This Best Practice relates to our ITXM Framework™, available FREE to read or download
Showing end-users how their collective feedback has guided IT improvement initiatives
The goal of regularly communicating with end-users is to update them on the significance of their feedback. "You Said, We Did" demonstrates how feedback is used to make IT decisions that improve the products or services that end-users rely on.
Sari Ihana / HCL
Sakari Kyrö / HappySignals
2nd February 2023
"You Said, We Did" communication refers to a process where IT communicates with end-users about how their feedback has influenced IT decisions and improvements. To make this communication effective, it should be presented in a practical manner and utilize simple language that is easy to understand without technical jargon.
The communication should clearly outline how the feedback has been used to make changes and improvements, demonstrating the direct link between end-user feedback and IT decisions.
By doing so, end-users will feel valued and engaged, as they can see the impact of their feedback, and this can encourage them to provide more feedback in the future.
The main reason for regularly demonstrating how end-users feedback has been taken into account is to show that IT values their input when developing IT services. Many end-users do not provide feedback because they feel like it won't make a difference.
Regularly communicating how feedback guides IT work, even if all of their requests cannot be fulfilled, helps end-users feel heard and valued. This encourages them to continue providing feedback, knowing that their opinions and ideas are being considered. This also helps IT to understand the needs and expectations of the end-users better, resulting in more user-friendly IT services that better meet their needs.
It is a good practice to begin demonstrating the results of Experience Management as soon as they become available. In the beginning, the results might be small wins in specific areas of IT, but it is still worth highlighting them to end-users. By consistently using the "You Said, We Did" approach, end-users will become more confident that their feedback is being taken seriously and acted upon. This can help to build trust between end-users and IT, which is crucial for maintaining positive working relationships.
Even small improvements can be significant to end-users and highlighting these successes, encourages them to continue providing feedback, knowing that it is being used to make positive changes - in alignment with the ITIL4 principle of "Focus on value".
There are many good guidelines on effective internal communications, but we found this IT communications guideline by Sari Ihana to be really great.
Her 5 tips on improving IT communications are simple, practical, and easy to follow.
1. Choose the right channel. Use email only if you must. Send only those messages by email, that require action from the end users. Sure, there will be those techy people, who want to discuss IT stuff, but most of us just want to get things done and move on with our work. You can move the discussion from email to company's internal social media or discussion forum. We tested this. It works.
2. Keep it short and get straight to the point. As much as it tempts you to shout your success in that IT project to the whole world - don’t. Nobody cares unless they work on that same project with you. You can always get your team glorified in the IT social media or discussion forum that you just established. The end users only need to know: What, when, why, and what is required from them. If possible, the why should be something that benefits them.
3. Keep it simple. Use language that is simple and easy to read. Leave out the big technical words, instead use language that the end users understand. If you are working in a global company, remember to avoid “posh” English words. English language skills vary a lot between different countries.
4. Use pictures or videos. If there are many steps that the end-user needs to take, use pictures. Show exactly what they need to do. If it’s a big change, then make a video out of it. For the IT people this might seem a bit silly, but most of us are not that technical and we are terribly busy. Clear message saves money and time when all the end users are not calling to IT Help Desk (or whatever it’s called in your company) when they don’t understand what they need to do.
5. Test. So you have worked with your IT thing and tested and piloted it. Now it’s time for letting people know. What do you do: Just vomit something to a long email starting with bragging about your project success? NO! You write your message keeping in mind those 4 points above and then test. Test if anybody can understand what you are trying to say. Testing with other IT guys is not ok. Go as far as you can from IT. Ask that non-technical person to explain in his own words what the message is about. If he succeeds, you have succeeded.
End-user communication is just one part of IT project communication and email is just one channel. But having clear end-user communication and using the right channels, will improve your project success and keep the end users happier. Trust me, we have done this.