What Is a CTO Salary?

A Chief Technology Officer (CTO) is responsible for tech, teams and suppliers. They drive innovation and efficiency across the business.

What is the salary for CTOs in the US?

Surveys by recruitment companies indicate a CTO salary as high as $280,000 per year.

A CTO salary will vary by experience. Where they work also has an effect. CTO salaries in the Northeast tend to be higher, but CTOs can earn excellent salaries in other cities across the US.

With all these factors – experience, geography, the quality of the candidate and the needs of the business – it can be complicated to assess a CTO’s salary.

How to determine a CTO salary?

Assessing where a CTO should fit in this range can be complicated. We simplify it by using three key factors:

1. Does the CTO look to the horizon—to market leaders and emerging technology—in order to bring innovation and new ideas to the business? Are they genuine leaders in digital, custom
software, and identifying market opportunities? Do they continually learn and ensure they are at the top of their game?

2. Do they take a leading role in improving efficiency, effectiveness, and driving business value? Do they create new starting points and innovations to open the door to new business strategies? Or is their job to simply meet the agenda set by more senior leaders?

3. Finally, do they take broad ownership for delivering change? For example, does the CTO facilitate discussions with other leaders within the organization and potentially outside? Do they work as equals with other leaders to meet overall objectives? Are they credible and knowledgeable when dealing with investors and other external stakeholders?

Overall, the CTO is an extremely important position that can have a huge impact on a business. The CTO’s salary needs to reflect that. (For more information about the role itself, see our article, What is the meaning of “CTO”?)

We interview, screen, select and develop more executive-level IT leaders than any other organization. We’re always happy to discuss the recruitment process or any other IT challenges or opportunities.

Why Freeman Clarke?

Freeman Clarke CTOs work on a “fractional,” or part-time model. This provides a business with first-class tech leadership without the full-time cost.

Our fractional CTOs are uniquely suited to mid-market businesses. They have outstanding technical expertise. They are strategic thinkers. They understand how to use tech to drive growth. But they are also suited to the culture and reality of mid-market business.

Whatever the remit, our CTOs operate from the fundamental idea of linking a business’s systems and digital strategy to business objectives. This should be the goal of every innovative company, because when the two disciplines are connected, we see real, sustainable growth.

Visit our Chief Technology Officers (CTOs) Knowledge Centre which includes all content related to this topic.

To find out more about how we could add value to your business, Contact Us and we’ll be in touch for an informal conversation.