Future state journey mapping

Director of Customer Experience Research, VP at Bank of the West
Apr. 1, 2015
Future state journey mapping
Future state journey mapping
Future state journey mapping
Future state journey mapping
Future state journey mapping
Future state journey mapping
Future state journey mapping
Future state journey mapping
Future state journey mapping
Future state journey mapping
Future state journey mapping
Future state journey mapping
Future state journey mapping
Future state journey mapping
Future state journey mapping
Future state journey mapping
Future state journey mapping
Future state journey mapping
Future state journey mapping
Future state journey mapping
Future state journey mapping
Future state journey mapping
Future state journey mapping
Future state journey mapping
Future state journey mapping
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Future state journey mapping

Editor's Notes

  1. Good morning! My name’s Gina, and I have a confession. I’m a self-professed journey map addict. Seriously though, today I’m going to talk to you about one the most powerful tools we have as CX professionals. Developing a future state journey mapping process at my company has given me a seat at a table that I never had before. Prior to discovering this tool I was a UX Manager with a team primarily focused on designing digital experiences. I began to realize that my team could have a much broader influence. Future state journey mapping was the tool that gave me the opportunity to drive strategy, and now it’s a standard part of how my company develops our vision for new products, services, and experiences. By a show of hands, how many of you have created a journey map? Ok, keep your hands raised. Of those of you with your hand raised, how many of you have created a journey map of a future state experience? For those of you who don’t have your hand raised, I hope today will propel you to bring this technique to your organization. For those of you who have your hands up, I hope you’ll walk away with some new ideas for how to really maximize the value of your maps.
  2. Before I get started, I wanted to share a little bit about me and where I’m coming from.
  3. The focus of my talk today is not ‘how to’ create a journey map but rather how to really maximize the value of the maps you create. But I will first touch briefly on what a future state map is, why you should create these, and how to create them. We’ll then spend most of our time on an exercise where we’ll generate ideas together for how we can really put these maps to work in our organizations. And lastly, I’ll leave you with some tips to ensure your efforts are a success, and some key takeaways. And just a quick housekeeping note: You should have a couple handouts on your tables – we’ll use those a bit later for the exercise.
  4. Let’s start by talking about what I mean by future state journey mapping, and how these differ from many maps you see.
  5. Over the last two years I’ve spent a lot of time scouring the web for resources on journey mapping. There’s no shortage of articles and sample maps out there. One of the best resources I’ve found so far is this Pinterest page that compiles just tons of examples of journey maps. If you haven’t seen it, I highly recommend checking it out. However, what I’ve found is that most of the resources out there focus on using journey maps as a tool to illustrate how customers think and feel as they interact with your business today, highlighting things like high points, existing pain points, and then generating opportunities. There’s not as much guidance out there on how to use journey maps as a strategic future state design tool, or, put another way, to lay out the vision for a customer’s experience with a product or service.
  6. Now don’t get me wrong – current state journey mapping is an essential tool for any company. We’ve leveraged these maps quite a bit at Scottrade. For example last year we undertook an effort to map out the end-to-end experience of doing business with us through the lens of our five client personas. Here’s an example of this current state map. Mapping this current experience was a critical exercise both for gaining alignment around what the experience is but also for understanding the key moments, high points, and pain points our clients experience. An important element of these current state maps is that they are almost always (or they should be) grounded in research. In this case, we did an ethnographic in-home research study with 36 clients to inform the map.
  7. Part of what led me to start doing journey maps for future state experiences was that I found myself in a lot of situations like this. By a show of hands, how many of you have ever asked a group of leaders, “So, what’s your vision for this product?” How did that go? (pause and get a couple responses) For me, it starts OK, with one person articulating their vision, but then quickly becomes something like this, when they realize they’re not all aligned. Imagine if you could get everyone on the same page by focusing on what your new product or service needs to be for the customer. And then with this grounding in the customer experience, what if you could arrive at a point where everyone can align and work from a shared vision. That’s what future state journey mapping can help with.
