Iterative Customer Engagement & Adoption Metrics
The “SHIFT LEFT” paradigm has hit the market with the Agile philosophy and many components in the Software Development Life Cycle have started involving in the development phase way earlier than before. May it be testing, Info Dev, Indicative Performance or Internationalization, things happen in parallel from initial phase of the project. Also, thanks to Agile, teams are involved with the potential customer from the initial phase of the project to get iterative feedback and make changes in the feature respectively. However, potential customer does not mean actual customer. It’s difficult to say if that potential customer will actually write you a cheque once the feature is out.
Below is the business side of the story :
1) The Product Management organization helps teams to identify what feature needs to be build based on various factors like market trend & research, customer success, differentiator, innovation, etc. This happens before the feature work is started.
2) Team builds the feature iteratively by engaging customer and incorporating the feedback. Note: This is by just listening to what customers want & incorporate it if technically and priority wise feasible.
3) Once the product is released, the survey about how the product performed against projected vs released growth is measured. Nothing about feature is talked.
Your customers may be aware of your feature but are they interested ? What is the level of involvement customers show in your feature ? And on top of all, is your customer waiting so badly for the feature that they will actually pay you for it. Like Henry Ford said “If I had asked people what they wanted, they would’ve said faster running horses”. While organizations are focusing on efficient release cycles, it’s very important that we observe our customer patterns rather than make decisions just based on the interactions we have with the customers.
There are 6 parameters which in help build the ICE metrics:
How many new customers have been informed and are aware about the upcoming feature in the product ?
How many new customers have shown interest to upgrade/buy the product just to use your feature ?
How many customers have attended at least one of your demos?
How many new requirements have been added or updated in the feature based on customer feedback ?
How many customers contributed in BETA testing specifically for your feature ?
How many new/existing licenses acquired | Expected v/s realized growth | How many customer escalations have been raised specifically to your feature
The ICE metrics is updated regularly (quarterly or monthly) while the feature is being baked & could be reviewed by the stakeholders anytime. The live feature health gives confidence and motivation to the development teams as well as to the leadership to make strategic decisions.
Agile provides us an opportunity for early customer feedback. ICE Model takes it further to make the same customer feedback measurable.