CIO
Austin, TX

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Job Description :

The Chief Information Officer (CIO) will have overall responsibility for developing and leading the technology strategy. The CIO will be required to provide highly effective leadership to the IT team to ensure timely and effective delivery of critical technology programs, initiatives and business solutions, while creating a positive culture and high employee engagement and trust. The successful candidate will be required to balance strategic leadership with a hands-on approach to operational and financial management in a fast-paced environment.

The CIO is a member of the senior leadership team and is expected to be a strategic business partner by understanding key business drivers and building effective relationships with peers and their teams. The CIO will chair the Executive IT Steering Committee.

The environment is composed of mostly legacy applications. The organization has grown rapidly, and the systems need to be upgraded over time to be more flexible and adapt to changing business conditions. Several critical projects to modernize the systems supporting the profitability and growth of the company are already in progress. The projects include a new PeopleSoft back-office implementation supporting Finance, HR and Payroll. Additionally, new channels, dynamic pricing and decision science capabilities are being developed to support our Pawn & Retail and Financial Services product offerings.

Key Areas of Responsibility include :

As the principal technology expert of organization, guide senior management's understanding and effective sponsorship of IT initiatives and represent the company's technology needs and interests at all levels

Drive the creation and implementation of an IT strategy that supports the business goals and moves the company forward in a profitable manner

Guide the organization through a transition from a legacy environment to highly effective and efficient technology platforms over time

Establish a clear definition of functional excellence in IT and enthusiastically promote the potential of technology as a business enabler, championing the benefits to be derived from technology, including the added value generated and the potential of its marketing/cross-sell implications

Lead effective IT governance process whereby all key stakeholders are brought into the decision-making process and all relevant ideas are brought forward for discussion. Drive the prioritization process by aligning business goals with IT resources and identifying the initiatives that are of the highest value to the business and gain buy-in for those initiatives. Once determined, hold all parties accountable to uphold the decisions and keep the plan on track

Lead and manage teams within the IT organization to ensure active cross-functional team participation in the delivery of information solutions to clients. Establish and maintain an empowering IT team environment that encourages employee excellence, provides for technical development, fosters positive employee relations and reinforces affirmative action

Partner with the various IT organizations on matters relating to infrastructure and information security to ensure the IT environment is highly secure

In charge of managing the budget process and all deadlines related to IT projects. Responsibilities also include maintaining high-availability of all technological needs for the business unit. Must maintain project delivery within established corporate guidelines and oversee contracts for all computer and communication technology hardware , software and services in cooperation with legal and procurement departments

Recruit, develop, and retain highly-skilled professionals who can consistently deliver quality results that meet stated business objectives. Implement a management approach that drives organizational performance, encourages creativity, holds people accountable, develops technical proficiencies and rewards key performers

Critical Competencies for Success

Leadership skills: Collaboration, integrity and respect for people are critical. It is therefore critical to have a CIO who demonstrates a thoughtful, team-oriented, "roll-up-the-sleeves" style. The CIO and the overall IT organization must be viewed as an innovative and efficiency-oriented enabler of business strategy. In order to be successful the CIO must:

Build a bridge with the business by demonstrating excellent communication skills with the business leadership and the IT team, acting as the translator for key technology initiatives

Gain immediate credibility with senior leadership and the IT staff by listening, creating relationships and developing IT plans that align with business goals

Offer solutions to enhance the business and know when to be decisive on IT matters after fully considering input from the business

Be a "player-coach" who leads by example, valuing his/her people and providing strong mentoring and development opportunities to the team

Have a track record of fostering an open and trusting environment that encourages innovation and diversity of thoughts and ideas

Results oriented: Promotes an environment with a strong focus on teams working together to achieve the best results for the organization. The CIO will need to:

Foster an environment with open communication, where all relevant ideas are heard, plans are formulated and clearly communicated and potential pitfalls are recognized and addressed

Drive accountability into the mindset of the IT organization and the business sponsors for new technology

Encourage creativity to come up with solutions when extra resources are unavailable

Desired Skills and Experience

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to successfully perform the critical tasks listed above. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skills and abilities required for success.

A minimum of ten years of experience, including proven success at the CIO level in a fast-paced, consumer-focused environment, ideally within the retail or financial services industry

Demonstrable experience in leading multi-disciplined teams, driving both packaged solutions and custom development in a rapidly growing and fast-paced environment

Previous experience leading a team of 100 or more professionals

Significant knowledge of software development processes and project management methodologies around effective solution design, development and quality assurance

Proven success in delivering large-scale step-change, multi-year initiatives on time and under budget

Experience working in a matrices environment and effectively partnering with multiple stakeholders

A bachelor's degree in computer science, business administration, mathematics or a related major is required; a master's degree would enhance the qualifications but is not required.

Required Personal Characteristics

The successful candidate will demonstrate exceptional leadership skills with a proven understanding of the impact of applying high levels of emotional intelligence to positively impact team performance

Ability to establish immediate credibility as an extremely capable hands-on business leader and technologist with a direct decisive style

High emotional intelligence with low ego needs

The ability to foster relationships across the organization

The position requires executive presence, with excellent verbal and written communication skills at all levels, as well as experience with significant change management initiatives

The individual should demonstrate initiative, exercise good judgment and be confident with decision making

Proven success in contracting, negotiating, organization development and change management, financing, accounting, strategic planning and action planning

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