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What is CTO a as a Service and Why it is Good for Startups?

A severely competitive environment makes it extremely important to keep up with the latest tech updates, especially for startups. Technology in the sense of materials and processes can become a magic wand able to transform startups and build tech innovations into their strategies and operating models to have greater business success. In this article, we are going to discuss the role of the Chief Technology Officer (CTO) as a service for startup and discuss all the key points related.

What is CTO as a service? (CaaS)

Understanding technology is now a core skill required of every business leader.

Richard Dobbs, James Manyika, and Jonathan Woetzel.

Sometimes it may be difficult for startups to transform business ideas into an efficient tech solution managing all technical and business responsibilities. And here arises the need to find and benefit from a service, helping to transform the current business vision into an efficient tech solution. CTO as a service (CaaS) is a tech support or consulting service performed by an executive technology officer helping companies meet their tech requirements and coordinate research and development.

A CTO – Chief Technology Officer, is one of the most important C-suite positions. It is a person responsible for the management of the technical team, choice of the most efficient development strategies, and control of the process so that the final product will fully satisfy the end customer’s needs.

CTO specializes in specific industry domains, and he looks at a project from a developer’s perspective, can see the strong and weak sides of the project, and knows how to increase performance and make the final product user-friendly, properly organize the development team and prioritize tasks.

The main orientation points for a CTO are external customers, technology, industry market trends, and product engineering.

Types of CTO’s

According to Gartner, exist the following main types of CTO’s:

A CTO acts like a tech evangelist, being a significant person who drives the digital transformation of the company.

McKinsey research comprises a bit different classification:

Each type of CTO can be successful, however, it is necessary to identify which one will work best within a particular company.

When do you need CTO services?

  • You have a great idea in mind, but feel a lack of tech expertise;
  • Have doubts whether the chosen tech stack is suitable;
  • You need a product audit;
  • Have an MVP and need to gain the trust of investors;
  • You are a startup at a scaling process stage;
  • You face difficulties with the internal infrastructure;
  • Want to integrate the latest technology and need technical guidance.

Why are CTO services so popular?

CaaS are a great option for companies striving to rapidly and efficiently improve their product design processes and enhance the development team performance. Nowadays, CEOs and founders have to deal with many aspects of business development that are out of their capacities. The main benefit of a CTO as a service is that it is a more cost-efficient option than an in-house CTO at the same time possessing all the necessary technical skills.

Benefits of CTO consulting:

What does a CTO do in a startup company?

Usually, Chief Technology Officer has a deep understanding of your tech requirements and is familiar with the pains you are struggling with. They can create a cost-efficient and scalable software product which could be easily modified in the future.

If your business tech team is growing, you need a person to be responsible for all tech aspects of the project as well as the building of the core project team. And a CTO will be the one having the right project vision based on the technical approach.

CTO service is a great solution for startups since usually, you do not need to hire a full-time CTO, you may simply hire an external CTO, and it will be more than enough for a startup at the very beginning when budgeting is tightly planned.

It will also allow you to cut HR expenses.

What can CTO do for Startups?

  • Designs your product;
  • Architecture consulting;
  • Quality assurance and control;
  • Planning phase and fast prototyping;
  • Implementation of agile methodologies;
  • System failures prevention;
  • Strategic resource management;
  • Sets company goals and values;
  • Hires employees to build an efficient team;
  • Inspires trust among the team and stakeholders.

Main responsibilities of CTO

The main responsibility of the CTO is to handle the software development operations and drive a development team.

CTO works directly with the board(founder) and is always oriented toward the future and has a wide organizational vision having a strategic view on technology, architecture, development process, compliance, and quality assurance.

A chief technical officer needs to understand what a company aims to be in a 5-year prospective in terms of technology, he should balance strategic and operational tasks, and make sure the next deliverable is on time. He looks at a team from a strategic team point and is responsible for optimizing the agile development process and improving the automated testing.

Apart from that, the responsibilities of CTO consulting services include:


Quality assurance
Having complete knowledge of a product, the CTO is responsible for testing before the release.
Efficient team
Hiring engineers and other in-house or remote technical employees.
Cybersecurity and safety
Ensures the security of all confidential info, internal documents, etc.
Planning and management
Ensures that the whole development process flows in accordance with the plan.
Control of the architecture
He is responsible for application architecture up to date as it scales.
Overall communication
CTO is responsible for maintaining efficient communication between stakeholders and customers.
Bug fixing procedure
Product debugging also is a responsibility of CTO.

CTO business advisory services vs Lead Developer

It may happen that startups aiming to cut on a budget tend to have their Lead developer instead of a CTO. However, it is a losing strategy, since, the lead developer is responsible for current technical issues, and he solves the problems arising in the process, not being oriented toward the future. For startups, it could be an option only in the prototyping stages.

CTO will decrease the engagement when it comes to operational issues, however, has a global view on what the company is aiming to be in the future.

Lead developers want to code. Onboarding, guiding, and nurturing other devs distorts them from their original task, decreasing their productivity and demotivating them.

