tion develops healthcare IT solutions for doctors, nurses and patients. “It’s not
unusual to invite users to participate in kickoff meetings and to explain their
point of view,” he says.
Besides interviewing customers, teams can discreetly observe them. For
instance, while developing software for a hospital emergency room, Mr. Bellifemine’s team monitored interactions among doctors and nurses. The team
studied their common traffic patterns and how doctors and nurses interacted
with patients. “It’s critical to observe their internal processes and design a product that follows their user experience,” he says.
But customer input that adds value can be leveraged well before project
teams engage customers, says Kathryn Rutkowski, PMP, senior manager for
productivity in technology optimization, Westpac Group, Sydney, Australia.
Ms. Rutkowski starts digital projects by analyzing relevant customer complaints
data. For instance, social media can be a source of customer pain points that,
depending on the project, can provide useful problem-solving input.
“If you dig into the data, customers are giving you free feedback that can be
hugely valuable to the project,” she says. She examines customer needs—both
expressed and unexpressed—to form a high level understanding, and then dives
deeper into requirements.
“Customer centricity ensures that the project is delivering something that
your customer will use because it solves a problem for them and also for potential customers you don’t have yet,” she says.
Pain points are the kryptonite of a great customer experience. Teams can better
identify and understand the customer problems the project is intended to solve
with tools such as value stream mapping (a lean technique), customer journeys,
empathy mapping and customer complaints analysis, Ms. Rutkowski says.
experience into product
development can buoy
5 to 10 percent
within two to three
“Customer centricity ensures that the project is delivering
something that your customer will use because it solves a problem
for them and also for potential customers you don’t have yet.”
—Kathryn Rutkowski, PMP, Westpac Group, Sydney, Australia