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Events Service design

Is good content service design? And how do you deliver it?

Thank you to everyone at IXDA Sydney — especially Joe and Lisa who were no sooner off the plane from the IXDA international conference in Milan, than they were hosting another event and sharing what they learned.

The Feb 20 IXDA gathering headline speaker was Mel Flanagan from Nook Studios who shared Nook’s case studies and approach. Check out Nook’s site for the government case studies outlined on the night.

Nook’s approach is content first, participatory, highly visual, and user-centred. The government case studies featured websites, brochures, and videos. Examples reimagined maps to overlay other information like policy data. Others included visual representations of process and legislation to show where people fit in. One such visualisation influenced the government department involved to create an extra step in their process for community consultation and outreach. This shows the power of reimagining and ‘evidencing’ experiences.

Here is what I took away and took notice of from the evening.

Reframing service design with content strategy

  • Services don’t work without content. Content is central to the experience
  • If you are not being content-first you are making transactions, not experiences
  • Get to know the policy, how the money flows, the time involved, the material flows – to then map and visualise a process that people can make sense of and use

“Content design is service design” Mel Flanagan, Nook Studios.

Content and information design is service design

  • Consider, what the user journey is and should be, and what the content experience should be to support it
  • What information do people need to know and understand across their journey? (Mel spoke of creating technical maps, story maps, and policy maps).
  • What decisions is the user informing?
  • Who do they need to go to? What are their rights?

“A lot of what we are doing is map making” Mel Flanagan, Nook Studios

Redesign the project

  • Gather data and content first
  • Have a content team from the start to avoid the ‘content crisis’ that occurs when project development and design streams progress too far without content. After all, what can you launch without content?
  • Rethink “discovery” phrase – include an explicit pre-design phase to understand objectives, audiences, stakeholders and importantly to also understand the context, data, and what content exists now
  • Include participation with stakeholders at every step
  • Optimise your workflow and design process to produce the digital experience with print artefacts

As always, be human-centred

  • Get to know your audience to give them what they need
  • Take a participatory approach with stakeholders
  • Test concepts with the target audience/end-users

 

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Service design

“The thing I have noticed is that when the anecdotes and the data disagree, the anecdotes are usually right”

Bezos said it was important for him to stay directly connected with customers because it was easy to fall into the trap of relying too heavily on data and metrics. “I’m actually a big fan of anecdotes in business,” he said.

“We have tons of metrics, we have weekly business reviews, metric decks, we know so many things about the customers — whether we’re delivering on time, whether the packages have too much air in them — we have so many metrics that we monitor. And the thing I have noticed is that when the anecdotes and the data disagree, the anecdotes are usually right.

“There’s something wrong with the way you’re measuring it. When you’re shipping billions of packages a year, for sure you need good data and metrics, but then you need to check that data with your intuition and your instincts.”

Jeff Bezos

Not to downplay the many criticisms of Jeff Bezos, particularly working conditions there is no doubting the impact of the company’s customer obsession. I was struck at how much importance is placed on direct customer feedback, particularly for a data driven company.

Read the whole article at http://www.news.com.au/finance/work/at-work/why-amazon-executives-dread-the-question-mark-email-from-jeff-bezos/news-story/948763dc9ba944ad10484cfdd69140f3

Categories
Service design

How long does a journey take to make?

This week a colleague rushed up asking how long it would take to produce a journey map and the answer was … it depends.

But first, what is a journey map?

journey-slider

A journey map is a model of a person’s experience over time with an organisation. They can describe a service experience of an existing customer, such as a support call or they can describe the sales experience of a new customer. The latter usually conforming to some version or other of the purchasing funnel. For the purposes of this post I am discussing current-state and not future-state journey maps.

Who and what is represented in journey maps?

A journey map can be the story of a specific persona or it can depict the generalised experience of all customers. Adaptive Path makes this distinction and labels the former a customer journey map, and the later an experience map.

Then there is the “stage” to consider. The front-stage shows the customer experience and the back-stage presents the corresponding experience of the organisation – the teams, systems and processes that combine to deliver the experience. This kind of journey is usually described as a service blueprint.

So … how long does a journey take to make?

To plan resources, people, and effort you need to think about the content and the data that’s informing it. This can come from internal workshops, co-design sessions, or through customer and staff research.

