Key stakeholders

Many businesses in 2021 have come to realize that becoming “pandemic-proof” directly relates to an organization’s digital strength. Based on Forrester data,McKinseyfound that ecommerce has seen 10 years’ growth in as little as 3 months, with growth being driven by the need to connect digitally with customers while brick-and-mortar doors were locked shut.

When the decision is made to invest in a commerce transformation, one of the most important steps is determining who from the organization is involved in the process. For smaller businesses, sometimes the ecommerce or digital team is only a handful of people, so the entire team takes on the task. However, for larger organizations, one approach is to split this up into three different areas, including:

  • Experience
  • Technology
  • Executive sponsor

Who owns the experience?

This is the person or team at the organization with the best understanding of the current and future wants and needs of the customer and who is ultimately responsible for delivering the experience that addresses those wants and needs. This includes focal points like product assortment, inventory visibility, promotions, customer complaints, and real-time order updates and shipment tracking. This group often includes titles, such as:

  • VP of Digital Strategy
  • VP of Ecommerce
  • VP of Marketing
  • Customer Service Manager
  • Head of Sales (mainly for B2B applications)

Who owns the technology?

Most commerce implementations require several different platforms to communicate back and forth and be fully integrated, such as an order management system, customer service platform, or ERP system. Back-office systems being prepared for a commerce transformation often dictate the timeline for an implementation, so having contacts from an organization’s IT team involved from day one to support the initiative is imperative. This group often include:

  • IT Systems Manager, CTO, and in-house tech team
  • ERP (or any back-office) Engineer

Who is the executive sponsor?

Digital Commerce 360 has reported that the number one reason that organizations haven’t yet invested in a new commerce transformation is because they lack leadership support. The extent to which the leadership team is involved is crucial to a brand’s success. Full support from the following roles, including recurring checkpoint meetings throughout the duration of a commerce implementation, is recommended:

  • The entire C-suite