With the pace of business increasing, and the time to market of disruptors decreasing, it’s easy to feel like you just can’t keep up. But in a busy business environment, not keeping up simply isn’t an option – so what do you do?
Anyone that’s faced this dilemma in a commercial context will be familiar with the ‘iron triangle’ – speed, quality and cost. You can get two out of the three but no more! So, the business sacrifices having the best quality product or experience for its customers to ensure speed and affordability. Or, they bring a high-quality product to market, but at a snail’s pace.
Now, I’m not going to claim to have broken the iron triangle, but there is a way to sacrifice less. By combining a low code approach to development using a Multi-Experience Development (MXD) platform with a Human-Centric Experience Design (HXD) framework, it is possible to achieve the right results at light speed.
Why the right results matter
What do I mean when I say the right results? Isn’t the right result just a fulfilled requirement and a positive impact on the bottom line?
You could build an application or a feature to solve a specific problem raised by your customers. Let’s say, for example, a requirement for a self-service chatbot function, following customer feedback that it’s hard to find the information they need, or they can’t get through to your customer service. You implement this feature in the next release, but the app store reviews don’t improve, retention doesn’t increase and your customer base doesn’t grow. However, you don’t lose any money on the development as you used an internal development team, and maybe you see that there are fewer abandoned transactions. So, you see a small positive impact on the bottom line.
But is that enough? Is that time and resource well spent? Overall, you haven’t gained much.
‘We did what they asked! We implemented what they wanted!’ I hear you protest!
Yes, that’s all very good – but did you do what they needed?
You can’t always get what you want, but sometimes you get what you need
Let’s revisit our chatbot example. A product manager has seen the feedback and surmised that this problem could be solved with a chatbot feature, which incorporates a search function and provides a ‘contact’ for the customer to make them feel heard and cared for.
And yes, it can. But the real problem here isn’t actually solved by this chatbot, because it runs much deeper.
Your customer service staff are struggling to keep up with calls, meaning that customers can’t get through. Why is that? Are they using disparate and disjointed systems? Do these systems have bad user interfaces, making it hard to navigate at speed?
Meanwhile, the information on the customers’ application is difficult to find – has the UI been designed correctly? Does it conform to accessibility standards? Does it respond to different screen sizes? Is the database feeding the application correctly configured? Is there information customers need that is missing entirely? How is the application maintained and updated? Could that be automated, or made easier?
In this example, if design thinking is applied, we might actually conclude that the user personas to focus on are actually the customer serviceperson and the product manager for the application. If we make their jobs easier and smoother, then customer experience improves.
Of course, you can always implement the chatbot as an immediate but temporary fix, but if you don’t identify the real problem and fulfil the real needs at hand, then the value of development will be limited. It might do its job, it might solve the problem that was presented. But it won’t wow, impress, or innovate.
Equally, if the wrong user persona is chosen as the focus point for improvements, adoption and impact might also be limited. This is why a methodology like Fujitsu’s HXD and our experts come in handy – we can guide you through processes and help you to avoid pitfalls or blind alleys.
Using design thinking, asking why and seeking out the right user persona can help you to take your development to the next level. With it, you can make sure your applications deliver out of this world user experience, especially when combining these learnings with the capabilities of Multi-Experience Development platforms (MXDPs)
Engaging the warp drive
What if you’re already using design thinking methodologies? What’s the benefit to adopting MXD on top of that, and why do the two marry well together?
Design thinking and Multi-Experience Development are a great combination, because the use of low code tooling means development can happen up to eight times quicker. Without design thinking, there’s real potential for the development to head in the wrong direction, at tremendous pace. While this isn’t necessarily a project-ending problem as the changes can be rolled back due to the inbuilt capabilities of the platform, it’s a waste of the efficiency gains.
In our project with Rock2Recovery, we found that a day of design thinking, in a virtual workshop, was critical to the delivery of a successful working solution in just five days. Without building a common understanding between the business and the development team, we could have easily hurtled towards the wrong results at an alarming speed. As it happened, the development effort delivered the right results, at light speed.
To hear first-hand from Rock2Recovery patron Charlie Hobson, view our virtual break-out session here.