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Take A Digital Health Check

Have you ever wondered how digitally healthy the organization where you work at really is? If you’re a freelancer or work at an agency, well, have you thought about the health of your clients?

By Paul Boag

I’m not talking about whether you have the latest mobile application or a responsive website. I’m talking about the organization that sits behind these digital tools. If the organization is not digitally healthy, then even the best technology and design will fail. As digital professionals, we like to complain that the organizations with which we work are a hindrance. But are they? Exactly how digitally-friendly are the companies we work for?

Before I help a client go through the process of digital transformation, I need to understand where the problems lie. I do this using a digital health check. Below is an outline of the areas that I investigate, the questions I ask and what those questions reveal. My hope is that this health check will help you better understand the organizations with which you work.

How Digitally Friendly Is The Organization’s Structure?

An organization needs to cross many disciplines in order to manage digital. Digital is not just an IT or communications tool. It requires designers, developers, content writers, marketers, project managers, data specialists and other experts. All must work together.

Unfortunately in many organizations, departmental structure gets in the way. Specialists work within their own silos, limiting collaboration. Departments often compete for limited resources, and relationships are tense.

To see whether this is true of your organization, ask some of the following questions:

  • How do the individuals who work with digital operate? Whom do they report to?
  • Who manages the key digital assets, like email, social media, the website, the intranet, etc.?
  • How is digital overseen? Is there a steering group or does everyone report to their respective department?
  • Do specialists come together in working groups to work on particular projects?
  • Is there a good working relationship between marketing and IT?

If the answers show only limited cooperation, then you will find the use of digital to be a challenge.

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Posted on June 24, 2014, under Marketing/Social

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