by Meridith Levinson

5 Reasons Why a Developer Might Want to Become a CIO

Jul 31, 20083 mins

The CIO job comes with lots of money and lots of perks. But would a software developer ever be willing to cash in his integrity and passion for programming to become a corporate wonk? Here are five compelling reasons why developers might do so.

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Credit: Illus_man/Shutterstock

1. It’s all about the benjamins, baby.

Have you seen the money these cats make? Top information technology executives earn millions of dollars. And it’s not just the cash CIOs pocket, it’s the perks they get, too. Home security system to protect all their loot? Check. Personal use of the corporate jet? Check. Financial planner to funnel all that dough into off-shore, tax-free accounts? Check.

2. It’s good to be king.

Like Tom Petty and Jackie Mason say, “It’s good to be king.” As a CIO, you have control over the fate of an entire department. You control the priorities, salaries and indeed the future of everyone on your staff. If you want to make them come into the office on the weekend to work on their TPS reports, you can. You can also make software vendors laugh or cry with a flourish of your pen. You can spend a day on the links and call it business. And if you want to frolic in Las Vegas for a weekend, you don’t have to ask anyone for permission. You just tell them you’re attending a conference. Because what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.

3. You don’t have to worry about your job getting outsourced.

Have you ever heard of a CIO’s job getting shipped off to India? Either have we. CIOs are too busy managing their outsourcing contracts with Tata and IBM to worry about their positions being in jeopardy. Software developers, on the other hand, always have to worry about the axe-man hefting the hatchet over their heads.

4. Golden parachutes to the rescue.

On the off chance a company decides to part ways with its CIO, the CIO is all but guaranteed a soft landing due to the employment contract his lawyer inked for him when he joined the company. While software developers are lucky if they get a measly six weeks severance, the CIO usually skips away with a minimum of six months severance, health insurance and all vested stock options.

5. Quit bugging me.

Even software developers tire of fixing bugs. Some days, they’d much rather be the person creating all the problems than the poor slob who has to clean them up.