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Is it time for Customer Experience Professionals to Up their Design Game?

It’s over, CX pros…the time where the business world can still distinguish between CX and UX has finally come to an end. And we need to stop fighting it.  After researching this issue for the past seven months, at companies across multiple industries, I can tell you that:

  • CX has been relegated to “Insights,” due to the lack of action on those insights by CX professionals and companies alike
  • Design is almost exclusively the domain of the human-centered design world, thanks to a focus on “digital transformation” that can sometimes overlook the offline experiences and importance of engaging with customers
  • Strategy appears to live with the designers of the world, unless Strategy teams are in place with a keen focus on CX

A recent Forrester report made the bold statement that 1 in 4 CX professionals would lose their jobs this year.  While that’s only a prediction, I’d add that if true, a large portion of the reason would be due to the emphasis on digital and the fact that greater budgets flow there, versus where the real (online, mobile) experience is designed.  If you are a CX pro, here are a few tips to stay in the game:

  • Design thinking fits squarely into your wheelhouse, even if you do work in insights. You must know where the insights are going and why they are valuable–or not
  • Consider design thinking training–you don’t have to be good enough to develop wireframes or code, just conversant on the topic and aware of methodologies as a start
  • Partner with your UX team in whatever way you can.  Be part of the strategy and solution from the inception, not after the fact

In summary, company leaders and CX practitioners should be wary of the deviation and singular focus on either insights or digital, and look to strike a better balance between digital and CX.  While digital is a significant piece of the puzzle, without the customer and their ensuing experience, the digital piece is not worth the sum of its parts.  So, if you are a CX expert that is feeling disenfranchised, it could be time to empower yourself through further training and a stronger partnership with your UX team.  After all, without CX and UX in sync, the customer will experience your brand in a fractured, disconnected way.

About Shelly Chandler:  Shelly is award-winning, transformative leader offering 25+ years of extensive knowledge in customer and employee experience.

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