In today’s business landscape, the shift towards customer-centric strategies is clearly evident in the success stories of companies that prioritise excellent Customer Experiences (CX). The benefits, including higher revenues, lower costs, and increased loyalty, have become undeniable. However, as organisations focus on refining direct interactions with external clients, a critical aspect often overlooked is the internal customer / User Experience (UX) of internal systems used by employees. When employees face system interfaces that are poorly designed, it sends a message to employees that their time and commitment have little value, impacting not only innovation but also making it hard to execute the company’s strategy. Poor user experience can cause cultural change resistance, affecting retention rates, employee satisfaction levels, and capabilities. This article delves into the strategic importance of good user interface design within the enterprise, emphasising why companies should prioritise their employees’ UX as a key element of their overall strategy, and continued investment in the Digital Experiences for all external and internal customers of systems.
Understanding Internal UX
The internal customer experience (CX) and user experience (UX) are often prioritised as two distinct concepts, but they both revolve around creating positive interactions within and outside an organisation, both can be defined as the Digital Experience.
Internal customer experience also refers to non-system users and the employees’ interactions and perceptions across an organisation as they engage with various departments, teams, processes, and systems. In other words, it focuses on the quality of the interactions and support one department or employee provides to another within the same company.
Just as companies strive to create positive experiences for their external customers, recognising and enhancing internal customer experience is essential for fostering a collaborative and productive work environment. This involves ensuring effective communication, providing the necessary resources and tools, keeping Continuous Improvement (CI) at the heart of the organisation and addressing the needs or concerns of internal stakeholders, thus generally creating a workplace culture that promotes mutual support and cooperation. The goal is to optimise internal processes and relationships, ultimately contributing to improved overall organisational performance.
Internal UX refers to the quality of interactions and experiences employees have with an organisation’s digital tools, software, and systems to ensure a well-functioning and harmonious organisational environment. It focuses on how user-friendly, efficient, and effective these internal digital interfaces are for employees performing their tasks and responsibilities.
Ensuring these touchpoints are well-designed, user-friendly, and intuitive contributes to a positive internal user experience, fostering a more collaborative and productive work environment facilitating smoother collaboration and workflow among employees.
UX & Internal Systems
A comprehensive customer and user experience strategy extends beyond business process, product, and service optimisation, encompassing a seamless integration of “customer-first” principles throughout the organisation. This alignment, spanning from executives’ visionary decisions to employees’ daily interactions, is crucial for achieving customer-centric goals. However, numerous companies encounter challenges in internally aligning themselves with these objectives. Organisational silos often address specific touchpoints in the customer journey but lack accountability for the end-to-end experience. Failing to optimise internal services has repercussions, as it severs the link between the employee’s workplace experience and the desired customer experience. Unfortunately, the internal customer experience frequently takes a backseat to external priorities in top management.
In competitive talent markets, providing employees with a seamless workplace experience becomes a valuable aspect of a company’s value proposition for attracting and retaining employees. Cultivating a customer-first culture enhances employees’ sense of ownership, boosting retention rates. Furthermore, improving the internal customer experience yields benefits beyond employee satisfaction. It can reduce costs through increased productivity and streamlined processes. Digitising manual processes, for example, significantly enhances efficiency, leading to substantial savings.
To effectively enhance the internal customer experience, companies must prioritise measuring and understanding employee satisfaction. To initiate this transformative change, assess existing user interfaces, focusing on what benefits the end-users rather than specific departments or functions. Effective interfaces where good design seamlessly integrates with technology create an intuitive experience that users feel they already understand how to navigate. Developing systems and interfaces that resonate with diverse information processing styles, the success lies in screen design and the harmonious integration of design, functionality, and information architecture, creating a familiar and comfortable user experience. The pivotal question for any product, app, or system is its purpose in aiding users. Delve into what rewards or challenges users and validate assumptions by observing their experiences.
Integrating AMOBI for Continuous Improvement for the User Experience
In the quest for elevating internal user experience (UX), organisations are increasingly recognising the need to integrate methodologies that not only enhance existing systems but also enable a continuous focus on improvement. One such powerful framework is our AMOBI methodology, designed to facilitate Continuous Improvement (CI) of internal workflows, reducing friction between internal customers and stakeholders.
AMOBI serves as a catalyst for ongoing and critical focus on internal systems’ improvement. The methodology employs a structured and templated approach to assess initial requirements through root cause assessment, mapping, and optimising processes. By identifying manual or system bottlenecks, AMOBI ensures a comprehensive understanding of the intricacies of internal workflows. The proposed optimisations are then compared to expected benchmarks, and successful optimisations are implemented, creating a cycle of continuous enhancement. AMOBI operates as an iterative framework, aligning with the concept of continuous improvement. Its effectiveness lies in its ability to systematically map and optimise business processes, ensuring that the internal systems are in a state of constant evolution. This iterative nature allows for a structured approach to improving user experiences in parallel with the integration of process automation.
The strength of AMOBI lies in its capability to map and optimise business processes comprehensively. It goes beyond just addressing surface-level issues by delving into root causes and system bottlenecks. This methodical approach ensures that not only are immediate concerns addressed, but a foundation for long-term efficiency and user satisfaction is established. It not only identifies and resolves existing challenges but also sets the stage for anticipating and proactively addressing future issues. By incorporating AMOBI into the strategy for enhancing internal UX, companies create an environment where employee satisfaction, collaboration, and productivity thrive.
The significance of internal user experience (UX) cannot be overstated as it emerges as a pivotal element influencing the success of organisations in today’s competitive landscape. A positive internal UX not only enhances employee engagement but also contributes to higher levels of satisfaction. Happy employees are inherently more productive and innovative, becoming integral contributors to the organisation’s overall success. Operational efficiency and collaboration are further elevated through optimised internal UX, streamlining workflows and facilitating enhanced cooperation among different departments. The result is improved communication channels, user-friendly interfaces, and quicker decision-making, leading to more efficient business processes.