Customer Journey Mapping

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Alex Turkovic
Alex Turkovic Member Posts: 61 Expert
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edited July 2020 in Value Realization

In my career, I've facilitated several in-depth Customer Journey Mapping exercises, where I take a group of cross-functional delegates offsite for a day or two. In these sessions, the goal is to:

  1. Map out the entire customer flow, starting with marketing and pre-sales all the way through to long-term relationship management. This usually takes the form of a massive flow chart.
  2. Identify issues in the journey (both internally and for the customer) and identify process improvement projects which can be run over the course of the coming quarter or two.

Every time I've run these workshops, the outcome has been quite inspiring as it helps to ease common customer frustrations, helps teams assimilate and remove silos and plugs revenue leaks in the form of churn reduction/customer retention.

There's obviously a lot of detail I left out above, but I'm curious from this group: Is anyone else facilitating sessions like this? What have you found to be most successful? Are you using any tools to help you?

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  • Kevin Mitchell Leonor
    Kevin Mitchell Leonor Member Posts: 248 Expert
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    edited June 2020
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    I've been engaging in white board sessions and experimenting with a concept that would allow us to customize/reprioritize certain outcomes along the journey map while still maintaining scalability among thousands of accounts.

  • Iman Omari
    Iman Omari Member Posts: 3 Navigator
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    edited June 2020
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    I am just embarking on this exercise of defining our customer journey and to simplify the task, I have broken down the exercise into the below three primary tasks 

    1. Defining the customer life cycle stages 

    2. Decide on customer segmentation. For my organization the criteria that made sense for segmentation was mostly (ARR, Product, CHI, life cycle stage, use case, growth potential). Ideally a segmentation that has the customer in mind, should be based on customers' needs. 

    3. Create journey maps for each stage of the life cycle per segment. (for example : Risk mitigation journey map for enterprise customer, adoption journey map for Mid market, implementation journey map for Enterprise customers, etc ) 

    When we create these journeys, we need to be mindful of how it impacts customer experiences and how it aligns the different functional teams on customers expectations and priorities so these are not lost in transitions and handovers. 
     

  • David Ellin
    David Ellin Member Posts: 170 Expert
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    edited June 2020
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    @Alex Turkovic, I've also done collaborative journey mapping activities but haven't taken teams offsite. I like the idea.

    One think that has brought me some value is sharing the journey map with select customers and asking them what we missed (from their perspective). We've never gotten it completely right and customers have always added a few things we've missed.

    Customers appreciate being part of the conversation and it builds partnership as well as learning opportunities.

  • Joran Hofman
    Joran Hofman Member Posts: 2 Navigator
    edited June 2020
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    We are now going to do this and having an offsite is a great idea. It delivers outcome a lot quicker + get everyone alligned a lot more. 

    At the moment we are sending out messages from 4/5 different systems so a session like this would be very beneficial for sure. Good idea. 

  • Alex Turkovic
    Alex Turkovic Member Posts: 61 Expert
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    edited June 2020
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    Awesome @Joran Hofman  ! Please let me know if you need any advice or tips on setting up and facilitating the event. I've learned a few things over the course of running a few of these events that might help you out. Feel free to book some time on my calendar if you like: https://calendly.com/alex-turkovic/30min

  • Alex Turkovic
    Alex Turkovic Member Posts: 61 Expert
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    edited June 2020
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    I couldn't agree more @David L Ellin ! I've done this in the past as well, however with a watered down version of the map, as to not completely reveal all of the internal challenges taking place. ;-) 

    I think having a standing Customer Advisory Board is a perfect audience for this sort of thing. Or perhaps reaching out to a few customers who have recently completed their onboarding experience could be beneficial to capture current state.

  • Alex Turkovic
    Alex Turkovic Member Posts: 61 Expert
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    edited June 2020
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    You make some excellent points @Iman Omari .  

    When I've done this in the past, I've ended up with maps for each customer segment. Each map shares certain elements, but to your point, a mid market flow might be completely different from that of an enterprise customer. 

    I would caution against having many different maps. I'm in favor of very detailed maps per segment which highlight each stage clearly. Tools like draw.io are fantastic at allowing you to structure your flow chart however you like and with as much detail as you like - while utilizing simple zoom features to get as micro or macro as you like. 

    Good luck!

  • Anna Alley
    Anna Alley Member Posts: 70 Expert
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    edited June 2020
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    We've had a few different attempts at Journey mapping. The sessions normally go really well: cross-functional, great discussion, but then we've struggled with actually using those journey maps after the sessions. Any tips or tricks on what to do after you have the journey map completed?

  • Alex Turkovic
    Alex Turkovic Member Posts: 61 Expert
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    edited June 2020
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    YES! ...and I've encountered the same. The actual 'workshop' itself is usually not the issue, but the implementation of what was discussed during the session can be the most difficult aspect of it. This is to nobody's fault in particular. We all have our 'normal' jobs that get hectic and this sort of thing can be the first thing to get de-prioritized. 

    Here are a couple of tips I can suggest:

    • Executive Buy-In: Get C-level engagement prior to the event by presenting some goals you'd like to achieve, and then commit the team to providing regular updates. This will help keep you and everyone else engaged.
    • Ground Work: Prior to and during the session, ensure that everyone knows what they are signing up for by participating. This includes the long-term engagement on process improvement projects that will come out of the session.
    • Run it like a project team: Treat the outcome of the session as if it were a team of project managers with a pre-defined project charter. Everyone should be assigned ownership of various work-streams as make sense and should be held accountable to defining the desired outcomes, task and timelines for each project.
    • Regular Meetings: I've found that a bi-weekly cross-functional meeting cadence is quite effective to not take up a bunch of time but to keep everyone engaged. In this meeting, all project owners discuss the progress on their particular workstreams and use the meeting to ask for help and/or clear any roadblocks they have encountered.

    I hope this helps. Feel free to setup some time with me if you like. I'd be happy to rap about it with you. https://calendly.com/alex-turkovic/30min

  • Iman Omari
    Iman Omari Member Posts: 3 Navigator
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    edited June 2020
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    Thanks Alex for sharing your thoughts. That's helpful. I will also look at draw.io , that could be very helpful . One thing that I would like to ask you or someone who has implemented a journey map is,  what is the best way to operationalize it ?  Not only in terms of  technology but also in terms of getting all stakeholders teams aligned and on board with these maps

  • Alex Turkovic
    Alex Turkovic Member Posts: 61 Expert
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    edited June 2020
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    It's a challenge for sure @Iman Omari - see my response below to Anna's question which details some of the things I've done myself. I'm sure the community might have additional insight. Happy to hop on a call with you to discuss if you like.