Great CX Work Mitigates Business Risk
Finding and Solving Problems Before They Happen
Many companies face their risks reactively. They assume all is well until enough customer complaints come in or sales admits they’re having trouble selling the product. We’ll need to put new work on hold and fix the old features or product. You might be surprised by customers rejecting what you deliver and by what it costs to fix, assuming it can be fixed versus having to be scrapped or undone. If you are reactive, you might be out of touch with customers.
Great CX workers and processes foresee risks and address many before they happen, saving your company time, money, bruised brand perception, customer service nightmares, and other issues caused by faulty or disappointing products, services, and experiences (PSE).
CX should also document predicted risks more often so that should the CX work be skimped on or circumvented, when metrics are reviewed later, we would be able to demonstrate that we had documented certain negative outcomes as likely to occur. The hope there is that if there is a next time, someone decides to give CX a little extra time and budget rather than cutting either and facing the risks.
This is where your predictive risk management comes into play. You absolutely want smart experts who are able to foresee future negative events and drive the PSE in better directions earlier.
Risks CX Is Excellent at Predicting
Building the wrong products, services, and experiences (PSE)
When our PSE have gone in the wrong direction, those external to our company notice… from customers to competitors to the press to stock markets.
The cost to undo or redo software is high, but the costs can be truly off the charts when we imagine building the car nobody wants, setting up your store in the wrong neighborhood, or offering a service few people sign up for.
The risk is even higher when our PSE are life or death such as military systems, hospital equipment, or airplanes. We cannot prioritize speed of market delivery over how easy and fast these systems are to use, how they were designed to keep people from making mistakes, and how efficiently customers can accomplish their tasks.
Burning Engineering time and money
Most software development methodologies are putting nearly their entire focus on measurable elements like velocity, efficiency, and productivity. Is your company also measuring what it costs to create sub-standard PSE, to diagnose the problems after the public gets stuck with it, and then the costs to undo and redo our mistakes? Great CX will save Engineering and other teams time, money, and sanity.
Causing customers frustration, confusion, disappointment, and distraction, The Four Horsemen of Bad CX (TM)
Are you continuously releasing junk? Even if we are on the right track with product vision, we might still be rushing out flawed interfaces, screens, and steps, confusing menus, bad search results, slow sites, and poor in-person experiences. As a customer yourself, you know that when PSE gives you a negative experience, it can range from annoying to relationship-destroying.
CX is make or break for our customers. It’s what we offer and deliver. Customers don’t care if we were Agile, Lean, or had 1000 developers. They only care about our PSE feeling easy, solving their problems, and giving them what they need at prices they’re willing to pay.
Burning money on customer support, social media managers, and others that calm and help customers
What happens when we offer or deliver PSE that summon The Four Horsemen of Bad CX? People need help. That taxes our customer support teams (phone, email, chat, etc.) and may require mobilizing our social media managers to respond to confused, angry, or vicious posts. We may even think we have to hire more people in these areas to handle the volume of problems and complaints. We might need to engage with a PR pro or agency to help us spin some mistakes we made.
Design, build, and release better PSE and you should require fewer support rep hours and danger money, not more.
Marketing is wasted and sales can’t sell this
Endless marketing budgets, mountains of fantastic SEO, paid placements, and influencers are often part of the marketing strategy. What is the real cost of these when our PSE is flawed or a mismatch for our target audiences? Your sales team knows the answer to that. They are desperate for marketing to bring them more leads only to find out that conversion is incredibly difficult and increasingly rare.
Nearly every company on the planet has competitors; why should customers choose you? If your system is outdated, lacking features, disorganized, or difficult to use, sales will tell you we are bleeding customers and/or having trouble winning new ones.
Low morale and high employee turnover
If the workplace culture is negative or toxic, especially where we haven’t defined our values and hired for them, we run the risk of low morale and workers trying to leave. When teams continually release flawed or failing PSE and are often in crisis mode, workers become flight risks. The time and money spent on replacing talented workers and the negative ripple effects of employee churn are expensive risks.
Business goals and customer goals being out of alignment
There shouldn’t be a disconnect between what stakeholders want for customers and what customers want for themselves. Customers are unlikely to change their goals and tasks; this means the business must be more Agile and shift in response to what we learn about current and potential customers.
UCD Is Fluid, Flexible, and Can Be Modified to Match Each Project
CX experts already working within UCD (User-Centered Design) know that it’s not an all-or-nothing process. There are many times that we skip steps or tasks for good and bad reasons, including they’re not needed for this project or fix, or there’s no time, budget, or resources. Therefore, when UCD is done well, CX experts are strategizing each project to decide which tasks will be done, selecting tasks based on what fits the project best. In that sense, it can never be bloated.
The key to great CX and doing UCD well is to have the expertise and experience to strategically select what will get this project done efficiently but thoroughly and correctly. We are grounded in proper research, and we hire action heroes who know how to adjust the process to fit the project and situation. Delta CX uses our core principle of the cambiata to allow ourselves to be nonlinear and skip around UCD tasks and processes based on the strategy we decide will work best for this project. The cambiata reminds us to be agile and change direction as soon as we have good information that informs us of a better path.