A recent Harvard Business Review article began with the following: “If a UX feels more like ‘User Exploitation’ than ‘User Experience,’ business becomes ripe for disruption.”
This got me thinking: What do companies need to do to prove that they are focused on UX?
It’s one thing to say that UX is priority. It’s another thing to live and breathe UX every day. More importantly, it’s easy to commit to UX when there is an immediate and profitable impact, but another thing to invest in long-term strategies that champion UX over short-term gains. Like many things in life, taking shortcuts may help you reach your destination sooner, but you may end up irritating people and risk losing your integrity along the way. Never sacrifice values for deadlines.
The article reminds us that there aren’t exceptions to the rule: UX always comes first. And we couldn’t agree more.
How? It’s through constant measurement and refining the product based on those insights.
By doing so, companies can begin to observe the direct impact of a frictionless UX over time to make continuous improvements. This part of the article sums it up perfectly:
Entwining real-time data and predictive analytics lets serious organizations quickly calculate and calibrate trade-offs between experiential and exploitive UXs. Those trade-offs become explicit. Most everyone in the enterprise can now see where [users] are respected partners in value creation, and where they’re data-herded sheep to be sheared.
For unified communication platforms, this means regularly checking call volume, application downloads, amount of logins, minutes spent within the application, as well as additional metrics that can help showcase improved outcomes (e.g., sales, increases in productivity).
The path toward widespread adoption lies in a company’s commitment to tracking analytics over time to understand which aspects of a given platform resonate best, and then responding to that user behavior in kind. This iterative process is essential to UX, and data analytics can help build the case for product enhancements while also helping the enterprise understand where it needs to invest in more training and education to reach 100% adoption. It’s all about designing a product that people come to love, regularly use, and find complementary to their work routines.
It’s up to today’s CIOs and IT leaders to serve as change agents for today’s modern enterprise. These are the individuals that must accept the upfront risks that come with implementing new standards, processes, and technologies. As the article notes, “The leadership challenge around customer centricity will become sharper and starker both inside the enterprise and outside. Will business discipline revolve around optimizing UX for customer value? … How your organization defines and manages its receptivity/abandonment ratios will tell you the answers.”
The question then becomes: Are CIOs and IT leaders prepared to rise to the challenge?