50 Shades of CxO
Before we answer this, we need to know another term — corporate title. A corporate title or a business title is one that’s given to organization and company officials to show what duties and responsibilities they have in companies like internet giants, small businesses, manufacturing companies, and even in a UK casino or variety of free roulette games. You can also find corporate titles in many non-profit organizations, educational institutions, sole proprietorships, and partnerships.
These titles are given to a company’s most important senior executives, those members that work together to ensure a company stays true its preset plans and policies. The titles, usually starting with the letter C for “Chief” and ending with the letter O for “Officer” are grouped together as C-suite or C-level executives. And since, today, there are so many variations of the C-level titles, they’re collectively referred to as CxOs.
Which CxO Titles Are There?
Chief Accounting Officer (CAO)
CAO, Chief Accounting Officer, is an increasingly popular title across the finance industry. The CAO is responsible for overseeing all accounting functions such as ledger accounts, financial statements, and cost control systems.
Chief Analytics Officer (CAO)
Chief analytics officer is a job title for the senior manager responsible for the analysis of data within an organization, such as a listed company or an educational institution. The CAO often reports to the chief executive officer.
Chief Artificial Intelligence Officer (CAIO)
Chief Artificial Intelligence Officer (CAIO) must be somebody who has an inside and out information of the AI domain and is updated with the most recent patterns. That isn't all, he/she should likewise have the option to settle on some of the critical decisions regarding execution, budget, and final product.
Chief Audit Officer (CAO)
Chief Audit Officer (CAO), director of audit, director of internal audit, auditor general, or controller general is a high-level independent corporate executive with overall responsibility for internal audit. Publicly traded corporations typically have an internal audit department, led by a Chief Audit Officer (CAO) who reports functionally to the audit committee of the board of directors, with administrative reporting to the chief executive officer.
Chief Caring Officer (CCO)
The Chief Caring Officer (CCO) champions the cause and benefits of empathy to both employees and customers of a corporate enterprise. The CCO is the conscience of the company with effective powers to make things happen to prove true care. The CCO also deploys their empathetic perspective to identify emergent grassroots innovations having radical consequences for the future direction of the company. Preferably, The CCO is also the CEO!
Chief Content officer (CCO)
A chief content officer (CCO) is a corporate executive responsible for the digital media creation and multi-channel publication of the organization's content (text, video, audio, animation, etc.). The CCO is usually an executive role or senior vice president position, typically reporting to the chief executive officer or the president of the organization. In a broadcasting organisation, the CCO is generally the highest ranking creative member of the organization. However, the chief content officer position is also common in many other industries, ranging from insurance to video production based on a LinkedIn study.
Chief Commercial Officer (CCO)
The chief commercial officer (CCO) (sometime referred to as the chief business officer) is an executive-level role, with the holder being responsible for the commercial strategy and the development of an organization. It typically involves activities relating to marketing, sales, product development and customer service to drive business growth and market share. As a corporate officer position, the CCO generally reports directly to the chief executive officer (CEO) and is primarily concerned with ensuring the integrated commercial success of an organization. The role typically must combine technical knowledge of the relevant field with strong marketing and business development skills. Essentially, a CCO takes ownership of the customer and the customer interface with the product or service offering, making sure that all functions of the organization are aligned to meet its strategic commercial objectives. This means that they are closely linked to the organization's strategic management function, in drafting, implementing and evaluating cross-functional decisions that will enable an organization to achieve its long-term objectives.
Chief Competition Officer (CCO)
The chief commercial officer is an executive-level role, with the holder being responsible for the commercial strategy and the development of an organization. It typically involves activities relating to marketing, sales, product development and customer service to drive business growth and market share.
Chief Compliance Officer (CCO)
The chief compliance officer (CCO) of a company is the officer primarily responsible for overseeing and managing regulatory compliance issues within an organization. The CCO typically reports to the chief executive officer. The role has long existed at companies that operate in heavily regulated industries such as financial services and healthcare. For other companies, the rash of 2000s accounting scandals, the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, and the recommendations of the U.S. Federal Sentencing Guidelines have led to additional CCO appointments.
