Business teams (Product, Growth, Marketing, etc.) and Technical (Engineering) teams are often annoyed by each other. Why is this such a common occurrence?
From the engineering point of view….
Marketing and Product teams take the wrong approach. Maybe they’ve requested a gigantic list of product changes on an impossible timeline. Maybe they bring user feedback to Engineering when it feels way too late to do anything about that feedback. Why are they always silent for weeks on end, then suddenly flooding the engineers with technical requests at the eleventh hour?
From the business point of view….
Engineering teams have an allergy to clarity. Maybe they released a feature that we didn’t know they were going to release. Maybe they’re taking ages to create what appear to be simple, surface-level changes. Why can’t they respect the promotional cycle, and what’s taking them so long to complete these requests? We have numbers to meet!
The end result of this dilemma is a lack of synchronicity between Business and Technical teams.
Customers can pick up on this lack of cohesion. When engineering and business friction occurs, the product experience and the marketing collateral are mismatched. Marketing might be talking about an app that doesn’t exist, and Engineering might be building features that are nowhere to be found in sales pitches or on website copy. Roll-outs on both ends are frustrated by obstacles.
There are several reasons for the lack of synchronicity between Business and Technical teams.
1. Engineering holds the key to something that marketing needs.
Engineering teams are usually the gatekeepers for Business teams, for security purposes. The engineers keep the user experience from suffering security breaches and breakdowns. No one wants a broken product or user experience. However, this gatekeeping position can often create resentment on behalf of business teams, who are coming to the table armed with user feedback that they’re anxious to implement.
2. Technical teams are laser-focused on the user, and marketing teams on a larger story.
Engineering teams are often working from the perspective of user interaction and functionality. How does a user actually engage with a product? By contrast, Marketing teams are focused on all of the context around that product — what are the user personas? Where do we find more users? How do you delight a user? While technical teams can lack a lot of context around a user, business teams can lack and understanding of what it takes to actually create the product. The confusion can lead to improperly implemented features or delayed implementation of features leading to lost opportunities.
3. Both teams are weighed down by different metrics and requirements.
There are so many requirements by business teams that won’t get processed by tech teams. In the same vein, tech teams get so many requirements from other teams, and they have limited bandwidth to address them. That’s because both teams operate from a different set of metrics. Marketing is focused on executing a marketing campaign, and success metrics are usually centered around customer communication and satisfaction. A product team is focused on time-to-market, speed, and product adoption. It’s rare that product and marketing get together to discuss commonly-shared metrics that indicate how well the product is performing for both teams. There is a disconnect on metrics and requirements.
4. Tech and business teams don’t overlap much in the type of work they do.
In the Venn Diagram of day-to-day work, technical and business teams actually have very little to do with each other. Engineers are working on design and back-end engineering, and marketers are working with creative agencies, branding teams, and external stakeholders. Without a consistent effort to collaborate with each other, these teams can go into separate silos very quickly. As a result, marketers can be building out campaigns for products that have already shifted out of sync.
So how do you solve the Engineering vs. Business dilemma?
There is a delicate balance to be struck. You don’t want engineering to be the unchecked gatekeepers, guarding and blocking your product from growth. Nor do you want complete transparency and access by marketing and growth teams, who don’t have engineering capabilities and may accidentally jeopardize the user experience. What do you mean, you’ve turned everything green and can’t undo it?
Instead, find a balance. You want to empower marketing teams to improve the user journey without having to code, while still maintaining security and order. You can do this by:
1. Enabling marketing and growth teams to test, modify, and customize at scale.
Hansel’s architecture was built to accelerate speed to market. Instead of having to go to engineering teams for every single change in the product experience, you can customize new product experiences instantly. Test multiple UX treatments, connect to multiple data sources, and measure impact – all without touching the codebase.
2. Freeing up the blockages in your workflows and approvals.
You can enable your marketing and growth teams to modify layouts, add new widgets, and personalize based on user actions and data from internal systems. That’s the type of work that’s usually put at the back of the queue reserved for tech teams.
3. Allowing your user outreach to achieve new levels of personalization.
Hansel allows you to surface products and user flows without going to the trouble of shipping new releases. Surface new products to users based on existing data or user flows within your application. You will drive more subscribers when you surface products or features at just the right time, based on usage and subscription information.
4. Moving at the “speed of thought.”
9 times out of 10, tech and business teams grow out of sync because they’re not on the same page when it comes to timing. That problem disappears when changes are instantaneous. With Hansel, you can actually push digital experiences to any device, instantly, without involving the tech team. Because of the way Hansel works, your backend systems and microservers can integrate to deliver the right experience to the right user, at the right time.
Open up the playground to business teams.
Experimentation is healthy, and it doesn’t always have to come solely from inside the tech team. When you give the rights for control over to business teams, you can set the stage for testing and development that could potentially revolutionize your product. Great ideas come from everywhere, and business teams should have a platform for experimentation when they have great ideas.
Platforms like Hansel help tech and marketing teams get on the same page. The templates are created by engineers, and checks and balances are kept in place on the back-end. Meanwhile, access is opened up to marketing and growth teams for experimentation and ownership. Your previously overburdened tech teams are now freed up to focus on their core responsibilities, while business teams are free to experiment around growth metrics, and iterate independently, in order to improve revenue, engagement, and retention while providing an improved digital experience for your end users and customers.
Welcome to a larger and more impactful collaboration.