  8. Future state journey mapping is….
  9. First and foremost, the value future state journey mapping provides is it keeps the focus on the customer. By mapping out the experience from the customer perspective, and leveraging things like personas to keep that focus throughout, it helps solve that problem I showed on the slide earlier where each of your stakeholders is trying to drive their own agenda. It’s a great tool to drive strategy – we’ve used this method to help our business leaders lay out how their strategy will impact the customer, and make adjustments once they see the actual impact it will have on the end customer. How many times have you wished you could just get someone to put pen to paper and articulate their vision for you? It’s tough. This is a tool that you can use to extract and articulate that vision. The map can be used to align the teams who will execute on the strategy, to ensure everyone is operating that common vision. Surface risks you need to mitigate. (key questions example – we recently had a project where we had to get something out the door to clients, and fast. Client experience was not the driver, and so we used this future state mapping process to lay out what the client experience would be, and also key questions clients would have at certain junctures. By surfacing those items they could be either mitigated or eliminated. Lastly, when done right this process can help control power dynamics by again, keeping the focus on your customer.
  10. There’s a few key things that make future state maps different from current state maps. Sometimes a future state map will derive from a current state map that was grounded in research. For example, if you map out the current experience customers have opening an account with your company, when designing the future state the pain points you uncovered can directly inform that future design. This is a great way to approach future state mapping. However, oftentimes, much research doesn’t even exist to inform future state maps. For example, if you’re conceiving of a brand new product your business hasn’t had before. An example of this at Scottrade was when we launched Scottrade Investment Management. This was the first time we offered managed accounts to our clients, so there was no current experience to look to. Which brings me to my next point – the business strategy is often the primary driver for future state maps. The business knows what they want to do, and you can use this tool to help articulate that strategy. This can be a powerful tool for giving them a visual of the strategy to react to. The focus of these maps is on laying out the vision for a new product service or experience. Lastly, future state maps include what do we desire the customer to do, think, and feel in this new experience. It’s not grounded in research, and it’s not fact, but it’s what we hope will happen if we all successfully execute on the experience.
  11. Here’s an example of a future state map we created at Scottrade. I’ve had to remove all the actual content, but the structure is intact. This was for a new managed account investment product we developed. Our goal was to extract and articulate the business strategy from the client’s perspective, creating a tool we would use to align and organize 13 work streams. We did a series of whiteboard sessions with 8 key business stakeholders to create this map together. We included things like the key steps the client takes, artifacts they interact with, what we hope they think/feel during each portion of the experience, and key steps our employees in our branches take that inform those client steps. Once created, this map was leveraged in weekly meetings with the workstream owners to discuss progress on delivering the various aspects of this experience.
  12. Here’s a slightly different example, that also included guiding principles that would drive the design of the experience. Our goal with this map was to adhere to our guiding principles to design a leading edge experience, kick start requirements, and educate candidate technology partners. We first developed the guiding principles with our stakeholders before we started to map out the experience, and it was pretty amazing to see the impact that aligning around a set of principles had. These were simple pillars, like ‘provide transparency throughout’. We then probably ended up conducting 10 hours of meetings to develop this experience together, and as we made decisions along the way we checked those back against our principles. It also made my job as the facilitator easier because if someone began suggesting something that would negatively impact the client experience I could bring them back to the guiding principles and encourage us to tackle it differently  This map also included things like high level requirements and action items. This helped our business strategy team drive next steps to achieve this experience we created together.
  13. Now, you can use future state journey mapping in some really interesting ways. For example, to develop the vision for how a conversation will go. I know, it sounds a little strange. But picture this scenario. You have 2000+ employees working in your branches who you’re about to put into a situation where they’re having conversations with clients about a topic they never talked about before. How do you get them on the same page? How do you help them understand how the customer should feel walking out of that conversation? Well, we decided to apply future state journey mapping to help. We got about 10 leaders in a room and hashed through what their vision for how these conversations would go. What happens before, during and after? What do we hope the customer feels? What do we hope they say to their spouse about that interaction when they get home that evening? You get the idea. This was then used by our training department to educate employees on how to conduct these conversations.