Chief Coordination Officer (CCO)
Chief Customer Officer (CCO)
A chief customer officer (CCO) is the executive responsible in customer-centric companies for the total relationship with an organization’s customers. This position was developed to provide a single vision across all methods of customer contact. The CCO is often responsible for influencing corporate activities of customer relations in the call centre, sales, marketing, user interface, finance (billing), fulfillment and post-sale support. The CCO typically reports to the chief executive officer, and is potentially a member of the board of directors.
Chief Customer Service Officer (CCSO)
Chief Cyborg Officer (CCYO)
The word cyborg comes from cyber – i.e. digital – and organic. In science fiction films, a cyborg is a person who has been upgraded using digital technology. The title Chief Cyborg Officer was a spontaneous idea by our CEO Pieter Haas after I’d had the implant inserted into my hand on stage. After all, I’d just been more or less upgraded, too!
Chief Data Officer (CDO)
A chief data officer (CDO) is a corporate officer responsible for enterprise-wide governance and utilization of information as an asset, via data processing, analysis, data mining, information trading and other means. CDOs usually report to the chief executive officer (CEO), although depending on the area of expertise this can vary. The CDO is a member of the executive management team and manager of enterprise-wide data processing and data mining.
Chief Digital Officer (CDO)
A chief digital officer (CDO) or a chief digital information officer (CDIO) is an individual who helps a company, a government organization or a city drive growth by converting traditional "analog" businesses to digital ones using the potential of modern online technologies and data (i.e., digital transformation ), and at times oversees operations in the rapidly changing digital sectors like mobile applications, social media and related applications, virtual goods, as well as web-based information management and marketing.
Chief Entertainment Officer (CEO)
Chief Equation Officer (CEO)
Chief Ethics Officer (CEO)
The Chief Ethics Officer (EO) is a senior ranking individual in an organization. The primary role is to build a strong ethical culture within the organization. In order to perform these responsibilities the chief ethics officer must be given support, independence, and opportunity to influence key decision-making board members. The chief ethics officer normally reports to the chief executive officer, and have some access to the board of directors.
Chief Executive Officer (CEO)
A chief executive officer (CEO), or just chief executive (CE), is the most senior corporate, executive, or administrative officer in charge of managing an organization – especially an independent legal entity such as a company or nonprofit institution. CEOs lead a range of organizations, including public and private corporations, non-profit organizations and even some government organizations (notably Crown corporations). The CEO of a corporation or company typically reports to the board of directors and is charged with maximizing the value of the entity, which may include maximizing the share price, market share, revenues or another element. In the non-profit and government sector, CEOs typically aim at achieving outcomes related to the organization's mission, such as reducing poverty, increasing literacy, etc.
Chief Financial Officer (CFO)
The chief financial officer (CFO) is officer of a company that has primary responsibility for managing the company's finances, including financial planning, management of financial risks, record-keeping, and financial reporting. In some sectors, the CFO is also responsible for analysis of data. Some CFOs have the title CFOO for chief financial and operating officer. In the United Kingdom, the typical term for a CFO is finance director (FD). The CFO typically reports to the chief executive officer (CEO) and the board of directors and may additionally have a seat on the board. The CFO supervises the finance unit and is the chief financial spokesperson for the organization. The CFO directly assists the chief operating officer (COO) on all strategic and tactical matters relating to budget management, cost–benefit analysis, forecasting needs, and securing of new funding.
Chief Future Officer (CFO)
Chief Gender Equality Officer (CGEO)
Chief Green Officer (CGO)
Chief Growth Officer (CGO)
A Chief Growth Officer (CGO) has the unique ability to work across the key activity areas that drive growth. In large companies, the CGO is a cross-functional catalyst used by executives to align and optimize their own team's activities. Marketing teams work on demand generation loading the sales funnel with prospects.
Chief Happiness Officer (CHO)
The Chief Happiness Officer in a company is the manager of workers' happiness. Probably originating in North America, CHO posts are being created in European and UK companies to ensure workers' welfare needs are met.
Chief Heart Officer (CHO)
Chief Home Officer (CHO)
Chief Human Resource Officer (CHRO)
A chief human resources officer (CHRO) or chief people officer (CPO) is a corporate officer who oversees all aspects of human resource management and industrial relations policies, practices and operations for an organization. Similar job titles include: chief people officer, chief personnel officer, executive vice president of human resources and senior vice president of human resources. Roles and responsibilities of a typical CHRO can be categorized as follows: workforce strategist, organizational and performance conductor, HR service delivery owner, compliance and governance regulator, and coach and adviser to the senior leadership team and the board of directors. CHROs may also be involved in board member selection and orientation, executive compensation, and succession planning. In addition, functions such as communications, facilities, public relations and related areas may fall within the scope of the CHRO role. Increasingly, CHROs report directly to chief executive officers and are members of the most senior-level committees of a company (e.g., executive committee or office of the CEO).
