Despite being under more pressure than ever, many hospital and health system CIOs saw minimal salary increases in 2012, according to the CHIME CIO Compensation Survey, which found that having multiple roles may be the key to a bigger pay bump.
In its research — which included responses from 263 members — CHIME found that most CIOs received minimal salary increases over what they were paid in 2011, with 44 percent receiving either no increase or less than a 3 percent raise. Overall, the majority (74 percent) of CIOs received less than a 5 percent increase in salary.
“While CIOs are taking on increasing responsibility to implement systems that are mission-critical, salary increases have been modest as healthcare organizations adjust to tighter reimbursement for care and rising costs in a number of areas,” said Gary Barnes, CIO at Medical Center Health System in Odessa, Texas.
According to CHIME, healthcare CIOs earned an average base salary of $208,417 in 2012. This figure, however, varied widely based on several factors, including size and type of organization, title held by the respondent, and reporting relationships.
Not surprisingly, CIOs with dual titles in their organizations reported higher salaries. For example, 37 percent of respondents with a CIO-only title averaged a base salary of $199,890, while those carrying the title of CIO and vice president (28 percent) averaged $206,788, and those with CIO and executive vice president titles (11 percent) averaged $310,326.
Reporting structure also had an impact on IT executive base salary levels. Nearly half (44 percent) respondents reporting to the CEO earned an average base salary of $217,170, compared to an average of $175,263 among those reporting to their CFOs.
“As CIOs take on high-profile projects that affect the delivery of care and improved charge capture, they are gaining more attention from senior executives,” said Linda Hodges, senior vice president at Witt/Kieffer and a former member of CHIME’s board of trustees. “Reporting relationships often take a while to change in healthcare organizations, but the CIO’s role in achieving strategic initiatives is significant at most hospitals now.”
Other findings from the survey include:
- CIOs at smaller facilities earn significantly less than those at larger health organizations. Respondents from critical access hospitals (with fewer than 25 beds) reported base salaries that were $80,000 less than the average for all respondents. Base salaries earned by CIOs working at hospitals with fewer than 200 beds were 34 percent less than those who reported they were working at organizations with 200 to 399 beds.
- CIOs (58 percent) with master’s degrees earn about 10 percent more than those with bachelor’s degrees (33 percent).
- Some 75 percent of CIOs receive some kind of bonus payment or benefit in addition to their base salary.
- In general, respondents’ base salaries were not determined through negotiation. Some 86 percent said their salary was determined by someone else in their organization.
To access the CHIME report, click here.