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As outlined in a previous blog customers’ expectations on outcomes from jobs to be done are growing. The outcome must be both relevant, possible to measure and possible to improve. Aspire to master the metrics aspect of jobs to be done.
Metric fundamentals for jobs to be done
The metrics we look for are something increasing or decreasing around status quo. We know what it is today, and can articulate in which direction improvements should go. With metrics varying with the type of job in play.
To determine if a metric make sense two aspects need to be fulfilled. First a clear need for improving the value. Second a clear probability a new solution can improve the value in a material way. When both are true we have a foundation for a business strategy.
Look for big numbers. The work with articulating an alternative job to be done and changing set up for superior execution is a large undertaking. A job worth doing only if numbers are big.
Metrics addressing businesses big challenges
Direct monetary metrics is the primary starting point. A game where predictions of revenue growth, capex and opex reductions could be done with high accuracy in the past. These metrics remain central, but harder to predict.
Businesses are more exposed to vulnerabilities, uncertainties, complexity and ambiguity (VUCA) today. Each factor contributing to added business risks. Businesses are leaner, and operate in a volatile macro environment. Revenue projections in new areas are uncertain and harder to nail. Especially for the hat-trick of accurate timing, volume and price projections. Businesses go digital. A market reality that is more complex and call for complex digital transformation initiatives. And last the big ambiguity question. How to get the balance between sales execution and business development right.
Besides to finding new metrics, altering the weight of the existing metrics is a viable source of innovation. The least obvious innovation is about changing the direction for the improvement needle.
Common metrics for outcome improvements
The value of risk management metrics is perhaps most important. Protecting your customers in fields where you are better. In areas as identifying, hedging, managing risks or all the above. A clear risk reduction game with focus on top-line risk.
The value of time as a metric is growing in importance. The obvious one is execution time where reduced time generate a lower variable costs. The second aspect of time is lead times from decision to start of execution. The latter defining how late you can start and still be ready in time.
The value of metrics associated with taking out an existing job your customer does. Or a new jobs customer will have to add to what they do today. Competence you don’t have to get or need to transform to is of great value. Reducing customers’ own efforts as part of a broader specialization trend. Especially for areas where an eco-system partner or API can connect to their business with low efforts.
The value of metrics for streamlining interfaces to buyers can transform the way they view you. Make your marketing simple, helpful and easy to understand. Make ordering and shipments hassle free. Make tracking of advancements of the jobs you do an exciting part of the journey. And make payments easy on your and their sides. An area you have full control in improving.
Last but not least, the metrics associated with possible business model changes. The way your customers pay for your products and services. Customers getting a cost base with better correlation to revenue expectations. Tailored for the trade-off between predictable cost vs. minimal costs.
Questions for you and your team
- Which metrics represent the business outcomes you deliver today – understand your starting point.
- Are these metrics aligned with current and anticipated customer needs – a forward looking insight central to understand.
- Is the weighting of importance between the current metrics still relevant – altering priorities is low hanging fruits to explore.
- For which metrics do you see a fit between both value for customers and opportunity to improve – an area where AxB need to match to make sense.
- Which of the new metrics can you pull off – expect changes in operational set-up to succeed.
Additional reading suggestions
- What AirBnB understands about customers job to be done [ARTICLE] – by Harvard Business Review
- How to fail at jobs to be done [BLOGPOST] – by Anthony Ulwick
- Outcome statements define the customer’s success metrics at every step of the job [BLOGPOST] – by iNPD Center
- Why numbers matter in jobs to be done [BLOGPOST] – by CustomerThink
- When Coffee and Kale compete [book] – by Alan Klement