Chief Information Officer (CIO)
Chief information officer (CIO), chief digital information officer (CDIO) or information technology (IT) director, is a job title commonly given to the most senior executive in an enterprise who works with information technology and computer systems, in order to support enterprise goals. Typically, the CIO reports directly to the chief executive officer, but may also report to the chief operating officer or chief financial officer. In military organisations, the CIO reports to the commanding officer. The role of chief information officer was first defined in 1981 by William R. Synnott, former senior vice president of the Bank of Boston, and William H. Gruber, a former professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Sloan School of Management. A CIO will sometimes serve as a member of the board of directors.
Chief Information Security Officer (CISO)
A chief information security officer (CISO) is the senior-level executive within an organization responsible for establishing and maintaining the enterprise vision, strategy, and program to ensure information assets and technologies are adequately protected. The CISO directs staff in identifying, developing, implementing, and maintaining processes across the enterprise to reduce information and information technology (IT) risks. They respond to incidents, establish appropriate standards and controls, manage security technologies, and direct the establishment and implementation of policies and procedures. The CISO is also usually responsible for information-related compliance (e.g. supervises the implementation to achieve ISO/IEC 27001 certification for an entity or a part of it).
Chief Innovation Officer (CIO)
A chief innovation officer (CINO) or chief technology innovation officer (CTIO) is a person in a company who is primarily responsible for managing the process of innovation and change management in an organization, as well as being in some cases the person who "originates new ideas but also recognizes innovative ideas generated by other people". The CINO also manages Technological change.
Chief Investment Officer (CIO)
The chief investment officer (CIO) is a job title for the board level head of investments within an organization. The CIO's purpose is to understand, manage, and monitor their organization's portfolio of assets, devise strategies for growth, act as the liaison with investors, and recognize and avoid serious risks, including those never before encountered.
Chief Knowledge Officer (CKO)
A chief knowledge officer (CKO) is a loosely defined role in some organizations that achieved some prominence during the 1990s and 2000s that supervises knowledge management. In general, their duties involve intellectual capital and organizing preservation and distribution of knowledge in an organization. The position sometimes overlaps with the title of "chief information officer"; CIOs tend to be more focused on information technology within an organization (computer systems and the like), while CKOs have more nebulous portfolios including matters such as overseeing patent applications, internal training and documentation, knowledge sharing, and promoting innovative research. CKOs are frequently directly appointed by the CEO given their broad domains, since their responsibilities generally cut across organizational boundaries. As a result, exactly what a CKO works on can vary greatly from organization to organization. By the 2010s, the role became less common; while knowledge management programs are still an important part of corporations and other organizations, a direct officer called Chief Knowledge Officer has fallen out of favor somewhat.
Chief Legal Officer (CLO)
A chief legal officer (CLO) is often a publicly-traded company's most powerful legal executive. The chief legal officer (CLO) is an expert and leader who helps the company minimize its legal risks by advising the company's other officers and board members on any major legal and regulatory issues the company confronts, such as litigation risks. The CLO may also be a member of the company's operating committee and is overseen by the CEO. The CLO oversees the company's in-house attorneys.
Chief Marketing Officer (CMO)
A chief marketing officer (CMO), also called a global marketing officer or marketing director, is a corporate executive responsible for marketing activities in an organization. Whilst historically these titles may have signified a legal responsibility, for example at Companies House in the UK, the titles are less strict/formal in the 21st Century and allow companies to acknowledge the evolving and increasingly significant role that marketers can play in an organisation, not least because of the inherent character of successful marketers. The CMO leads brand management, marketing communications (including advertising, promotions and public relations), market research, product marketing, distribution channel management, pricing, and customer service. The CMO is a member of the C-suite and typically reports to the chief executive officer. A number of senior vice presidents, vice presidents, directors, and other senior marketing managers responsible for various parts of the marketing strategy may report directly to the CMO.The chief marketing officer has traditionally been a full-time, in-house position. However, in recent years there has been an emergence of the part-time CMO or Fractional CMO.
