When starting a new project with clients, we often hear these questions: “Who should be involved in our website project? Do we need to loop in our IT team?” The answer isn’t cut and dry. Depending on the scope of your project, there may be times when your company’s IT staff will need to be involved and other times when nothing will be needed.

Some tasks that may require your IT staff’s input or assistance, such as management/changing of DNS records before launch, setting up hosting, or helping to set-up integrations with third-party tools.

To avoid rework and doubling-back later in the project, it is important to have all teams collaborate in the project plan. The key is that your IT team understands what is going on in the project and that they have an opportunity early on in the new marketing website project to voice their ideas and concerns. 

Figuring out when IT needs to be involved in your website redesign

Your web design agency will guide you through the basic questions to determine how and when your IT team will need to help out. Often, your IT staff weigh in as early as project scoping. If IT’s role has not been brought up or discussed, use the following questions to trigger discussion and define responsibilities.

Which factors impact their work or require IT’s assistance?

The involvement of an IT team in a website project varies depending on your company’s structure and your internal website project team. Some are hands-off and only step in at launch and to handle other minor technical items. Others need to be more involved and help review high-fidelity designs for functionality or integration concerns.

If you’re not sure how involved your IT staff needs to be, ask these questions:

  • Do you need to review high-fidelity designs before they are approved?
  • Do you want to do any specific testing on the website before it launches?
  • Are there permissions or tools that IT will need to provide access to the project?

Pro-tip: Your internal team structure may impact your staff collaborates on your project. Check with your company leadership or project stakeholders to make final decisions regarding which checkpoints are appropriate for IT’s involvement.

Does your IT team manage your DNS?

DNS settings are typically controlled in your domain management dashboard and need to be updated when your new website launches. Check with your IT staff early in the project to determine how these settings are managed so you can plan appropriate steps for an efficient launch.

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Will the IT team be maintaining the webserver or other website maintenance?

It always feels great once you launch, but your work isn’t done. A website needs regular maintenance just like a car. After your new site goes live, take the time to figure out how you will be handling maintenance and how different responsibilities will be split between your IT team and your web design agency partner.

Does the marketing website include any tools or integrations?

Depending on how your website functions, you may use customized tools or third-party integrations for features like contact forms, event registration, credit card processing, and more. In the early stages of the project, you’ll determine if you will migrate tools—such as forms, donations, and portals—to your new website or if you make upgrades or changes.

IT may manage these tools and integrations, so you’ll want to figure that out early in the project. With the new design, you may have upgrade requests or wishlist items for some website functions, and you’ll need to know if IT needs to review or even implement any of these changes.

Managing IT and web designer communications

Whether IT is heavily involved throughout the creation of your new marketing website or just helping with final launch steps, keep the following tips in mind to establish open communication and clear division of responsibilities to keep your website project on track.

  • Establish a point person from your IT staff to help coordinate meetings, feedback, reviews, and approvals
  • Confirm what approval processes will look like, including who can give approvals and at what level
  • Work together to map out responsibilities in the project and stay in contact along the way so nothing falls through the cracks or stalls