5 CX Tips for DevOps Engineers (and their product owners)

More and more organization are embracing their Customers or users as an essential key to success. Many new job titles are created in the process. But is that always necessary?

There is so much you can already do as an engineer to deliver more than just great code. So much you can do to create a great IT Service for your users.
By adopting just a few ‘habits’ into your routines, things can easily turn around for the better.

I have five tips for you so you can easily start improving your Customers Experience:

1: Use a User

Who is your user, can you give him or her a name and a face?
It’s much easier to ask your colleague engineer “What would Jake think?” or “Would Emily really use this?”

Then Use these in your sessions, during refinements, while discussing problems and solutions.
You can put an additional chair in the room and one of the team members can play the user part. Step really into the ‘role’ of the user and discuss/give feedback from that essential point of view.

2: Drink coffee with your user

Invite some actual users of your service for a coffee and a good conversation.
Ask them Why they use your service. Why do they need it? What “problem’ are they solving with your product?
And also How they use your service? Is it as you expect they would?

Is there anything you can do to make things easier for them?

3: Validate! (your assumptions)

Users are strange creatures, and so are engineers!
Both have a different way of reasoning and doing things.

What is logical for one is crazy for the other. And Vice Versa.

So validate your ideas about what their problem is, and what you think what the best solution is.
You might be surprised!

4: Prototype!

Use a mock up or prototype whenever you can to check if what you are planning to build as a solution will actually solve the issue at hand.
Don’t wast time & energy on MVP’s in code when you can still do a paper mock-up or a clickable prototype.
This way you will get feedback on the proposed solution itself, not on the position or color of a button. The scrappier your prototype, the better!

5) CI/CD cycle

Nope, not a pipeline, that is the tool you use…
But the Continuous Improvement/Customer Delight cycle

Keep talking to your users and understand their everchanging needs. Because the world is changing all the time, so is the need of your users.
What will make them happy today, will be considered  normal next week.
Just like we got used to having electricity in our homes or wifi in hotels. They turn into commodities over time, which just need to be there. Same goes for your (new) features.

So keep improving the quality of your commodities and keep adding features that users will love.


Bonus tip:

Every once in a while, try out you own product or service. Just to see for yourself how things are working and to check if it still does what you expect it to do. You might get surprised.

Have fun with these tips and habits and create some great services!

To your success!

Kind regards,
Barry

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PS Let me know your experiences or tips you have!

Photo by Fab Lentz on unsplash

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