The Chief Investment Officer manages a business’s investments and is one of the highest-level executives in the company. From producing short-term plans to making recommendations for longer-term acquisitions, they keep an organization’s assets in good shape. Often the CIO is supported by a team that researches investment opportunities and takes care of day-to-day asset management tasks. In the modern world, the job of the CIO is evolving. The investment landscape is ever more competitive, clients are seeking better value and the markets can be difficult to read.
What day-to-day role do they perform?
Whether your business is a retail company, a bank or a not-for-profit organization, a CIO will manage your investment portfolio and take care of financial planning. They will be responsible for boosting the profits of your shareholders and reporting their progress to the board of trustees. Although they are based in the office, most CIOs will have meetings with trustees, investors and service providers around the country.
How could a CIO advance your company?
As well as increasing the flow of cash into your company, a good CIO is a leader and an enabler. They help to future-proof your organization from as yet unknown threats and work to build stronger links with clients, as well as other finance professionals.
Ensuring investments are sound
By drawing on their experience and carrying out extensive research, CIOs can minimize the risks involved with investing. Through frequent contact with stockbrokers, banks and fund managers, they can build a clearer picture of where the markets are headed. Using these insights to inform their decision making, a CIO can manage a portfolio that delivers solid returns and is responsive to the company’s demands.
Building and leading a successful team
Increasingly, clients are looking for investment tips that are both thought-provoking and original. By creating and leading a diverse team, the CIO can ensure a company has something to offer everyone. Recruiting skilled people and promoting those who have potential, keeps the team fresh and ensures that a company’s investment advice is always ahead of the curve.
Developing and implementing a strategy
Although connecting with experts and associates outside of your company is a vital part of the CIO’s work, internal modelling is just as crucial. They will look at research and data that has been gathered previously and see how the findings could be of benefit. This process can also involve examining how well the plans set in place for individual portfolios are working and tweaking the approach if necessary. As part of a larger team of managers, the CIO will look at where mistakes have been made and assess what needs to change to avoid similar situations. They will solicit the perspectives and opinions of the team, before making investment decisions that leave the company in a good position for future growth.
Attracting and retaining clients
When it comes to a company’s clients, responsiveness to their concerns and needs is essential. A CIO should be able to satisfy any queries and provide feedback that helps clients maintain confidence about what the organization has to offer. Part of this involves being a good communicator, but a CIO will also work hard to structure each portfolio in the best possible way to maintain a client’s loyalty. This involves constantly watching out for industry trends and taking a dynamic approach by changing direction when necessary.
Delivering fresh, informed ideas
CIO of Hong Kong-based Solitude Capital Management, Joel Werner is an MBA graduate with 20 years of experience in the industry. He has kept his company in a competitive position by successfully managing funds in a hands-on way. Although the CIO has to prioritize the upper levels of investing, there are many advantages to being involved with other stages of the process. Always allowing others to take over smaller tasks may lead to a CIO losing their perspective and dulling their senses. A proactive CIO is a supplier of solid ideas, capable of interpreting political, economic and financial data, then extracting the relevant statistics. With an overarching view of the current markets, they are capable of keeping the firm’s investments profitable.
Why a CIO remains a crucial role within many businesses
The role of a CIO may vary over time, but the performance of their company’s investments is likely to remain an indicator of their success. CIOs will always need to satisfy the business’s stakeholders by growing the portfolio placed in their control, but this will take place in an increasingly complex environment. In the future, companies that employ a CIO will be better placed to meet the challenges of new and emerging markets. The analytical power and innovations of a great CIO will ensure a business can grow and adapt, even in developing, unpredictable terrain.