Digital teams

Doubling down on building a digital team during Covid-19

Written by Pim van Helten on 14, Juth 2020

These times make it crystal clear how important an engaging and user-friendly online experience is. Building a digital team is nothing new, as a matter of fact, companies have been doing this for the past two decades.

But now is the time to question everything. Just because it’s always been done a certain way doesn’t mean that we can’t innovate in a whole new way. The shift from offline to online is being fast tracked and having a high performing digital team that helps you create an exceptional customer experience has never been more crucial.

Before we dive in, let’s take a look at what a digital team is, what it is that they do and why you need one.

Digital teams create, implement and test strategies to reach and engage audiences through digital channels such as websites, mobile and social media.

What makes a great digital team?

First of all, you build and manage a digital team with a clear strategy and objectives in mind. You need to have a complete overview of your digital transformation and what new skills and expertise are really needed for the team to be successful.

Next step is making sure you are hiring the right people. Digital teams are diverse and made-up of people with different skill sets. Here is what to look out for:

The techies

Colin is a good DPDK example of a technical expert: he is great at coding and understanding the whole architectural structure of websites, apps and portals. He has great math and problem solving skills. Just like Colin, your tech team has to master these hard skills in order to develop the structure of all your projects.

The creatives

As for the creatives, no one can tell stories and write copy like Aksana, translate your brand identity into creative design like Anouk and create a seamless and smooth user experience like Constantine. You need original and inventive people like them, who know how to tell a story and craft captivating front end experiences that keep your customers engaged and set your brand apart from others.

The strategists

You also need people that are highly analytical, love data and are creative yet methodical in the way they work. Yee Jek has a thorough understanding of digital touchpoints and knows how all the pieces of the puzzle need to come together. He’s skilled at brainstorming, deadline driven and detail obsessed. No digital team is complete without someone like him.

The supportives

Leonie makes every interaction count and leaves no client behind. People like her are often overlooked, but could not be more important. Leonie is an integral part of the team, she keeps our clients happy and the engines running smoothly. You need people like her with technical know-how and impeccable communication skills.

What happens next?

From my experience running DPDK for the past 20 years, here are some do’s and don’ts to consider:

  • Understand that a website, app or portal launch is only the beginning. Your team needs to drive traffic, create engaging campaigns and update content and features, while making sure that everything runs smoothly.
  • Make sure that the design of your digital experience is a differentiator. Too many websites and apps look-a-like nowadays. Grab your phone and go to two of your food delivery apps, followed with a browse at the sites of three major banks in your city. It’s not hard to notice how similar they are. It’s difficult for customers to buy your products if they can’t remember who you are in the first place.
  • Monitor performance to get the best results. Everyone needs to understand what you are trying to accomplish. Create a measurement framework that helps every team member identify their individual contribution.
  • Don’t hire for the sake of hiring. It’s understandable that in times like these, we tend to focus on the short-term, but long-term planning is the way to go. For example, do you need more resources to improve your current platform or create additional campaigns? Your challenge can be easily solved with outsourcing. Faster, more efficient and probably more cost-effective too.
  • Don’t start until you have internal company alignment. Your digital team will have an impact on all departments within the company. It is important that everyone is on board to deliver what the company needs.

A great digital team will not only help you mitigate the fire of this crisis, but will be one of your best assets in the long run. It’s true what they say, a company is only as good as the people in it and building a high performing team takes time. If you are ever in need of a fresh pair of eyes or want to move full speed ahead, you know where to find us. We are solely focused on creating exceptional digital experiences - we live, eat and breathe it.

Pim van Helten

Pim van Helten


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