Mapping out customer experience excellence: 10 steps to customer journey mapping
Customer journey mapping could hold the key to analysing and improving the customer experience. Only recently, a report from the Cabinet Office recommended CJM for authorities to provide a more efficient and cost-effective service. Arne van Oosterom outlines how it can help organisations - and lists the 10 key ingredents to a customer journey map.
A product or service is merely a means to an end. The real deeper value lies in the story attached.
I don’t want to own a coffee maker - I need to wake up early with a little help from a cup of coffee. I don’t want to use a train - I want to get home to my wife and children. I don’t want to go to a store and buy a stereo set - I just want to listen to my favourite rock music when I’m home, it makes me unwind after work.
- Context or stakeholder map. We list all stakeholders and we order the hierarchy in circles of influences around the centre, where you are. When working with customers you’ll have the customer in the centre. Describe all relationships on the map by answering the question: what do we do for them; what do they do for us? This map shows you the landscape or force field you are dealing with. And you can discuss how this influences the quality of your work and how a customer benefits or suffers from it.
- Persona. We need a rich customer profile or persona. Describe his/her personal and business situation now (present situation) and in the future (ambitions).
- Outcomes. A description of his/ her desired outcome - what is he/she trying to achieve?
- Customer journey. We list all actions (as far as possible) the customer has to take to reach the outcome (placed in a horizontal line). Don’t start listing actions when the customer uses your service the first time. Start before the moment he/she decided to use your product or service. This way we visualise behavioural patterns.
- Touchpoints. Underneath every action we list all channels and touchpoints services the customer encounter. Not just yours! This way you’ll discover the landscape you are in form the customer’s perception.
- Moments of truth. Then we identify the moments the customer encounters your touchpoints and channels. We start focus on those (you can move them down a bit). Identify the most important 'moments of truth'.
- Service delivery. Underneath every touch point, we write down who delivers the service. Who is directly responsible for it (e.g. front office personal)?
- Emotional journey. Then give every vertical line a grade for the experience (Actions -> touch point -> who delivers the service -> grade). Don't grade the functionality, grade the work. For the emotion, how do you think the customer felt at that moment? Use a scale from 0 to 10. The higher the number, the better the experience. This can be visualised (e.g. by a line going up and down), and is very effective as a conversation starter. It can often be a real eye-opener.
- Blueprint. Now, to make a long story a bit shorter, we can go on listing the organisation underneath, writing down who supports the people delivering the service (backoffice), and in turn who influences the back office (we link back to the stakeholders map), until we have a complete organisational blueprint, a complete picture of the working of an organisation and emotional journey, from the outside in.
- Improve and innovate. Use creative, brainstorming and any other ideation techniques for the service opportunities you identified (low grades) and/or design complete new and ideal journeys or services. This usually is the moment people have the most fun. I have been surprised many times by the talent and eagerness of people to engage in this creative process. People are usual a lot more creative than you think. We just need to put them in the right situation and mood.