Chief Medical Officer (CMO)
Chief medical officer (CMO) is the title used in many countries for the senior government official designated head of medical services, sometimes at the national level. The post is held by a physician who serves to advise and lead a team of medical experts on matters of public health importance.
Chief Negotiation Officer (CNO)
Chief Operating Officer (COO)
A chief operating officer (COO), also called a chief operations officer, is one of the highest-ranking executive positions in an organization, comprising part of the "C-suite". The COO is usually the second-in-command at the firm, especially if the highest-ranking executive is the chairman and CEO. The COO is responsible for the daily operation of the company and routinely reports to the highest-ranking executive—usually the chief executive officer (CEO).
Chief Process Officer (CPO)
A chief process officer (CPO) is an executive responsible for business process management at the highest level of an organization. CPOs usually report directly to the CEO or board of directors. They oversee business process activities and are responsible for defining rules, policies, and guidelines to ensure that the main objectives follow the company strategy as well as establishing control mechanisms. The CPO defines the process management strategy and related objectives for the company; develops, documents, and introduces the process model; and monitors process compliance.
Chief Procurement Officer (CPO)
A chief procurement officer (CPO) is an executive role focused on sourcing, procurement, and supply management for an enterprise. Globalization, compliance pressures, supply market risk and procurement automation have simultaneously elevated the visibility of the procurement discipline within companies and increased supply management challenges. In response, procurement executives have established agendas for organizational transformation. These plans incorporate activities to bring more spending under management, enhance the procurement organization's skills and visibility, and increase both internal and external collaboration. A chief procurement officer (CPO) typically is the executive of a corporation who is responsible for the management, administration, and supervision of the company's acquisition programs. They may be in charge of the contracting services and may manage the purchase of supplies, equipment, and materials. It often is his or her responsibility to source goods and services and to negotiate prices and contracts.
Chief Product Officer (CPO)
A Chief Product Officer (CPO), sometimes known as Head of Product, is a corporate title referring to an executive responsible for various product-related activities in an organization. The CPO is to the business's product what the CTO is to technology. They focus on bringing the product strategy to align with the business strategy and to deploy that throughout the organization. They are most common in technology companies, or organizations where technology is now a large part of the way they serve customers (think banks and newspapers).
Chief Quality Officer (CQO)
Chief quality officers ensure that their organization’s products and services meet the highest standards. This requires gathering data to determine the quality of their organization’s products and services. For chief quality officers in health care settings, the data must demonstrate the delivery of high-quality health care for providers to receive reimbursements and for facilities to secure good reputations. Chief quality officers also must address quality problems such as misdiagnoses, readmissions, and hospital-acquired conditions (HACs). Additionally, chief quality officers collect customer feedback that offers insight into the performance of their organizations’ products and services. In a health care setting, surveys are conducted with patients about their experiences and state of health. Chief quality officers use various analytical strategies to ensure that providers deliver quality health care. They analyze new methodologies that may positively impact nursing performance, patient safety, and employee satisfaction—all of which contribute to quality health care. They also examine processes, and make suggestions for improvement. Additionally, when organizing quality improvement initiatives, chief quality officers consider how to integrate new refined processes, collect feedback, and create reporting systems that facilitate clear communication between clinicians. Chief quality officers must know how to develop a culture that promotes accountability and transparency and create an infrastructure that uses data to drive decision-making. To execute these duties in health care settings, they must possess in-depth clinical knowledge and understand the clinical implications of the infrastructures they create. This clinical knowledge also enables them to understand what impedes workflow processes. In addition, it influences the way physicians and other clinicians view them.
Chief Research & Development Officer (CRDO)
The Chief Research & Development Officer (CRDO), research officer, or research director, is a job title commonly given to the most senior executive in an enterprise responsible for the research that supports enterprise goals. Generally, the CRDO reports to the chief executive officer. In educational organizations, they report to the chancellor or president.
Chief Revenue Officer (CRO)
A chief revenue officer (CRO) is a corporate officer (executive) responsible for all revenue generation processes in an organization. In this role, a CRO is accountable for driving better integration and alignment between all revenue-related functions, including marketing, sales, customer support, pricing, and revenue management.
