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State Department Recruiting for Chief Information Officer

Responsibilities of the position include setting objectives and goals and establishing workload priorities; securing equipment and training as needed by staff; and establishing performance metrics, workload tracking and other measures to inform the decision-making process.

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A major department in state government is recruiting for a strategic leader to oversee its technology.

The California Department of Social Services (CDSS) is seeking a chief information officer (Career Executive Assignment) to provide “IT vision, strategic planning, leadership, goal setting, policy development, direction and oversight of enterprise architecture, project management, information security and infrastructure and application services to meet the business needs of the California Department of Social Services (CDSS),” the job posting says.

“This is one of the largest, most impactful IT roles in all of state government!” says a LinkedIn post by Adam Dondro, agency chief information officer for the California Health and Human Services Agency, CDSS’ parent organization. “This is your chance to be at the center of it all!”

The CIO reports to the department’s chief operating officer. Six people report to the CIO, and 246 are under his or her area of responsibility. Desirable qualifications for the position, according to the duty statement, include:

  • Deep understanding and breadth of experience with the full scope of IT domains, current and emerging technologies, and how they may be applied to the enterprise to support business.
  • Exceptional leadership skills and experience managing multidisciplinary teams, developing and communicating a clear vision that inspires and motivates staff, encouraging initiative at all levels, and promoting an environment of equity for the workforce.
  • Demonstrated ability to think analytically, set goals, developing and executing strategic planning for IT, and working in collaboration with organizational leaders to facilitate IT decision-making and priority-setting.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills, including the ability to explain digital concepts and technologies to business leaders, and business concepts to the IT workforce.

The duty statement breaks down the responsibilities of this position, which include:

  • Provide leadership in the executive oversight of department policy and projects. Direct the process for the department’s strategic plan and executive IT governing process. Oversee IT operations, infrastructure development, security, maintenance, procurement and support (30 percent).
  • Provide advice and guidance to the department’s directorate on sponsorship of large state/county IT projects such as the child-care data landscape, Facilities Management System, Child Welfare Services - CARES system, State Automated Welfare System, etc. (20 percent).
  • Plan, organize and direct the communications between CDSS and the CHHS Agency Information Office and the Office of Systems Integration on IT policy. Represent the department in negotiations through various governing councils across state government.
  • Set objectives and goals and establish workload priorities; secure equipment and training as needed by staff; and establish performance metrics, workload tracking and other measures to inform the decision-making process.
  • Meet and confer with state and county organizational representatives and technical staff on policy issues, and with vendors on project development and implementation issues.

The position has a monthly salary range of $7,781 to $18,850, and the application deadline is Nov. 5.
Dennis Noone is Managing Editor of Techwire. He is a career journalist, having worked as a reporter and editor at small-town newspapers and major metropolitan dailies in California, Nevada, Texas and Virginia, including as an editor with USA Today in Washington, D.C. He lives in the Northern California foothills.