  14. I’ve shown you some examples and provided some reasons to do future state journey mapping. Now I’d like to touch just briefly on a process you can use to create these types of maps.
  15. Before you start mapping, it’s important to agree on these things. This includes where does the journey start and end? How will the map be used? For example, if the map will be used directly to drive project requirements, it may warrant more detail than if it will primarily be used as a tool to align executive leadership. Who are the people who have a stake in the experience? Things to think about here are involving front line associates who have direct interaction with your customers, maybe also including partners like technology, etc. This is key, before you gather your mapping group, to ensure you can use that time most effectively. This includes gathering existing research and data that should inform the journey, developing what I call a ‘skeleton map’ to work from based on what you know about the business’ vision for the experience. A starting point essentially. It’s critical that you map with your stakeholders. The conversation that takes place is often even more valuable than the map itself. With our mapping projects we typically do a series of workshops. And the buy-in we see as a result is key – everyone leaves these workshops feeling like they own the experience we want to deliver. Make sure you have a good visual designer on your team, as this next step is important. This is where you design the right visual to convey the future state journey. We find every map we design is a little bit different. For example, the level of detail will vary based on the objective and intended use of the map. There may be additional groups who you didn’t need in your workshops but need to review your map with before you finalize. An example of this at our company is Compliance. This is the right point to get buy in from those additional groups. Make sure it’s not just YOU, the CX person doing this. You need one of your key business stakeholders to champion the map. This is also where you may want to think about things like are there additional materials needed for certain audiences? We had a future state mapping effort where we ended up creating a ‘summary’ version of the map for our technology candidate vendors.
  16. In addition to the seven step process, I want to share some building blocks I recommend you consider including when creating a future state map. Some of these appeared in the examples I walked you through earlier. And again, the key is to know what purpose the map must serve, and who the audience is, and use these to drive the elements and level of detail you include.
  17. Now, on to the meat of the workshop. Once you’ve developed your future state map, how do you really put it work? I think many maps are underutilized. I went to a great talk at the Forrester CX Forum last year, where an analyst described journey maps as “the backbone of a CX program”. I couldn’t agree more. Particularly with future state maps I see huge opportunities to leverage these when delivering on the experiences they depict. And we’re going to do an exercise to explore how.
  18. You should all have copies of a high level journey on your tables. How many of you checked into a hotel last night? Like you all, I travel a lot. So I thought it might be fun to think about an ideal hotel check-in experience. I’ve taken the liberty in creating one for us to use for this exercise. We’re going to assume we all work for a hotel company. Our executive leaders have decided that this journey you have in front of you is what they want to deliver to customers in the future. Their focus is on a particular type of customer - Bill the business traveler. Bill is…. The guiding principles are…. And then you see the journey, which I’ll let you read through.
  19. You’ll have 10 minutes to work with your groups.
  20. You all just shared a lot of great ideas for how we can maximize the value of these maps. Here’s a few ideas I’ll leave you with based on how I’ve used these maps in my organization.
  21. The other teams you work with won’t necessarily know how to use these maps. Initially you’ll have to be aggressive in selling the value and also educating teams on how to use them. Don’t over-engineer. My biggest lesson learned after my first mapping project was that I need to ensure the level of detail is appropriate given the objectives of and anticipated usage of the map. Developing these maps requires a strong facilitator. Develop this skillset in your team if you don’t have it, or consider leveraging partners that do. As a CX professional you can only take a map so far. Ultimately, you need to assign an owner to the map and task them with putting it to work, so you can move on to the next strategic effort that can benefit from this process.
  22. Lastly, if you only take away three things from today’s workshop, here they are.
  23. For you reference, I’ve included a few of my favorite resources related to this topic.