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Monthly Archives: December 2014

Creative Communications Photo - Redesigned Customer Journey

The redesigned customer journey results in an improved customer mood. – Presentation by Robert Bloom, Partner/Founder DT Group and DT Academy


The Cape Craft and Design Institute (CCDI) is running a series of interesting events around Service Design.

At the CCDI business breakfast on Service Design Gillian Benjamin and Robert Bloom gave a comprehensive overview:

Service design is the premeditated design of customer experiences from beginning to end. It focuses on the interaction with customers, and will allow you to see ways of improving service and related customer experiences.

Service Design introduces new vocabulary such as Touchpoint and Customer Journey. With such it is quite a game changer in focussing further on customer satisfaction.


How can Service Design benefit your business or organisation?

Start seeing the Touchpoints, think of the memories you want to evoke:

  1. Really understand the customer: What really counts, major preoccupations, worries and aspirations.
  2. Understand customer pains, and make them easy.
  3. Understand the emotional bond between the brand and customer.
  4. Align the company actions to build emotional bonds
  5. Form a holistic, human centered view of the customer experience.


Prototyping helps you to fail early, it’s about learning from your mistakes. Where failure is generally regarded as negative, prototyping ensures you fail forward.

But how do you prototype a service?

  1. Understand your customer: Create persona profiles of your most active customers.
  2. Put yourself into the customer’s shoes: Think of a great service experience. What made it great?
    • A smile: the human touch
    • Turning an order into a present: expectations met and exceeded
    • Clear information delivery: empowerment through transparency
    • Super fast transactions: speedy turnaround
    • Quick production line: no more waiting
    • Turning a complaint into a reward: appeasing disgruntled customers
    • Have a clear point of contact: one-stop-shop with all the answers
  3. Model the situation in order to work out where you could change it, then test with real people how they interact in this space, change it and test again.
  4. Make things tangible and visible:
    • Services are perceived not to be physically tangible but there are lots of ‘touching’ elements to it.
    • Put up a big board, use post-its, visualise the processes, take photos, watch.
    • Storyboard up your customer interaction, then play it through with the different personas, the different engagements that can happen.
  5. Do role playing with staff, so they understand the customer’s point of view.
  6. Find out what the people like about the process and strengthen on that.


So, what are the principles of service design?

  1. Iteration: This is a constantly changing environment and you need to constantly adapt to it.
    • Analyse the status quo, does it work? If it doesn’t, iterate to the next best solution: Develop, implement, redevelop, reimplement.
    • ‘Upcycle’: Never stay with the status quo, keep on iterating, never stop in the development, think in cycles.
  2. Crowdsource: By canvassing a large crowd of people for ideas, skills, or participation, the quality of content and idea generation will be superior.
  3. Cocreate: Lower your risk bycocreating and getting real results.
    • Cocreate solutions by involving your staff:

– Empower your staff to solve problems themselves, to make decisions. Otherwise they will not know what to do, this way you get their buy-in and strengthen loyalty and morale.
– Have people working as a team, not in competition to each other.
– Share values and believes, get staff to identify with your goals by being transparent and informative about them.

    • Cocreate with the customer:

– Do your home work: Research your customer preferences.
– Get customer feedback early. Allow easy feedback channels.
– Launch a beta version with an exclusive customer base. Involve them by gathering their comments, learn their opinions, take on their recommendations, ask them for solutions.


For more information on Service Design:

Cape Craft and Design InstituteService Design training

Design Thinkers GroupService Design downloads

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Don't turn your office into a hidden object game: Efficient filing keeps your desktop free from clutter. Don’t turn your office into a hidden object game: Efficient filing keeps your desktop free from clutter.


Why filing is a good idea

The purpose of a filing system is to manage data. This includes storing, retrieving and updating data.
It might look like a tedious task, but there are many advantages to effective records management, which save you time in the long run.


How to create a good filing system

1) Decide what needs to be filed and what can be thrown away

Some documents have to be kept for a certain amount of time for legal purposes. Ensure you don’t dispose of anything you might need at a later stage.

2) Find  a way to convert into easy to store formats

Find out what documents can be stored in a digital format. Nowadays it’s easy to convert important documents into digital files, for example by scanning bills and save them as PDFs.

3) Store your documents in a safe place

If you dispose of the hard copy, ensure you have a secure back-up of your digital data. Hard drives can break, cloud solutions can be hacked, research what works best for you.

4) Decide on a Filing Method

There are different ways to file, decide which one is the most suitable for you:

– by subject / category
– in alphabetical order
– by numbers / in numerical order
– by places / in geographical order
– by dates/ in chronological order

5) Group your files

Think in projects, events or other high level criteria to break large folders into smaller ones. Don’t exceed too many sublevels, but don’t keep too many files in one group either.

6) Create a directory

Get an overview by zooming out to bird eye’s view: How is your current filing system set up? How should it be set up?

Just like we make a Table of Contents for a presentation, an Organogram for our company, a Sitemap for our website, it’s a good idea to visualise the structure of your filing system.

Play around with it, move folders, think up the most unlikely scenario and see if your system still works.

7) Define categories

Identify guiding principles and write them down, so any other person using your filing system knows where to save their documents.

8) Add metadata

Browsing is dead, long live the search!

Even if you file your documents accurately, there can be situations when you can’t remember where you put it. Or you need everything relating to a subject you haven’t thought of before and didn’t file accordingly.

Or you generally might find it much easier and quicker to simply search.

For this you need to attach keywords to your files, add such info and more as metadata whenever possible.

9) Establish and follow a Naming Convention

To find your content easier, give it meaningful names. Establish what information should be in the file name and add descriptive words. To achieve consistency in your filing system, establish a naming convention.

10) Avoid duplicates

Putting an efficient filing system in place should be foolproof not to have duplicates, if it wasn’t for one random factor: human error.

To ensure you have no duplicates wasting valuable storage space, do a search and sort the result by size. Files with the same size are likely to be duplicates.

Alternatively you can install a program that removes duplicates for you.

11) Version Control

Sometimes you might want to keep duplicates for a track record of progress. You can then indicate the versions by naming the files accordingly, e.g. _v1 / _v2 or date-in-reverse-order.

Version control is especially important if more than one person works on a document. For this consider online tools such as document sharing or content management systems which offer a standard version control system.

12) Archive it

Separate ongoing work from completed work by archiving everything you don’t need to access frequently. You can combine this with keeping your back-up up to date.


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