6 Key Creative and IT Team Members for Digital Marketing Success

By Robert Half on February 13, 2019 at 8:00am

When it comes to executing digital marketing initiatives successfully, you need both sides of the brain: creative and technology expertise. Whether your company is redesigning a website, launching a mobile app, or optimizing its search or email marketing strategy, creative teams can’t do the job without help from IT — and vice versa.

But partnering to bring these projects to life is no easy feat. And some businesses are struggling more than others, according to research from The Creative Group and Robert Half Technology. When creative and IT leaders were asked to rate their team’s and company’s ability to effectively carry out digital projects, it wasn’t all A’s.

Overall, the research shows most respondents think highly of their department’s and organization’s capabilities. On a scale of one (failing) to five (excellent), both creative and technology leaders gave above-average ratings, ranging from 3.92 to 4.14. The research also revealed who’s leading the pack and who’s lagging in the digital realm. Check out the infographic below for the full survey results and additional insight into the state of companies’ digital marketing strategies.

Hiring creative or IT professionals? We can help:

While collaboration is important to digital marketing success, having the right creative and tech talent on your team is even more important. Separate reports from Robert Half Technology (Staffing Digital Projects: Aligning the Right Resources for Success) and The Creative Group (Step Up Your Digital Game: Lessons From In-House Creative Teams) show that the top technical skills lacking on creative and IT teams are content creation and content marketing, data science and data analysis, and web and user experience design. The reports also tell us that these aren’t the easiest skill sets to find.

Want to work your way to an A+ digital marketing strategy?

Consider adding these six key creative and IT players to your team:

1. Digital strategist — This person identifies digital marketing strategies for meeting a company’s or client’s goals. They define target audiences, analyze data to measure effectiveness of campaigns and determine the appropriate digital media channels and strategies to connect and engage with customers.

2. Marketing analytics manager — A marketing analytics manager provides data-driven insights to various stakeholders, leveraging data from marketing automation, CRM software and other business intelligence tools. They work with other departments, like IT, to help companies improve processes and meet business goals.

3. Mobile applications developer — Collaborating with designers, front-end developers and product stakeholders, this professional delivers technical solutions for mobile application projects. They are also responsible for migrating and adapting existing web applications to a mobile platform.

4. Project manager — This individual provides strategic leadership and planning for program and portfolio management, as well as coordinates and oversees the activities of employees. They identify, prioritize, authorize, manage and control projects to achieve strategic business objectives.

5. UX designer — By understanding users’ underlying emotional and functional needs, a UX designer determines the architecture and wireframes to help a user navigate a product or website. They work with design and technology teams to create an enjoyable experience that also supports business objectives.

6. Web developer — Responsible for integrating websites with back-end systems, web developers work with marketing and design teams to develop, test and execute functionality and design improvements for a company’s website.

Wondering how much you should pay these professionals? 



On a scale of 1 (failing) to 5 (excellent), how would you grade your … ?

Team’s ability to execute digital initiatives 3.97 4.14
Top of the class Small agencies (4.13) Midsize companies (4.18)
Underperformers (scored below average) Small companies (3.80), Large companies (3.50) Small companies (4.11)
Company’s ability to execute digital initiatives 3.92 4.11
Top of the class Large agencies (4.14) Midsize companies (4.20)
Underperformers (scored below average) Small companies (3.75), Large companies (3.37) Small companies (4.08), Large companies (4.05)
Small companies: 100-249 employees
Midsize companies: 250-999 employees
Large companies: 1,000+ employees
Small agencies: 20-49 employees
Midsize agencies: 50-99 employees
Large agencies: 100+ employees


Creative leaders were asked, “To what extent does your company make use of the following to support digital marketing efforts?”

Customer experience research and analytics
59% Greatly
36% Somewhat
5% Not at all
Data-driven marketing
58% Greatly
39% Somewhat
2% Not at all
Personalization and recommendations
53% Greatly
42% Somewhat
4% Not at all
Machine learning/artificial intelligence
37% Greatly
41% Somewhat
22% Not at all

Creative leaders were asked, “What is the biggest barrier to executing digital initiatives at your company?”

32% Legacy technology
26% Organizational structure/lack of cross-departmental collaboration
25% Inadequate budget
17% Digital skills gap within the organization

IT leaders were asked, “How supportive are your organization’s leaders to experiment with emerging technologies in order to improve business processes or efficiency?”

43% Very supportive
54% Somewhat supportive
3% Not at all supportive


71% of creative professionals and 77% of IT professionals say it’s challenging for their company to find talent with up-to-date digital skills.

Technical skills most lacking on creative and IT teams:

Content creation and content marketing
Data science and data analysis
Web and user experience design

Sources: The Creative Group survey of more than 400 advertising and marketing hiring decision makers in the United States and Robert Half Technology survey of more than 2,500 IT hiring decision makers in the United States; Step Up Your Digital Game: Lessons Learned from In-House Creative Teams report and Staffing Digital Projects: Aligning the Right Resources for Success report

Some responses do not total 100 percent due to rounding.

© 2018 Robert Half International Inc. An Equal Opportunity Employer M/F/Disability/Veterans.

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