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HCD Foundations and Frameworks

3.3 Launch an Enterprise Journey Mapping Project

Oftentimes, clients conduct a session of hypothesis mapping and feel they are ready to make immediate changes. The excitement is valid, but the journey is not. More often than not, there are major instances of actual customer feedback challenging the hypothesis created by your organization’s most informed employees. A real journey map is a multi disciplinary and multi phase effort. It requires site visits, 1 on 1 interviews, analyzing surveys, and perhaps taking an inventory of all your touch points. It can take anywhere from 3-9  months for a thorough journey map that can be operationalized for use. 

Portlandia: The cellphone buying experience.

3.3.1 Best Practices for Enterprise Journey Mapping

  1. Journey mapping starts with understanding who your customers are. Do not begin journey mapping without having done the legwork to properly identify, analyze, and segment your customers.
    1. Select the right first customer: Selecting the right customer is no easy feat because customers have varying levels of interest and influence over your organization’s strategic or  growth objectives. The bigger objective is that your organization understands all the customers of this market segment better than your competitors. And, that in perfecting the journey of this first customer, you can move on to acquire other desired customers. 

Be cautious of not focusing on the right customers by recognizing and managing these traits:

  1. The Enthusiastic but Uninfluential: It’s not that enthusiasm in it of itself isn’t very valuable. It is that it can lead initiatives astray if you add features or invest in those who show enthusiasm but may not contribute to overall success.
  2. The Influential but Unenthusiastic: Especially in technology, a generational gap means that those who are making the decisions are likely to be less interested in contributing to the process or help make creative decisions toward improvement. 
  3. The Vocal Minority: Those whose input are collected and measured disproportionately more than their opinions are applicable. Designing for those who are the most frustrated will not yield better results, but could send signals of urgency to the wrong thing first. 
  4. The Beginner: Often times, those who are available to engage may not have the seniority or systematic awareness. However, their insight will bring a fresh perspective that can help immediately identify what more “experienced” people might have gone “nose-blind,” to.

Best Practices Continued…

  1. Select the Right Journey: From the hypothesis and discovery phase, select a journey that is operationally the most meaningful to understand. This could be one that may be struggling in various ways or one whose silos have prevented a journey-view of the process. 
    1. The right journey for your organization is one whose multiple touch points associated in the end-to-end is the one you’d like to own and improve completely.
    2. The right journey is also one you currently have the most influence over and is descriptive of many of the products and services that you have to offer. 
  2. Select a Framework: There are many different configurations of a journey map. What you choose depends on the purpose and scope of the project. 
  3. Divide and Conquer: Journey maps may require your organization to venture into uncharted territories both geographically and interpersonally. Remember, it is not linear and you may have to go through many cycles to complete one segment of a major journey. For example, in a journey map of the patient may include multiple interviews at patients going through different phases of the journey. The entire journey for a single dialysis patient, from the emergency room visit to the diagnosis to treatment and follow up, can be years long. 
  4. Bring it all Together: In conducting interviews or collecting the data necessary for a big journey map, the team will have to come together to compile it into a visual journey map. Many organizations use large format plotters to display the journey map in their offices so that those who pass by the map in the organization can have a visual reminder that our goal is to help achieve an improved journey of the customer. One of the major things to keep in mind is that the completion of a journey map is only the beginning of the actual journey to customer centric service design. 

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