In a nutshell – education and evangelism.
UserZoom recently held its annual “Better UX” event in London. UserZoom is a vendor that offers a platform for measuring and improving User Experiences through enabling organisations to engage real product users. Since the last event in 2017, UserZoom has acquired UK-based WhatUsersDo. This enhanced its own offering and increased the pool of users that customers have access to.
UserZoom’s market is the enterprise and the London event, while small, had many big-name UK and global organisations in attendance. Key to UserZoom’s mission is scaling UX – a challenge for large organisations. From listening to the speakers and attendees, a couple of themes emerged.
First, UX has clearly been recognised by enterprises as delivering business value. I’m sure that many of the companies in attendance this year would not have been there a few years ago. However, while organisations may be recognising that UX has a place, their understanding of it still lacks maturity. UX seems to be an add-on to the process of building applications. Rather than the process itself.
Organisations that truly understand User Experience and what is required to maximise its business value, see a holistic end-to-end iterative process that runs from defining the right products to build, to deploying those products into market and beyond. Many attendees seem to be facing daily battles within their organisations with regards to some of the basic tenets of UX. If the organisation fully understood UX then there would be less friction and UX would deliver greater benefits.
Second, how to advance this level of maturity within organisations. Many speakers referred to the importance of educating and evangelising UX internally. Key to this, as Paul Boag pointed out, is engaging with key business stakeholders. UX practitioners must reach out beyond the believers to parts of the business that are perhaps more sceptical or lack understanding. This is something that the UX community needs to do more of and do better, and is a key message of my own book, “UX Lifecycle”.
Finally, UserZoom has clearly had success attracting enterprise customers – although, many in the audience seem to have come via the WhatUsersDo acquisition. However, the vendor appears to be primarily engaging the UX community rather than its customer organisations more broadly. Perhaps a reflection that UX tends to exist within pockets of an organisation.
To become a vendor that has a more meaningful and impactful relationship within the enterprise, UserZoom needs to speak to those customers beyond the UX teams and in their language. It can play a meaningful role in the education and evangelism that is required. The company could make the move from selling a product to a business change outcome. UX can align and play a critical role in what many refer to as Digital Transformation and this presents an opportunity for UserZoom.