Creation of a  new product plan, choice of the right architecture, finding the best tech stack, guiding the team through maintenance of the developed product,  etc, are sometimes beyond the capabilities of founders with an exclusively business mindset. Thus CTO is the best person to help here. He ensures that business keeps up with the latest tech innovations.

CTO, in comparison to the lead developer, has always a better understanding of cost-efficiency, future integrations, trends, the tech maturity of a company, market direction, etc.

Will hiring of CTO pay off in the long run?

Even if hiring a CTO means additional expenses, he helps to cope with additional unpredicted costs, helps to make build or buy decisions, can identify the weak spots in architecture, and helps to improve the overall quality of your product.
An experienced CTO that has guided several startups through the whole path, can guide your company through the nuances of Lean startup methodology, and cloud technologies, and enhancing the general software principles. He is always focused on a value build and exit strategy. It will drive your startup to the next level.

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Find a reliable CTO

The majority of startups use CTO as a service as an expert to support software development and management of the project. By hiring a CTO you may cut up to 35% of project development expenses and be sure that the project is perfect from a technical side of a question.

The best way to find CTO service is to follow the guidelines below:

  • Shape your requirements about the CTO you want to hire
  • Find an expert working for a competitor, sometimes CTOs may look for better conditions or more interesting project
  • Use recommendations, and various platforms to find and hire the best CTO suitable for your project

Choose the best cooperation model suitable for you. As the practice shows, it is better to hire a remote CTO than an in-house employee, since as a startup you do not need to overpay. Outsourcing will allow you to stick to a limited budget and get the highest quality of service

CTO as a service for your Startups in one click!

Your company should plan from the first step to its entire development from the outset. With the help provided by CTO, startups can receive advice from experts in technology and architecture, professional management, development and design teams, operations coordination, and technical support.

Most startups hiring a CTO as an in-house specialist should understand that he will be a co-founder and would like to have from 30 to 40% of equity. Thus, it is wiser and more cost-efficient to rent a CTO or hire outsourced CTO services.

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How Altamira team can support your startup technologically?

Discovery phase

Our experts can help you with the discovery phase of your product development process, gather all the info about the project, conduct holistic research, and write technical documentation. It helps to shape your idea, mitigate the possible risks, optimize costs and plan the development processes and choose the best tech stack.

Project planning

Based on the information gained through the discovery stage, our experts look for ways to improve development processes, prioritize the features for MVP, enhance the architectural and technical decisions, and create the development roadmap.

Project scaling

Our team specializes in startup scaling, being aware of all the nuances and pitfalls that should be taken into account. We help to develop and grow fast and more sustainably than anyone else. Our experts will create a complete scaling strategy choosing the most cost and time-effective solution.

Project audit

Altamira specialists will conduct a project audit, evaluate the code quality and assess project quality and functionality. They will also monitor the delivery process, preparing a list of recommendations for improvements.

Quick solving of the technical issues

Our experts will provide efficient team management service and efficiently manage the arising issues. You will get a productive team able to quickly solve the arising issues and contribute to the project efficiency and overall sustainability.

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Why choose us?

Altamira team has extensive experience in the market helping startups to scale and grow fast offering the highest level of transparency and great price-quality ratio. Having rich cross-industry technical expertise we can efficiently work on your web or mobile product development guaranteeing the creation of feature-rich apps and impressive designs.

We will approach your project from a holistic perspective, taking into account all the nuances and building a project that could be easily scaled and enhanced with no need to rebuild the product from scratch.

According to the latest NPS, our clients would recommend us as a partner offering:

  • excellent price-quality ratio;
  • transparency of processes;
  • cross-industry expertise;
  • long-term cooperation with full commitment.
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To sum up

Creation of a  new product plan, choice of the right architecture, finding the best tech stack, guiding the team through maintenance of the developed product,  etc, are sometimes beyond the capabilities of founders with an exclusively business mindset. Thus CTO is the best person to help here. He ensures that business keeps up with the latest tech trends.

Advanced specialists offering CTO services that have guided several startups through the whole path, can guide your company through the nuances of Lean startup methodology, and cloud technologies, and enhance the general software principles. He is always focused on a value build and exit strategy.

Even if hiring a CTO means additional expenses, he helps to cope with additional unpredicted costs, helps to make build or buy decisions, can identify the weak spots in architecture, and helps to improve the overall quality of your product.

FAQ

Creation of a  new product plan, choice of  the right architecture, finding the best tech stack, guiding the team through maintenance of the developed product,  etc, are sometimes beyond the capabilities of founders with an exclusively business mindset. Thus CTO is the best person to help here
The main benefit of a CTO as a service is that it is more cost-efficient option than an in-house CTO at the same time possessing all the necessary technical skills.
Most startups hiring a CTO as in house specialist, should understand that he will be as a cou-founder and would like to have from 30 to 40% of equity. Thus, it is wiser and more cost-efficient to rent a CTO or hire outsourced CTO services.
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