People usually cringe at the word audit as it usually means a visit from the IRS followed by the phrase, “You owe us this much”. However, an IBM Marketing Operations Audit (IMO) doesn’t have to be scary. In fact, an audit can uncover many potential areas for improvement in your marketing process. More importantly, an IMO Audit can show you which functionality is no longer being used or no longer supported. It can help identify where new functionality can be achieved from a previous IBM Marketing Operations Installation. CLEARGOALS, an IBM Premier Partner, with several years of IMO experience, can help facilitate and provide recommendations on the best way to improve your implementation.Read on to find out how an IBM Marketing Operations Audit works, our best practice tactics and how CLEARGOALS can help you achieve your audit goals.
First, before starting the audit, it’s best to designate 1 or 2 SME’s (Subject Matter Experts) from each group of users who use IMO regularly. An example would be a Marketing Manager, Campaign Analyst, Creative Manager or Traffic Manager. These are users who can speak to the entire marketing process and how it works within IMO.
Second, have these SME’s create a few bullet points about what they like in IMO, what they don’t like and what their wish list is for future versions.
Audit Working Sessions
It is best to reserve 1-2 days for the audit meetings depending on the size of your implementation and the number of departments involved in the audit. The working sessions attendees should include the following:
- SME’s designated during prep work,
- The IBM Marketing Operations IT representative,
- An IMO Executive sponsor, and,
- The CLEARGOALS IMO Business Solutions Consultants (BSCs) leading the project.
The leading BSC then proceeds to create and share an agenda before the meetings begin. Agenda topics can include the following:
- Organization Overview,
- Overall journey during the Audit process, and/or,
- Pain points that may arise during Audit process.
Agenda topics can up to an hour where the client can ask questions and to allow a thorough discussion amongst the teams.
Post Audit Results
One to two weeks after the audit working sessions, the CLEARGOALS team will present their recommendations for IMO. Post Audit recommendations are separated in three categories:
- Short-Term: Low complexity, immediate changes that can be made to IMO; usually taking no more than a few hours to complete. Examples would include adding a new field to existing templates or updating an existing workflow schedule.
- Medium-Term: Medium complexity changes requiring about 2+ days of work. Examples would be adding a new template or new workflow schedules.
- Long-Term: High complexity changes requiring 2+ weeks of work. Examples include training new users on functionality, creating XML for added automation or creating new COGNOS reports.
Working together, you and CLEARGOALS then determine which updates are best for you and which provide the most value for your dollar.
IBM Marketing Operations Audit – Wrap Up
Following these basic rules and best practices will create an audit experience that you don’t have to be afraid of. It can help you gain more insight into your IMO processes and ensure you are getting the most out of your IMO application.