Project Management

At Your Service: Building Customer Experience Into Digital Products

Kate Rockwood

In today's hyper-connected world, digital project missteps can be amplified in seconds. Products can be doomed before there's even a chance to fix them when rankled customers rake project teams over the coals on social media.

Case in point: Poncho the weather bot, a chatbot created last year for Facebook's Messenger platform. Poncho used artificial intelligence to serve up cheeky answers to questions about the weather. But as soon as it debuted, many customers took to Twitter, posting screenshots showing how the technology in many cases failed to comprehend customers' questions.

Such glitches can have crippling consequences for customer loyalty: One in four customers will discontinue use of a product after just one bad touch point, according to McKinsey's The CEO Guide to Customer Experience. But that risk can be mitigated if project managers weave customer insights and needs into the core of projects from the start.

Processes through which the customer experience is incorporated into product development can within two to three years buoy revenue by 5 to 10 percent while trimming costs as much as 25 percent, according to McKinsey. For project leaders, identifying customer pain points and developing new testing approaches helps to ensure solutions are integrated into user requirements—and the final product. Organizations can leverage customer …

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"He who asks is a fool for five minutes, but he who does not ask remains a fool forever."

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