The typical situation in a lot of small businesses these days looks like this:
The owner / CEO is in his fifties and has had great success over his lifetime. He is still keeping up with modern technologies that have come indispensable for daily office work in 2016. But the lines are blurry since technology can not be left at work anymore. Your phone is a permanent online connection. To be honest, without his staff he will have to – ultimately loose track of what’s going on.
Let me break down for you how many things could be involved in just one simple action:
Writing a message.
How can we accomplish that today?
- Use a piece of paper
- Write a letter
- Write an email
- Write message on phone
- Use social-intranet
- Use a social platform, such as google+
- Use a business platform, like linkedin
- Use a chat platform
- Post it on facebook
- Post it on twitter
- Post it on your own website
- Saying it into your smartphone and let siri type it
- Use voice-message-chat
Even though these tasks might seem like a No-brainer to you: All these have different underlying technologies which can be linked together or need a manual interface. Once you go over the list again and try to figure out what kind of technologies make it work – I bet you will have to stop at number three – emails. Or could you explain somebody right now how emails are sent and received? If you know the difference between imap and pop3 I count you to the upper level of what ever segment we could cluster that in. Yeah, I know – you don’t need to know that to write an email. And that is good!
But let us take this “small thing” back to past. Still remember when it cost different rates at different times to make a call? You would think twice before calling and rather wait for the evening, to make a “cost effective decision”. That makes it obvious that you would also chose your method of writing more carefully if you could feel the monetary impact right away. But you don’t. And in fact you maybe would have never thought about it.
Since we are often only “users” and separated from the administrative part of thing we tend to not care about what makes it work. And it also makes us blind to things that are right in front of us.
Fair enough, that might seem like a little stretch, but I am pretty sure that the implications will become clear in a few sentences.
A “small business” – that could be anything between two persons in a coworking space. Or a company with 5 to 10 employees that generate between 1.5 and 3 Mio per year. Up to the maximum of 249 employees or a maximal revenues of 50 mio euro.
Regardless how many people you employ – there are different departments – which usually come with a certain view that makes an online integration officer worth gold. With a department comes a background and with that we can find a certain type of education that has been followed. Of course is it inevitable that this presets your point-of-view and your are not able to connect if you don’t know.
There are two types of personas that make excellent online integration officers: The ones with a broad knowledge of computer technology and business skills who can make the connections because they know. Or the other type that observes, asks and concludes.
I would go so far and make the statement: Anything that you put in to your computer and or use it for will become relevant in the future, because we keep integrating real events into your digital resources. Big Data is here and if do not collect it, somebody is going to.
The Online Integration Officer will save you money by
- Getting more organic traffic and search results out of your online marketing efforts
- Giving you an edge on competitors
- Avoiding costly custom coding that has already been done
- Eliminating manual tasks that could be automated or complicated processes that involve multiple applications
- Integrating different software via api interfaces rather than having a human being the interface
- and this list goes on and on and on.
So what is the integration officer doing?
If you have an idea about anything online that involves spending time or money – you basically have to ask the marketing department, a programmer, a designer, a social community manager, your office manager, a secretary, and finally your kids. Now take all these answers and identify the connection points.
Name a person that either has the widest knowledge of below mentioned categories and or the person that is most able to communicate with each of these departments in a way that brings out the hidden connections that make the difference.
Overview of Skills
- Image / Graphic Design
- Online Software Development
- Knows at least 2 markup / programming languages
- Content Management Systems
- Customer Relationship Management
- Inbound Marketing
- Content Creation
- Social Interactions
- Strategic Approaches
- Search Engine Optimization
- Facebook and Google Advertising
- Social Network Marketing
Depending on your company, you might have some of these departments in house and maybe one person represents numerous departments. Some of them you have covered by agencies, that have their own subset of competencies.
Allow time for an evaluation from all of these perspectives and you will be one step ahead of your competition.
Check your online interfaces and starts internally with your
Customer Relations Management / Inbound Marketing Software
- Digital Outputs that represent your company such as
- Image / Photo
- Video / Audio
- Project-Time-TrackingAll software used for internal processes
and go on with external activities such as
- Your website
- one more
- every day
What can you do now?
Send this article to your HR today and identify your new OIO. Contact me if you like to talk about setting up an individual job profile for your company.