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July 9, 2022

Measuring Your Organization's Maturity: The Five Levels

Ranging from functional to innovative, figure out where you are to know where you need to go.
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Let’s say you're a marketing or sales organization that wants to improve your customer experience and transform the way your organization works internally. You know the landscape is changing every day, but sometimes it’s hard to know where to start.

Not to mention customers are more demanding than ever for unique, customized experiences.

How well is your organic content strategy working? How does it compliment your paid media strategy? What tools are you using to analyze data to help indicate where you should focus? These are just a couple of the questions that you might ask yourself.

To get started, first you’ll want to know the current state of your organization along the five following levels.

How does your organization best describe itself?  

  1. FUNCTIONAL: If your organization is functional, Marketing serves as a support for sales and executive teams, with minimal digital capabilities. The organizational focus is on Marketing Communications and Sales enablement, but nothing more.
  1. TRANSACTIONAL: If your organization is transactional, Marketing serves as a support function for the entire enterprise, with some digital capabilities. Here, the focus is on ensuring work requests are fulfilled with an accepted level of effectiveness and efficiency. However, the marketing department is generally not seen as contributing to market differentiation.
  1. EFFICIENT: If your organization is efficient, Marketing is a core function of the business. The people and the organization are digitally savvy and leverage data deliberately. The marketing department also works cross-functionally with other departments streamlining all stakeholders’ actions and insights. Marketing technologies are leveraged and consistently optimized.
  1. STRATEGIC: If your organization is strategic, Marketing is a partner in day-to-day business performance, and the organization’s leadership is proactive and data-driven. There is a bias for digital channels, which are integrated across the customer experience.
  1. INNOVATIVE: If your organization is innovative, Marketing leads the business, and its focus is on managing brands. P&L is aligned with a brand-based structure, and the organization has abundant digital and creative innovators. Marketing leadership is valued member of CEO’s Leadership Team.

Did you get an idea of where your organization may lie on the spectrum? You may not fall into a specific bucket – and that’s OK. These levels aren’t discrete – they're more of a continuum.

Success also doesn’t require every growth-based organization to perform at Level 5 any of the time, let alone all the time. For instance, some organization’s environments, enterprises, and customers may enable them to effectively and efficiently function at a Transactional level. However, you should expect customer intimacy to grow alongside the maturity level, and this baseline expectation has only increased over the past decade - particularly over the past year.

Establishing a level of maturity

To establish your level of maturity, it’ll require deep-diving into your organization’s core customer engagement components: People and Agility, Marketing Insight and Analytics, Readiness and Process, Activation and Execution, and Technology. Exploring each of these interdependent components provides insight into the way your organization works to accomplish its goals and how it supports the broader business. Assessing these components helps you understand your organization’s level of maturity and to identify where you may need to focus efforts to evolve moving forward.  

For example – How do you engage with peer functions, leadership, and shared services?

Our personal experiences at CMG tell us that most organizations are currently well-served by an Efficient or Strategic Marketing, Sales, and Customer Experience organization(s), but consumer trends and digitization are constantly challenging their ability to keep their finger on the pulse.

If you want to learn more, take our 10-minute ThriveNumber™ Assessment to reveal your organization’s potential to realize its long-term objectives and thrive.