I led an initiative to produce a definitive journey map of internal users of Avvo's data to improve efficiency and make better decisions from data.
A journey map tells the story of a user's experience. How they find, engage, and maintain a relationship with a service or product. Avvo creates a journey maps to illuminate and illustrate pain points in our products and services, and use the learning to prioritize improvements. After researching and mapping our consumers, attorneys and internal development process, we turned our attention to how employees within Avvo gather, analyze, report, and act on the data we have.
Avvo wants all employees able to form and act on insights from data. There was a strong belief that the state of data at Avvo, and our ability to make fast, meaningful decisions from data was compromised. Off-hand and unofficially, end-users complained about their challenges finding, retrieving, and trusting the data that they needed to do their jobs as well as possible.
After three prior journey mapping exercises that had a key role in driving roadmaps that dramatically improved the core issues found, the Data Team at Avvo asked for their chance to better understand where they were missing the mark. They wanted to understand what data users were thinking, feeling, and doing.
I volunteered for this opportunity after witnessing the impactful and educational experiences my peers had seen with the three preceding journey maps that Avvo had produced. I was eager to hone the skills and experience this collaborative activity, and found myself having an oversized influence on the execution, completion and communication of the successful project.
The initial phase of the project saw us interviewing 13 unique Avvo employees--each with their own needs and processes for data work. I was the interviewer for half of the users, and also aided in notetaking and consolidating findings. I worked with our cross-discipline working group to affinity map our note taking, to produce a stronger understanding of the themes and commonalities in the stories we heard. Once we had that organized data set, I spent significant time with my UX peers and Data Team partners to learn, undertstand, and determine how to explain the diverse and complex processes data users undertake on this journey and how to meaningfully convey that.
The journey map artifact took shape in part thanks to the whiteboarding exercise I led to detail the typical journey. I delegated key aggregation and normalization of our narrative data points to my expert content architext peer, and provided support and second set of eyes for those findings. I then worked hand-in-hand with our visual designer to produce, review and refine the ultimate artifact--sharing files and responsibilities for the visual execution of this story.
I was instrumental in the sharing out of the findings and artifact, crafting decks, giving multiple presentations, writing the internal press release for the project, and answering questions in many venues.
The journey mapping effort I led almost immediately started to pay dividends and dramatically impact the roadmap for the Avvo data team, which has focused on improvements to their tooling, data sets, and service.
It was a rewarding experience in terms of new relationships formed, challenges overcome, and skills gained. I've been thrilled to see how the outputs of these efforts have shaped the roadmap for the Data team and have started to make for an improved data landscape at Avvo that will benefit our company in the coming years.