Hospital CMIOs less satisfied despite pay bump

Even when pay is up, that doesn't mean satisfaction is, according to a new survey of chief medical information officers.

While CMIOs are making more money than they were a year ago, 43 percent reported being just somewhat satisfied with their jobs, AMDIS-Gartner found.

There were 120 CMIOs who participated in the survey and they reported an annual average pay of $326,000--up from the $318,000 average reported last year, CMIO reported.

"You are still satisfied, but 43 percent of you are somewhat satisfied," Vi Shaffer, research vice president and global industry services director for healthcare providers at Gartner, said at the recent Association of Medical Directors of Information Systems Physician-Computer Connection Symposium in Ojai, California. "In the early years of the study, more than 50 percent of you were very satisfied. This is a change and a challenge."

The pay bump is a deviation from how things were just a couple years ago. In 2012, CMIOs earned, on average, between $200,000 and $300,000, according to CMIO's compensation survey that year.

A survey published last summer by St. Petersburg, Florida-based healthcare recruiting firm SSi-Search found that hospital CIO compensation had not grown despite an increase in responsibilities since the passage of the HITECH Act in 2009.

That growing workload for CMIOs and CIOs could be adding to job dissatisfaction. Healthcare CIOs' workloads have ballooned in scope and complexity over the past five years, according to an April whitepaper from SSI-Search.

For this year's CMIO survey, 50 percent of CMIOs also said they felt less successful. Shaffer, according to CMIO, said that might be tied to them moving into a role where they are managing the impact technology has on "value," making them accountable for business results.

Still, despite the drop in job satisfaction--and the up and downs in pay over the past few years--two-thirds of the respondents to the AMDIS-Gartner survey said they wanted to remain CMIOs, rather than advance to a different executive position.

To learn more:
- read the CMIO article