- How We Do It
We now live in the Experience Age! Which means that you need to continuously improve your products and services to not only meet customer expectations, but to truly delight them. Here's our approach to designing delightful customer experiences.
“People don't want to buy a quarter inch drill. They want a quarter inch hole".
This quote holds the essence of the Jobs-To-Be-Done framework, which states that your customers "hire" your products and services to get specific "jobs" done. Jobs, in this case is a metaphor, representing your customers' real needs.
While this seems obvious, very few companies use this “getting the job done” perspective to identify opportunities for innovation.
Your journey to building delightful experiences starts with understanding the real jobs your customers are trying to get done. Not the shiny "features" and "functions" in your products or services but rather, what your customers are trying to accomplish with those capabilities.
The front stage processes, as the name suggests are the series of actions that happen in front of your customers. These can be interactions with your employee (e.g. a call-center representative) or a computer (e.g. a web/mobile app).
We map these actions and then flesh out additional details like the channels your customers use (web, phone, store etc.) and your customers' emotions (happy, frustrated, angry).
This is the first step in shifting the company's perspective from inside-out to outside-in.
The back stage processes, as the name suggests are the series of actions that happen behind the scenes to deliver value to the customer. These can be actions taken by an employee or an automated process.
Next, these actions are fleshed out with additional details like metrics, employee emotions, and insights.
This step helps uncover any gaps between your customers' experience and internal operational processes.
Armed with insights about customer and internal operational perspective, assemble a cross-functional team to come up with ideas that improve the overall customer experience. Start by asking the following questions:
Next, prioritize these ideas based on customer impact, business value, effort, cost, and risks to uncover the most important ideas to improve the overall customer experience.
The ideas generated in the previous step are fairly high-level/abstract and therefore it's difficult to align everyone around them. For people to rally behind a solution idea, they need a more concrete representation. That's where prototyping comes in.
For the high-priority ideas identified, prototype solutions using the insights gained from previous steps. By making the ideas tangible, it helps you think through the viability and usability of the ideas before committing resources to build it.
At this stage, aim for mid-level fidelity - it is high-level enough that it demonstrates only the key aspects of the solution ideas, but more detailed than a wire-frame. In our experience, this prototype level is adequate for early stage testing and learning.
It's important to acknowledge that everything you have done so far is just hypotheses. You may have guessed the pain your users face and you've guessed that your ideas will solve their problems.
Successful products and services cannot be built on guesses. So, what do we do? We seek validation from the only people whose opinion matters — our users.
The goal of usability testing is to ensure the solution ideas help users achieve their goals as efficiently as possible. Set up usability labs and observe users interacting with the prototypes to perform key activities. Your goal is to identify any friction between the users and the software. Then you rinse-and-repeat this process till you have solved for your users.
There you have it! That’s our approach to customer experience. At ProductStack, we design products and services that users love - we hope you embrace the approach and win over your customers. All the best!
Participate in our Experience Design Workshop and in just two weeks redesign your company from your customer's perspective. Your customers will be happier and reward you with their loyalty.