If you’ve ever followed the 24 Hours of Le Mans race, you know it’s not just a test of speed but also endurance. Drivers, engineers, and pit crews align around a single, crystal-clear objective: to cross the finish line first after a grueling 24-hour endurance test. Speed and sustainability must harmonize, or else the team risks engine failure, crashes, or there can be a host of other disasters. This high-stakes, round-the-clock race is a perfect metaphor for how IT and business technologists need to unite. Both parties are crucial team members in the race to deliver an exceptional Digital Employee Experience (DEX). Yet, they often find themselves driving in different lanes, risking a breakdown that could cost them the race.This article by @NancyVElsacker explains why IT and business technologists need to unite, like a Le Mans team, to deliver an exceptional Digital Employee Experience (DEX). #ITSM #DEX #EX Click To Tweet
The Disconnect: A Tale of Two Departments (The Engineers and Drivers)
Being on the software vendor side, I often see that the disconnect is much like a Le Mans team where the engineers and drivers aren’t talking. Business technologists are like race car drivers focused on crossing the finish line—sometimes so intensely that they overlook the complexities of the engine that will get them there. They’re fixated on outcomes and can forget the technological depth needed to achieve them. This is precisely where IT teams come in. Think of them as the pit crew and engineers who understand the intricacies of the “engine,” ensuring the car not only crosses the finish line but does so without bursting into flames.
IT is often preoccupied with system stability, security, and scalability, while business technologists are focused on agility, innovation, and speed to market. If business technologists don’t consult IT due to a lack of understanding of the required technological depth, they risk choosing the wrong solutions—and getting burnt in the process.
The Costs of Misalignment and Pitfalls of Racing Solo
Just as a Le Mans car can’t win without a unified team, an organization can suffer from this disconnect. It leads to inefficient laps, pit stops at the wrong times, and even engine failures (metaphorically speaking). In real-world terms, a fractured approach to DEX can result in lowered productivity and increased employee turnover, and let’s not forget the financial implications. A poorly executed DEX can increase costs through redundant systems, inefficiencies, and the often-ignored but crucial loss of competitive advantage.
Marketing: The Pit Strategist in the Experience Endurance Race
If the 24 Hours of Le Mans had a pit strategist, that role in the corporate world would be played by Marketing. Unlike other departments that can sometimes get tunnel vision, Marketing has always had its eyes on the prize—and that prize is the user or employee at the end of the journey. From meticulously crafting customer journeys to creating detailed personas, Marketing knows a thing or two about being user and employee-centric. They aren’t just balancing speed and sustainability; they’re plotting the optimal race strategy that ensures the drivers and the engineers meet their needs without losing sight of the ultimate goal—winning the race with a stellar DEX.
This focus on the employee or end-user can be a powerful lesson for IT and business technologists. While they may each be preoccupied with different aspects of the business, ultimately, they share a common finishing line: an exceptional DEX. And like any well-planned race strategy, achieving this demands they work in unison, guided by the needs and experiences of those who matter most: the employees.
From Pit Stop to Podium: Aligning IT and Business Technologists on the DEX Track
No one wins the 24 Hours of Le Mans in a vacuum; every driver knows they are part of a complex ecosystem of engineers, mechanics, strategists, and even the fans cheering them on. Similarly, IT and business technologists must realize they’re both integral parts of the same race, where the trophy is an exceptional DEX.
So, how do you sync up to ensure your corporate racecar isn’t just fast but also reliable for the long haul? Just as in Le Mans, where all the roles unite around winning the race, IT and business technologists must align their strategies and tactics to deliver the ultimate DEX. The key is to create shared milestones and touchpoints that keep everyone focused and in the loop. And that’s where we can borrow a page from Marketing’s playbook: keeping the employee—the ultimate end-user—at the center of our endeavors.Here, @NancyVElsacker shares the practical steps to follow to succeed with digital employee experience (DEX). #DEX #EX #ITSM Click To Tweet
Practical Steps to Lap the DEX Circuit Together
Alignment doesn’t happen through wishful thinking. It takes concrete steps. Here’s how to get both sides on the same track:
- Start Your Engines with Communication: You can only align by communicating. Kickstart the dialogue with a formal meeting where both teams can present their priorities and challenges.
- Map Out the Race Course Together: Joint planning sessions allow for a shared understanding of the challenges and opportunities ahead. This is the moment to establish common key performance indicators (KPIs) focused on DEX.
- The Control Panel is for Everyone: Develop shared dashboards that display both business technology and IT metrics. This provides a clear snapshot of where the team stands on delivering a seamless DEX.
- Listen to the Roar of the Crowd: Collect regular employee feedback to fine-tune your strategy. If the people in the stands (or cubicles) aren’t happy, you’re not winning.
The Triple DEX Win: Employees, IT, and Business Technologists
When the Le Mans race nears its end, it’s not just the driver crossing the finish line who feels the triumph; it’s a collective win for the entire team. Every role has played a part in achieving that monumental feat, from engineers to strategists. Similarly, when IT and business technologists harmonize their efforts around a shared DEX goal, the result is far more than just a “completed project.” It’s a triumph of organizational synergy that manifests in increased productivity, cost efficiency, and, most critically, an exceptional DEX that has everyone cheering—from the C-suite to the mailroom.
By implementing a strategy that places the employee experience at its core, the IT and business technology teams don’t just finish the DEX race; they win it. They transform from disconnected units into a united force that crosses the finish line with arms raised in a collective victory. The result? A lap around the track worthy of any highlight reel and an organization poised to tackle the next 24-hour race—or business quarter—with confidence."By implementing a strategy that places the employee experience at its core, the IT and business technology teams don’t just finish the DEX race; they win it." – @NancyVElsacker #DEX #EX #ITSM Click To Tweet
The 24 Hours of Le Mans teaches us a valuable lesson about the balance between speed and sustainability, a lesson that holds profound implications for the world of DEX. It’s not just about crossing the finish line; it’s about how you get there and who you bring along for the ride. As we’ve seen, IT and business technologists have much to learn from the world of racing—and from the Marketing pit crews who understand the nuances of the journey. By aligning their strategies, focusing on their shared DEX objective, and putting the employee experience front and center, they ensure not just a strong finish but an organizational win. So let’s rev those engines, synchronize our gears, and make for that checkered flag together.
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Nancy Louisnord is the Global Chief Marketing Officer of Manta, responsible for the company’s global marketing programs and product marketing strategy. With more than 15 years of international leadership experience in the B2B IT SaaS industry, she is a sought-after presenter at conferences and one of HDI’s TOP 25 Thought Leaders and HDI’s featured contributors. Manta offers a comprehensive data lineage platform that gives companies complete visibility and control of their data pipeline. Manta has helped companies reduce incidents through proactive risk analysis, accelerate digital transformation, and enhance governance by building trust in data.