16 Nov 2016


A post by Abhijit Gupta

At the very outset let me clarify – this is not a post on the need for Demonetising our currency or an analysis of merits and demerits of it. My sincere belief is that we are onto something revolutionary and must congratulate our PM for the bold step taken.Customer Journey
This post is a humble pointer to a tool available in Customer Experience (CX) management methodologies and how a proper use of this could have made the adoption to this monumental change easier for the average citizens of India and not a social media explosion now being witnessed.

The Case for Citizen Journey Mapping
Seasoned CX professionals would have already guessed – the tool is Customer Journey Mapping or in this case Citizen Journey Mapping.
In its basic form it’s a pictorial representation of a customer’s (citizen’s) journey through the various Touchpoints in order to reach her goal. This would entail taking into account visiting a website for more information, downloading an app, planning the next purchase using electronic payments or depositing old notes at a bank counter, capturing the citizen’s emotional involvement at that specific touchpoint and the various questions she may have in mind.
In its detailed format, it captures what is likely to go wrong at each touchpoint, the various stakeholders and their roles and KRAs and the back office support required. It also identifies 2-3 key touchpoint interactions (also known as Moments of Truth) that could make or break the interaction.

8 Steps to a better Citizen Experience
Hypothetically speaking, if Mr. Modi’s team had used this mapping tool, they would have possibly done the following –
1) Used a video (various languages) to communicate the salient points just after PM’s speech.
2) Shot 1 minute videos of How-To’s to be played across TV Channels and mobiles.
3) Got Senior Ministers to come on Press interactions across the day to mention hardships expected in detail
4) Known beforehand that the Rs.2000 note cannot be put in the current ATM configuration due to dimensional issues and extra prints of 100 rupee notes would be needed.
5)Created PDFs of instructions to customers to be downloaded or printed at various Touchpoints
6) Put in place special logistics to plan and execute seamless ATM withdrawals and cash replenishments – a key Moment of Truth
7) Run full page ads explaining the rationale behind Rs.2000 notes and the Rs.4000 withdrawal limits
8) Have special Banking teams to fan out to rural areas- especially to the underserved Northeast where even ATMs are not common, and arranged for free, basic rations and necessities (don’t our politicians promise rice at Rs.2?).

I must admit here that I have not done a detailed study of how the whole demonetisation process was planned, and also that due to the secrecy issue a detailed journey map may not have been possible. And like I said before, this post is not about demonetisation or its merits, but about the Customer Experience Journey tool and how every organisation (and even the Government) should use it to plan and implement complex deliveries of their services.

Meanwhile I continue to watch the Black Swan event (for Black Money) pan out and wish our PM and countrymen all success in their demonetisation journey.

The author is a core member of the AbacusYellow team.