I have an idea of how a digital team could be structured. It would be a matrix of Service Units and Business Units that creates an interwoven and interconnected team that is focused on collaboration to achieve the service delivery and business objectives.
The Service Units would be responsible for delivering digital services for the organisation. In this non-exhaustive list we have advertising, email and social marketing, the website and analytics, but the list would include every service that is delivered by the department. Each Service Team would manage any platforms and suppliers associated with the service and be the main point of contact for the Business Unit Managers/Teams. The Service Teams, as the experts in their areas (Gladwell’s Mavens), would make recommendations to the Business Teams about how to use their knowledge and services. They would know that they can’t achieve their objectives without working closely with the Business Teams.
The Business Units would be closely aligned with the objectives for the department, in this case online donations, stock collection, event sign-ups, membership subscription, and online retail. The Business Teams would be proactive in approaching the Service Teams to implement their plans. They know they can’t achieve their objectives without working closely with the Service Teams.
This kind of matrix framework and reliance on each other for achieving objectives would naturally foster greater collaborative working without trying to tackle the ‘silo problem’. These teams can continue to work in their silos but they can only achieve their objectives by working together. Communicating the need to be objective-led is another problem.