Chief Risk Officer (CRO)
The chief risk officer (CRO) or chief risk management officer (CRMO) of a firm or corporation is the executive accountable for enabling the efficient and effective governance of significant risks, and related opportunities, to a business and its various segments. Risks are commonly categorized as strategic, reputational, operational, financial, or compliance-related. CROs are accountable to the Executive Committee and The Board for enabling the business to balance risk and reward. In more complex organizations, they are generally responsible for coordinating the organization's Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) approach. The CRO is responsible for assessing and mitigating significant competitive, regulatory, and technological threats to a firm's capital and earnings. The CRO roles and responsibilities vary depending on the size of the organization and industry. The CRO works to ensure that the firm is compliant with government regulations, such as Sarbanes-Oxley, and reviews factors that could negatively affect investments. Typically, the CRO is responsible for the firm's risk management operations, including managing, identifying, evaluating, reporting and overseeing the firm's risks externally and internally to the organization and works diligently with senior management such as Chief Executive officer and Chief Financial Officer. The role of the Chief Risk Officer (CRO) is becoming increasing important in financial, investment, and insurance sectors. According to Watson, the majority of CROs agreed that having only exceptional analytical skill is not sufficient. The most successful CROs are able to combine these skills with highly developed commercial, strategic, leadership and communication skill to be able to drive change and make a difference in an organization. CROs typically have post graduate education with over 20 years of experience in accounting, economics, legal or actuarial backgrounds. A business may find a risk acceptable; however, the company as a whole may not. CROs need to balance risks with financial, investment, insurance, personnel and inventory decisions to obtain an optimum level for stakeholders. According to a study by Morgan McKinley, a successful CRO must be able to deal with complexity and ambiguity, and understand the bigger picture.
Chief Sales Officer (CSO)
The Chief Sales Officer is a high-level executive in the business. He is in charge of the management of the entire sales department, overseeing all sales-related activities. The Chief Sales Officer’s daily activities are vast and include overseeing the day-to-day creation of sales strategies. He studies sales numbers in order to assess how successful sales strategies are in the business. The Chief Sales Officer answers directly to the business stakeholders. He provides leadership, direction, and resources to the sales department and is accountable for the overall sales department performance, the achievement of sales department goals and targets, and the alignment of the business’s strategy. The Chief Sales Officer is also charged with ensuring sustainable revenue growth by constantly maximizing market penetration.
Chief Security Officer (CSO)
A chief security officer (CSO) is an organization's most senior executive accountable for the development and oversight of policies and programs intended for the mitigation and/or reduction of compliance, operational, strategic, financial and reputational security risk strategies relating to the protection of people, intellectual assets and tangible property.
Chief Service Officer (CSO)
The chief services officer (CSO) is a position at the head of a firm carrying significant service design responsibilities. The CSO typically is responsible for developing processes and tools, both internally and externally, for producing maximum value to all stakeholders with intelligent and efficient use of potentially fluctuating human resources. In some organizations, the same person may hold this title along with that of chief operations officer (COO) as they both are same level roles. Alternatively, a company could have one or the other, or both occupied by separate people. Often, a CSO exists in heavily client-focussed companies, while a COO exists in product development focused companies. A CSO almost always has a strong operations background and advanced degree, whereas a COO often has a background in business development. Both CSO and COO report to the CEO or managing director of a company.
Chief Sustainability Officer (CSO)
The chief sustainability officer, sometimes known by other titles, is the corporate title of an executive position within a corporation that is in charge of the corporation's "environmental" programmes. Several companies have created such environmental manager positions in the 21st century to formalize their commitment to the environment. Normally these responsibilities rest with the facility manager, who has provided cost effective resource and environmental control as part of the basic services necessary for the company to function. However, as sustainability initiatives have expanded beyond the facility — so has the importance of the position to what is now a C-level executive role.
Chief Technology Officer (CTO)
A chief technology officer (CTO), sometimes known as a chief technical officer or chief technologist, is an executive-level position in a company or other entity whose occupation is focused on the scientific and technological issues within an organization. A CTO is very similar to a chief information officer (CIO). CTOs will make decisions for the overarching technology infrastructure that closely align with the organization's goals, while CIOs work alongside the organization's IT staff members to perform everyday operations. A CTO should be aware of new and existing technologies to guide the company's future endeavors. The attributes of the roles a CTO holds vary from one company to the next, mainly depending on their organizational structure.