Last week, this blog looked at the growing importance of IT to marketing departments. The piece cited a Gartner study that predicted chief marketing officers would have a larger IT budget than CIOs in the next five years. Naturally, that would create some friction between these two departments, but it may be worse than most people realize.
A recent Harvard Business Review article cites an Accenture Interactive survey which found that the relationship between the two parties could become dangerous for a company if it is not kept in check. The problem, according to the article, is that the two sides do not trust, understand or collaborate with each other.
"That is very bad news for their businesses and, not incidentally, for their own careers," the article reads. "When IT and marketing departments work at cross-purposes, the results are inefficiencies and mishaps and it is customers who suffer. Potential buyers simply don't have the time or energy to do business with a company that makes things harder for them."
This stems from how the departments view each other. CMOs see IT as an "execution and delivery" provider and not as a valuable partner in the digital world. CIOs, on the other hand, believe marketers make broad promises and do not provide adequate information on business requirements, specifically when it comes to data integration or IT standards.
The article mentions that these two departments will probably never be best friends, but by clearing the air and getting everyone on the same page, efficiency and overall operational processes will improve.