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How to sell digital projects to your boss


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Tips on visualising problems and selling the need for digital improvements to your boss in a way that allows them to sell it to their boss. A presentation to local government digital crew from around New Zealand at the ALGIM 2014 conference in Auckland.

How to sell digital projects to your boss

  1. 1. How to Sell Digital Projects to your Boss Visualising the way we work @starrjulie …and everyone else you work with
  2. 2. New Plymouth, New Zealand, February 2014
  3. 3. Got a parking ticket
  4. 4. A Reconstruction Paying my parking ticket online
  5. 5. CLICK I started with a search engine
  6. 6. I scrolled down the home page
  7. 7. CLICK
  8. 8. CLICK I see ‘parking tickets’. That looks promising.
  9. 9. Huh? It takes me a while to realise I’ve ‘landed’ on the same page
  10. 10. I notice a helpful looking image so I scroll for more
  11. 11. I see Parking Ticket. Yes! CLICK
  12. 12. Really? I have to promise not to break the system. Gosh.
  13. 13. Jump to the left A new window opens.
  14. 14. Oh… Here! Please use the ticket number….?
  15. 15. Maybe I’ll try… Erm? I typed it in wrong. Now what do I do?
  16. 16. What? No!!! Can’t use back button because I’m in a new window again.
  17. 17. So I start at the beginning …
  18. 18. 16Steps! … before I get anywhere near entering my credit card details
  19. 19. Sigh
  20. 20.
  21. 21. We want to make life better for users
  22. 22. Do what we’ve always done, but put it online too Online = Some people think
  23. 23. Do what we’ve always done, but throw it in an app Mobile = Some people think
  24. 24. Those people are wrong
  25. 25. Process for Sharing Council Minutes (for a long time)
  26. 26. Put the PDF online Process for Sharing Council Minutes (now)
  27. 27. PDF? Really? Does process give users what they want? No.
  28. 28. This is what a PDF looks like at readable size on a mobile phone. 22 pages of this?Accessible? NO!
  29. 29. “PDFs are where information goes to die”
  30. 30. free! Set the information
  31. 31. Responsive design won’t fix this problem. It’s a process problem.
  32. 32. We can’t do what we’ve always done and just ‘put it online’ at the end
  33. 33. It doesn’t work.
  34. 34. The Daily Telegraph London | 2006… Print team Web team
  35. 35. We needed to publish way more on our website
  36. 36. But we couldn’t afford to hire another 100 people
  37. 37. We had to look at the way we did things
  38. 38. The Daily Telegraph London | 2007 Integrated Web-and-Print Newsroom
  39. 39. A few things I learned about ‘selling digital’
  40. 40. Get serious
  41. 41. If you want people to take Digital seriously, you have to elevate the status of Digital in the organisation
  42. 42. Put the Head of Digital at the top of the org chart
  43. 43. Everyone should talk to Digital before they start any project anywhere
  44. 44. Intervene here Don’t just take what you’re given here & throw it online Output XML
  45. 45. Clout You need
  46. 46. Steal people who ‘get it’ and put them on the web team
  47. 47. Hire people who already know what they’re doing.
  48. 48. Don’t drownBreak it down
  49. 49. You have a world of problems to solve
  50. 50. Start
  51. 51. Improve something today + keep working on the big fix
  52. 52. We can simplify this process without going near the transaction engine
  53. 53. 1. Remove anchors, tighten text and let people scroll to those helpful images. 2. Link directly to parking ticket payment page. 3. Make ticket number entry box bigger and move up page. 4. If must have T&Cs put tick box here: ‘By using this service you agree to our T&Cs.’ Suggestion
  54. 54. Example of a simple but effective widget added to a page (not a big budget thing at all) s/environment-and- waste/rubbish-and-recycling
  55. 55. Visualise it Build, sketch, map Seeing is believing
  56. 56. We’ve been using pictures to communicate for a long time. It works.
  57. 57. “We show videos of struggling people to managers – way more effective in getting them to understand.” – Ruth Brown, Head of User Experience, TradeMe, ALGIM 2014
  58. 58. Problem Newspaper people didn’t see why the web should affect their daily routine
  59. 59. Really simplified overview of a day in the newsroom (for a long, long time)
  60. 60. Copy & paste/ import into website, autopublish at 5am
  61. 61. … what are people reading at 8am, 12pm, 5pm? If stories are filed at 6pm… Does process give readers what they want? No.
  62. 62. + Earlier start + Earlier conference + Better planning + Stories filed during day + Talk to Digital FIRST not last We started changing the way we did things. (Still a long way to go.)
  63. 63. Problem Skilled designers spent hours each day assembling the puzzles page
  64. 64. Draw it & boss immediately understands how convoluted the process is
  65. 65. Problem We got stuck on the differences between web and print publishing
  66. 66. Print Publishing Process (Top Level Snapshot) So we drew the print publishing process…
  67. 67. Web Publishing Process (Top Level Snapshot) … and the web publishing process…
  68. 68. Combined Web-and-Print Publishing Process (Top Level Snapshot) …and put it all together. See it. Build on commonality. Eliminate nonsense.
  69. 69. Problem Newspaper people didn’t understand what website people were talking about
  70. 70. De-mystify. Have workshops. Make posters! Share what you know.
  71. 71. Put some numbers around it Make your case more convincing Be Specific
  72. 72. “Everyone’s got smartphones so we should totally do something for mobile.”
  73. 73. “Over half of visits to TradeMe are on Mobile – and it’s still growing.” - Ruth Brown, Head of User Experience, TradeMe, ALGIM 2014 “68% of NZ internet users connected through their mobile phone in the past year – 48% through a tablet.” - World Internet Project NZ Report 2013
  74. 74. Write for your Audience Relevant Accessible Attention
  75. 75. How does this project benefit my boss?
  76. 76. …want this project Boss is responsible for… CUSTOMERS Boss’s Job Title Annual Plan
  77. 77. Those are your keywords right there
  78. 78. How can I help my boss sell this to their boss?
  79. 79. Use Plain English Accessibility
  80. 80. We’re going to mumble scrape mumble backend and parse mumble mumble Hadoop mumble mumble Heartbleed and ruby mumble responsive mumble parallax and SVG mumble html5
  81. 81. Make it easy for customers to pay a bill on their mobile & computer
  82. 82. Visuals Numbers Words Great. Now your boss can explain it to their boss
  83. 83. One more challenge
  84. 84. onepageAll the bosses are busy Attention
  85. 85. Get Serious elevate status of Digital Don’t drown break it down Visualise it build, sketch, map Put some numbers around it be convincing Write for your audience relevant, Plain English One page hold attention
  86. 86. Thanks! www:// @starrjulie