Harris Search Associates is a leading national firm in the field of higher education information technology searches and have successfully conducted over 900 search assignments on behalf of the foremost research and comprehensive universities, research parks, academic medical centers, hospital systems, and organizations driving global innovation.
Each year we conduct a number of senior information technology searches for a variety of institutions. We have witnessed a stark change in the necessary requirements/skill set of the modern higher education Chief Information Officer/Vice President for Information Technology. When we launched our practice over 20 years ago, the Chief Information Officer in higher education was largely responsible to ensure operational stability of systems, continuity of service, and primarily focused on the technical nature of architecture of the administrative computing systems in order to “keep the trains running on time” across campus.
Today, the higher education Chief Information Officer must be a strategic partner, a dynamic talent developer, and superb communicator. And perhaps, the greatest skill set the higher education Chief Information Officer must bring is an ability to lead an enterprise that manages an environment of expectations amongst a series of what appear as contradictions.
Information Technology services on campus is simultaneously expected to provide uninterrupted access to all stakeholders, while at the same time ensuring the utmost security, support the academic mission with systems to aid teaching and learning, while providing the critical infrastructure to ensure the administrative computing needs of the institution, and increasingly in a cost-efficient manner. And, of course as the changing expectations of students on campus evolves, compatibility of multiple devices, with instantaneous campus-wide availability will continue to challenge the next generation of higher education Chief Information Officers.
Now, when we recruit the higher education Chief Information Officer/Senior Information Technology leader, we must attract an outstanding, enterprise-level leader who will be inextricably linked to the strategic operations of an institution.
And, we continue to track the next generation of emerging talent. As such, we are known and trusted by the national information technology leaders search committees hope to attract. This is then complemented by an active research and recruitment strategy to ensure a robust, diverse candidate pool is presented for review, and the assignment is successfully completed efficiently.