Marketing and IT leaders at war, who’s in charge?

86% of marketing and IT leaders want to improve website agility but disagreements over website ownership and competing priorities are putting up barriers.

SaaS-based website operations (WebOps) platform Pantheon, has published new research exploring the relationship between marketing and IT leaders as they develop and manage their most important digital asset – their website. 

The survey uncovered a collective focus on improving website agility. However, competing priorities and collaboration gaps create significant challenges for both groups. 

Both marketing and IT leaders surveyed in the research pointed to internal struggles that hinder program execution. More than half (59%) stated that making a simple change to their website can take more than a month, and 19% said updates take four to six months. 

Given this dynamic, 86% of respondents say they want to improve website agility. 

Both marketing and IT leaders want to deliver extraordinary user experiences through their sites, with 86% of respondents ranking it as their site’s most important job.  

The divide between marketing and IT 

Both marketers and IT leaders have a stake in the website’s performance; however, they don’t agree on who is the site’s primary decision-maker. More than eight in 10 (84%)of marketers claim decision-making responsibility but so do 87% of IT leaders. 

This ownership debate creates a push-and-pull on whose focus areas are most important, with the website at the centre of the struggle, noted Pantheon. In fact, more than one-third (34%) of respondents anticipate competing priorities will be this year’s biggest obstacle.


Agility is essential, but collaboration poses a challenge

“Agility is a must for today’s WebOps teams,” said Christy Marble, Pantheon Chief Marketing Officer. 

“The organisations who achieve extraordinary digital performance are those whose  cross-functional teams rally around continual process improvement. When we empower our people to remove friction from both internal processes and from our customer journey, then we increase customer productivity and employee productivity. That is when we see real business impact.”  

Of those surveyed, 82% agree that agility significantly impacts their organisation’s digital marketing efforts.  

Some (22%) say market trends are changing too fast to keep up, but the bigger obstacle to a more agile website is collaboration. It ranked highest among respondents, with 42% saying working with others to develop and manage the site is their biggest challenge. More than half (52%) say clearer role definition across teams can improve collaboration at their organisations, and 49% agree that streamlined processes to update the website are key.

Nearly all (98%) respondents agree that adopting WebOps practices would improve the productivity of their web teams, fostering better collaboration and aligning the website toward shared goals.  

“Modern WebOps teams are growth drivers for their companies,” said Marble. “Organisations that prioritise improving agility and integrating WebOps processes and technologies will be most competitive and deliver the best customer experiences.”