Borne Curious Series: Drafting Blueprints To Facilitate Product Growth
So, you have gotten to this point. You feel like you have conquered the mountain. Your MVP was a success. Your understanding of the market was spot-on, and now you have a substantial growing user base. To support these features, your business has added people and processes to the mix. Your product is delivering massive value to your customers, but cracks may start to show. You are not as fast to the market with new features as you used to be. Customer service inquiries are increasing and it is taking longer to resolve them. You are reacting to user feedback instead of actively seeking it out. Reactive rather than proactive.
These are the issues that adversely affect your product’s ability to deliver value, but they are not endemic to the product itself. When you think about it, the product design tools with which you are familiar may not be able to identify and help resolve these issues.
Let us take a step back and take a look at a case study that we have come up with the highlight of these issues:
A local furniture retailer thinks they could increase their revenue if they add online ordering and delivery to their methods of operation.
Their MVP’s critical path would look something like this:
Wouldn’t you know it? Our case study’s online ordering takes off and is a success! It is so successful that the business grows to include a second location and additional warehouse space. The business adds local pickup as a feature and hires additional staff to meet the demand.
But they hit a bump in the road. Unfortunately, they also start to experience serious customer service and organisational issues — inaccurate inventory and late deliveries. They need to press pause and consider the organisational people and processes that support their retail service.
Here is what our online retailer’s current process might look like:
When coming up with this case study, we noticed some obvious shortcomings in their fulfilment and inventory management processes. When they had a single location doing a few orders a day, it was easy for an employee to check email, pick an item off a shelf, and prepare for shipping. As their service and organisation has grown, that process has shown itself to be out of scalability’s reach. Their ultimate business goals are still the same, and the customer journey remains unchanged, but now should be the time to address these differences.
For organisations with a maturing product, sitting down with our team at Borne and conducting service blueprint meetings is a great next step. The blueprint will provide comprehensive relationships between your product and the people and processes that will support it. This can help your business identify opportunities for improvement, discover weaknesses and bridge cross-team efforts. It can broaden your focus, showing your product as the customer-facing aspect of an organisational service.
Through documenting your organisation’s services, you can identify backstage actions and processes that are critical to delivering value to the end-user. The customer experience can remain a focal point of the service, but with a blueprint, we can now have visibility and a shared understanding of how that experience is supported behind the scenes. What would have been an ad has or loosely organised, can now be formalised, measured, and iterated on. Instead of putting out fires, we can focus our energy on thoughtful, strategic growth for your product.
A service blueprint is a robust and powerful tool, but we understand that creating it does not have to be a major investment. With our committed team of designers and project managers at Borne, we can facilitate this through sprints to document and analyse the existing service, and define goals, responsibilities and the next steps for your product.
Are you interested in hearing how we can incorporate a service blueprint into your product development plan to facilitate growth?
Don’t wait. Let’s get in touch!