Courage to gap? – Rather not!

Would Hansi Flick have needed more courage to leave gaps (gap is the english word for “Lücke” in german) in the decisive group match at the World Cup in Qatar against Costa Rica? (Note: “Lücke” is the nickname of the only real German centre-forward Niclas Füllkrug who was in the German line-up.
Flick was criticised, sometimes harshly, for not putting him in the starting eleven)
We won’t be able to find out, and the rest of this World Cup is history now.

The gaps in the implementation process

Courage to take a gap is necessary and even inevitable in some situations in life, but how much courage to take a gap should one have when integrating a PIM or DAM system?
What gap(s) could even arise during implementation?
The biggest gap is in a very decisive and important role in the project, which is usually not filled at all, or not adequately.
Let’s take a look at the classic line-up of a PIM/DAM project:
On the one hand, we have the software integrator side.
Here we usually find the following roles (no claim to completeness):

  • Projectlead
  • Project Management Office (PMO)
  • Technical Consultant
  • Business Consultant
  • Developper
  • Tester
  • In the agile context, other roles can be added, but I don’t want to go into that here!

    On the client side, the line-up is completed by:

  • Projectlead (mainly from the organizational side)
  • Product Owner
  • Stakeholder
  • Various representatives from departments involved in the project
  • Two of the departments that are probably most involved in these projects on the client side are the marketing and IT departments.

    And this is where we encounter our first gap in the project!

    I have been looking after clients in the areas of DAM and PIM for more than 20 years now. One of the very biggest problems I have been able to identify is the collaboration between IT and marketing. This is by no means to say that the two departments are not “green” to each other, but they simply speak a completely different language.

    The only way to solve this is to “install” a role that acts as a translator between IT and marketing. This person must be able to understand, classify and evaluate the requirements and needs of both departments. This requires know-how from both the business and IT sides. If this person is missing in the integration process (also during the selection process), there will almost certainly be massive problems.

    The second position in the integration process where a gap occurs is between the client and the integrator.

    On the client side, a strong product owner and/or project manager is needed. This person needs to be able to evaluate trades technically and professionally. It is also about a real sparring partner for the integrator, so this role should not be provided by the integrator. This competence must be placed on the client’s side and there must be a business demarcation from the integrator.

    I would like to give you an example from my own life:
    A good 18 years ago I built my own house. The construction company “kindly” provided me with a construction manager from their ranks. Very nice, wasn’t it? For me, the whole thing ended in a process of numerous extreme problems combined with additional expenditure of funds. The site manager got his wages from the construction company, so whose interests would he represent when the going got tough? Exactly! And this is exactly what I had to experience in several situations.

    Just as I would hire a neutral construction manager if I were to build my own house again, I would also install my own neutral project manager for a software integration project.
    An integrator’s project manager cannot fully represent the client’s interests. He is in a conflict of conscience from day one, which is unhealthy for the whole project.
    So we would have to be courageous twice. Firstly, in the communication internally between marketing and IT, and secondly, in the cooperation between integrator and client in general.
    You can have this courage – but you shouldn’t.

    Who fills the gaps?

    Ultimately, you need a person who:

  • A deep and broad technical knowledge – important: in the area of PIM and DAM!
  • An equally deep and broad technical/IT understanding
  • Who represents 100% of the clients’ interests
  • Who is strong in argumentation and communication
  • This person will be able to fill our two gaps that we have identified. The result should be a project whose chances of success are massively higher!
    See also the services I offer in this area:
    DAM Evangelist – Services
    If you have any questions or suggestions, or would like to share your own experiences, I look forward to hearing from you!


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