Guidelines for planning

Resourcing guidelines for journey mapping approaches
Activity Inputs Who you’ll need Time Considerations Cost Trade-off
Quick Workshop Anecdotal knowledge Subject matter experts, product owners, front line staff as proxies for customers. 1-2 facilitators. Half-day
  • Usually output as high-level post-it notes.
  • Add 2 days to make a legible and shareable electronic or print deliverable.
$ Minimal time and cost but no first-hand customer data.
Workshop Existing researchVoice of customer data Subject matter experts, staff, product owners. 1-2  facilitators. 1-2 weeks
  • Invest time in sourcing past research reports.
  • Voice of customer data from different sources needs time to collate into a consistent form for comparison and analysis.
  • No data of external factors (personal network, competitors) and just interactions with your organisation makes for a one-sided story. Customers are more motivated to give feedback when something has gone wrong; the resulting journey may be disproportionately negative and may miss all the positive forces that made them customers in the first place.
$$ Minimal time and cost. Depending on quality of research and data journey can be fragmented with no context for wider story or experience.
Journey co-design workshops Recounted experience. Example touch points. Customers who have recently or are currently going through the experience.One facilitator, one note taker. 2-5 weeks
  • 1-2 weeks to recruit participants.Approximately 1-2 weeks of co-design workshops.
  • Allow more time if your segmentation requires more participants to get a representative sample.Time to synthesise what you learn into insights and onto the journey itself. 3 days – 1 week.You may opt to run modified Delphi sessions where each subsequent co-design session builds on and edits the previous one–so you are essentially always working on the one map.Add 3-5 days to make a legible and shareable electronic or print deliverable.
$$$ Customer data represented but highly dependent on recall. Detail of real time customer experience e.g. with a specific touchpoint or episode may be lost.
JTBD switch interviews with customers Recounted experience. Customers who have very recently switched to your product or away you’re your product to a competitor.
One researcher. Note taker optional.
3-5 weeks
  • 1-2 weeks to recruit participants.
  • Allow more time in recruitment to get the exact customers you need.1-2 weeks of research depending on the number of participants in your study. Synthesis is streamlined with JTBD Four Forces diagram and customer timelines.Great research technique to support agile teams in iterative rounds of discovery or development. Applicable to a buying journey only.
$$$ Customer data represented but dependent on recall. Skilled interviewer should be able to elicit detail of real time customer experience of a specific touchpoint or episode.
Contextual interviews and/or longitudinal diary studies with customers Recounted or directly observed experience.Qualitative insights.Can dig deep into quite low level detail and describe context of use of example touch points. Customers who have recently or are currently going through the experience.
A representative sample for each customer segment.
A team of researchers. 2-4 depending on the number of customers.
8-12 weeks
  • Worthy investment for strategic projects
  • Resource intensive approach to follow-up with participants.
  • Compelling when paired with quantitative research to size findings.
$$$$$ Requires large investment and results are not actionable for some time but end result is credible research report usable by both executive and operational teams.

Conclusion

As with anything, there are trade offs involved. A well researched and high detailed journey will certainly stand the test of time, be useful to multiple audiences, and be a persuasive research piece to support change. It all depends on your project needs and constraints. The 80/20 rule may also apply—making smaller investments with Jobs-to-be-Done research or co-design workshops may yield most of the major insights you need to uncover for significantly less cost and time.

[hr]

Update:
I have made a some updates since first publishing this post. Thanks to Krispian Emert for your valuable feeback.

Categories
Events Service design

Two new categories announced for the 2015 Good Design Awards

The Good Design Awards have a new website and are open for submissions. Interestingly, there are two new categories recognising the expanding role and remit of design: Social Innovation and Business Model Design.

The awards will tie in with the VIVID Festival later in the year so stay tuned for more announcements.

Categories
Service design

Design for social good and be in the running for a trip to Japan

A little bit like IDEO’s HCD connect the British Council have announced a new competition for social, creative and critical thinkers to tackle social challenges.

British Council elevate

The first challenge is the STARTWELL™ Challenge to re-imagine play:

  • What if, as a child, you weren’t able to play outside?
  • What happens when technology trumps trees?
  • What do we do with unused spaces and objects?
  • What does play in the 21st century really look like?

Successful applicants get to work with local and international innovation and design experts and will be in the running to attend a 6 day ELEVATE Innovation Camp with fellows from around the world being held in Japan. JAPAN!!

http://www.britishcouncil.org.au/programmes/arts/elevate

Categories
Service design

Keep the Change #2

Interesting to see Dymocks appropriate Ideo’s “Keep the Change” program for the Bank of America as a fundraising initiative. (Having said that I am only assuming they have taken inspiration from it.)

image

image

If you haven’t heard of the program it’s a classic case study in Design Thinking. Based on ethnographic research they applied an existing customer behaviour, of rounding up transactions to the nearest dollar,  as a way to encourage people to save into a transaction account.

Check it out, and maybe buy a book at Dymocks too.

References
Dymock’s children’s charities http://dcc.gofundraise.com.au

Ideo’s case study http://www.ideo.com/work/keep-the-change-account-service-for-bofa/

Fast Company Ideo’s profile http://m.fastcompany.com/713911/fast-50-2008-ideo