It might sound obvious but the end of every customer journey mapping project raises the same question; what do we do now?
This is born, in large part, out of the sheer diversity and volume of change opportunities Customer Journey Mapping uncovers. For us the answer is determined principally by the organisation’s capacity for change, and its ambition.
To help management think through their next steps we highlight these four options. They are not mutually exclusive. You can do just one or take on several in conjunction. Each has an important role to play and each provides value. Continued below…
Promote your findings
Many people assume that if implementation does not start in short order the project has failed. This can be far from the truth. Many companies are simply too stretched to realistically take on yet more change.
Mapping highlights the opportunities for improvement and the scale of change required. It creates a stake in the sand allowing you to track and explore important issues that emerge. It can play a huge role in shaping future decision making.
If the organisation is too stretched to take on more change now the project still has an important role to play. That is to keep the insights from the mapping alive, promote and update your findings so that corporate amnesia does not wipe out the lessons you have learnt.
Most organisations do have the capacity to at least take on 1 or 2 quick wins that come from the mapping. These should be ‘no regret’ changes that can be completed in 3 to 6 months. Choose projects that can be delivered by a single, capable team that supports the change and has the capacity to act.
Although quick wins may have a limited impact they can be highly symbolic. Most importantly they create momentum and build confidence that mapping can indeed drive customer centric improvement.
Revisit your maps
Having invested time in creating Customer Journey Maps it pays huge dividends to reconvene the same team every 6 months. Revisit the maps and review new insight that you can add to the map such as new CX KPIs or research with Personas, Progress that has been made on changing the Customer Journey and any blocks that are preventing change.
Publish revised maps after each of these reviews and use them as a living record of the end-to-end customer experience.
More ambitious than quick wins these should still be tightly defined projects that can be delivered (primarily) within existing resource and that require limited cross-functional involvement. This last stipulation helps reduce complexity, minimise the project management load and increase the chances of success.
Look for projects that can be delivered in no more than 12 to 18 months.
These CX improvement projects should offer defined, tangible business benefits but they will also give teams the opportunity to develop new skills. Lean techniques like collaborative design, iterative testing and UX can all play a part.
Often these projects will impact business critical processes and so a pilot and roll-out approach is generally the default for these projects.
Organisations striving to substantially transform customer experience and reduce effort (for staff and customers) will look to a programme of projects; many of them cross-functional in nature.
These aim to reach deep into the organisation impacting culture and behaviours. Inevitably internal communications are a key component as are programme management skills, dedicated resource, a governance structure and MI to track progress.
Programmes will typically have a two or three year plan, but many will be ongoing with the intention of becoming incorporated into BAU over time.