Categories
Events Research

JTBD for Health meetup wrap-up

Last Monday saw a great crowd of almost 30 people turn up at Brain Mates to hear Justin Sinclair of Neo speak about a health case study at the JTBD Sydney Meetup.

Justin shared how Jobs-to-be-Done research was applied to investigate customer needs and behaviour when choosing a health provider. His client had hit a crossroads in the development of an online solution for provider selection and decided that some customer centred research was needed.

Some background to JTBD (and the case-study)

For those unfamiliar with JTBD, it is a research technique that focuses on the moment where a customer has made an explicit choice to switch between one product or service to another. The underlying rationale being that all priorities have been crystallised in this moment of decision making which can then, in turn, inform product development.

For the health study, Justin and his team from Neo recruited customers with a range of health needs who had chosen new providers.

The next fundamental concept of Jobs-to-be-done is the job itself which in JTBD terms is framed as a problem that a product or service is “hired” to solve.

The problems discovered in the health study went far broader than diagnosis and treatment. The problems involved the whole experience; some examples:

  • The convenience of location and appointment times.
  • Cost, and lack of information around insurance.
  • History of information with an existing provider as a reason to stay and a barrier to change.
  • Comfort, trust, and alignment of values between patients and health practitioners.
  • Questions of expertise and credentials of health practitioners.

The research successfully illuminated the customer journey. It also posed a challenge because the importance of all decision making factors and touchpoints varied significantly depending on whether the patient had chronic needs, a new serious illness, a minor illness or was simply organising a check-up.

Applying Jobs-to-be-Done to customer research

Jobs-to-be-Done was incorporated into the research discussion guide and all researchers received training in how to do a “switch interview”. Group analysis was done using the “Four Forces” model: looking at the forces driving a customer to a new solution and the forces that are holding them back.

In this case study two of the four forces in the framework – habit and anxiety – proved fundamental to understanding customer choices and the difficulty faced by the client’s solution in trying to solve far-ranging problems with their online product.

So consider for a moment that this approach seeks to find and define customer “jobs” in order to make products that do those jobs. What was most fascinating to me was hearing about the challenge the researches faced in framing the job at the right level. Defining the “job” too broadly, at too high a level, gets us insights that aren’t actionable. Defining a job too narrowly or specifically categorises customers by type and fails to capture the needs of the behaviour around the task or job of choosing a provider.

Interestingly for the client, the research brought into question the fundamental value that this product was bringing to the market. The product is now on hold maybe because of this insight: “Discovering a job isn’t enough if you can’t viably solve it.”

Questions from the audience

I think what I am beginning to like most about Jobs-to-be-Done is the diversity it attracts. We had user experience designers, product managers, and developers in the audience. Their questions reflected how diverse these disciplines can be in their approaches. We had side conversations about personas and the value of qualitative research versus quantitative research.

It’s difficult to baseline the understanding of such a wide audience with a new toolset. Jobs-to-be-Done is quite jargonistic to someone new to it. This made it all the more valuable to hear about it applied in practice and also shows how much awareness and education around this and related techniques are needed. Which is the reason for the meetup so come along to the next one Monday July 13.

The Jobs to be Done Sydney meet up was founded by Christian Lafrance and is organised by Christian and yours truly. 

Follow Justin Sinclair on Twitter at or check out where he works at Neo. Thanks to Justin and Neo for sharing your work at our meetup. 

New to Jobs-to-be-Done. Check out http://jobstobedone.org/

Thanks as ever to our hosts and event sponsors Brain Mates

Categories
The Work Experience

The case for privacy at work

If you find yourself unable to think in your open plan office you may be interested in reading this New York Times article The Rise of the New Group Think that argues the case for private space to be productive and creative.

Our offices should encourage casual, cafe-style interactions, but allow people to disappear into personalized, private spaces when they want to be alone.

Research backs it up:

Studies show that open-plan offices make workers hostile, insecure and distracted. They’re also more likely to suffer from high blood pressure, stress, the flu and exhaustion. And people whose work is interrupted make 50 percent more mistakes and take twice as long to finish it.

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/15/opinion/sunday/the-rise-of-the-new-groupthink.html?_r=2&pagewanted=all&

 

 

Categories
The Work Experience

More about why sitting for too long is bad for you

“Being sedentary for nine hours a day at the office is bad for your health whether you go home and watch television afterwards or hit the gym. It is bad whether you are morbidly obese or marathon-runner thin. It appears that what is critical and maybe even more important than going to the gym, is breaking up that sitting time.”

http://www.smh.com.au/lifestyle/life/sitting-is-the-new-smoking-20130529-2nca0.html

 

Categories
The Work Experience

Best Companies to Work For 2012 – Fortune Magazine

The reasons these companies have been nominated as great places to work by those that work there are:

  1. Good rewards
    • incentives, profit sharing, bonuses, above average pay for industry
  2. Strong and clear company mission
  3. Benefits
    • health insurance, health programs, childcare facilities, generous leave, workplace flexibility, other perks
  4. Physical work environment
    • food, access to services like dry cleaning, even walking tracks
  5. People
    • considered recruitment efforts, long tenure of employees
  6. Culture
    • recognition of excellence, adherance to, and evaluation based on values, fun incentives, games and events, happiness commitees, herograms, “no jerk” culture
  7. Feedback
    • Staff suggestions implemented, feedback mechanisms and forums in place
  8. Visible leadership
    • Leaders touching base with employees regularly or based on high performance of teams
  9. No layoffs
    • The US has faced tough economic times recently. Many companies on this list avoided lay-offs
  10. Career paths
    • Progression plans, internal promotion, investment in training and education
  11.  Acknowledging role of families
    • Inclusion of families in company events, acknowlegement of their contribution supporting employees

To see all the company snapshots go to: http://money.cnn.com/magazines/fortune/best-companies/2012/snapshots/1.html

Categories
The Work Experience

Accommodating the ageing workforce for productivity gains and knowledge transfer

In 2007, the luxury automaker set up an experimental assembly line with older employees to see whether they could keep pace. The production line in Dingolfing, 80km northeast of BMW’s Munich base, features hoists to spare ageing backs, adjustable-height work benches, and wooden floors instead of rubber to help hips swivel during repetitive tasks.

The verdict: Not only could they keep up, the older workers did a better job than younger staffers on another line at the same factory.

via stuff.co.nz
This is a great story about a problem faced by German motoring manufacturers. What to do about an ageing workforce (and a potential skills shortage?). Audi and BMW have both had success is redesigning the factory line to accommodate workers with innovations from harnesses to support backs and hips to screens with larger fonts. Older workers are also being paired with younger colleagues to transfer implicit knowledge. Service industries: take note.

http://www.stuff.co.nz/motoring/7651624/Never-too-old-changes-save-experienced-staff#

Categories
The Work Experience

Catalyst: Sitting is Deadly – ABC TV Science

I’ve posted a few stories on the stand up desk trend. Here’s the science story about the health problems caused by constant sitting from ABC’s Catalyst: http://www.abc.net.au/catalyst/stories/3568627.htm

You will also get a sneak peak into the open office/hot desking environment of the CBA designed to foster collaboration and innovation.