mitigates risk. Understands the implications of new technologies. Demonstrates clear leadership. Understands and communicates industry developments, and the role and impact of technology in the employing organisation. Promotes compliance with relevant legislation. Takes the initiative to keep both own and colleagues' skills up to date.

SFIA Skill Code

SFIA Skill

SFIA Skill Level of Responsibility

SFIA Skills Level Descriptor


IT strategy and planning


Leads the definition, implementation, communication of the organisation’s strategic management framework and directs the creation and review of an IT strategy and plans to support the strategic requirements of the business.


Information management


Specifies at a strategic level the business functions and data subjects needed to support future business and digital services, thereby enabling the development of an Information Architecture. Establishes and communicates the organisation's digital strategy, developing it as an integrated part of the business strategy. Directs digital resources, to create value for the stakeholders by improving the performance of the organisation, whilst maintaining the principles of professional standards, accountability, openness, equality and diversity and clarity of purpose. Responsible for compliance with regulations, standards and codes of good practice relating to information and records management, information assurance and data protection.


Enterprise and business architecture development


Directs the creation and review of an enterprise capability strategy to support the strategic requirements of the business. Identifies the business benefits of alternative strategies.

Directs development of enterprise-wide architecture and processes which ensure that the strategic application of change is embedded in the management of the organisation. Ensures compliance between business strategies, enterprise transformation activities and technology directions, setting strategies, policies, standards and practices.




Takes responsibility for a significant consultancy practice, including practice development, proposals/sales to internal or external clients, account management and managing the delivery of consultancy services over a wide range of topics.


IT management


Sets strategy for management of technology resources, including corporate telecommunications functions, and promotes the opportunities that technology presents to the employing organisation, including the feasibility of change and its likely impact upon the business. Authorises allocation of resources for the planning, development and delivery of all information systems services and products. Responsible for IT governance. Authorises organisational policies governing the conduct of management of change initiatives and standards of professional conduct. Maintains an overview of the contribution of programmes to organisational success. Inspires creativity and flexibility in the management and application of IT. Sets strategy for monitoring and managing the performance of IT-related systems and services, in respect of their contribution to business performance and benefits to the business.

Queensland Government roles align with the Queensland Public Service Workforce Capability Success Profile.

The success profile is a sector wide, one-government approach to the leadership behaviours expected of all public sector employees to support high performing workplaces.  The profile describes three performance dimensions (vision, results and accountability) and 13 leadership competencies required against four role types:

  • Individual contributor (manages self)
  • Team leader (manages individuals)
  • Program manager (manages multiple teams/projects)
  • Executive (manages program managers).

When developing a Role Description, identify the role type and then focus on the most important attributes and create a balance between SFIA skills and leadership skills.

Entry points

To have a career such as a chief information officer a bachelor level degree in areas such as information technology, information systems or business would be highly regarded.

Learning and development

Formal training and on the job experience are important ways to improve and develop the required skills.

[1] The Skills Framework for the Information Age (SFIA) provides a common language that integrates with an organisation’s way of working, to improve capability and resource planning, resource deployment and performance management.  This role profile quotes extensively from the SFIA, under licence from the SFIA Foundation. Information about the SFIA can be found at

[2] The Queensland Public Service Workforce Capability Success Profile plays a key role in translating the government’s ‘talent management requirements’ into clear behavioural terms, while at the same time delivering organisational change and growth. The success profile is being utilised to align sector-wide talent management strategies, including workforce planning, talent acquisition, leadership development, capability development, performance management, career management and succession planning. See

Last Reviewed: 11 August 2017



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