Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Who Is the “Customer”?

Many software products offer capabilities targeted for different users and use cases.  A recent example is an HR tool that provides capabilities for HR staff to manage their processes, while also providing end-user-oriented portals for HR’s internal customers. 

These represent two very different (though related) use-cases, for two very different audiences – different “customers” – and the resulting demos should be different, as well.

Can you imagine a demo of an HR system that spent 45 minutes focused on the back-end HR stuff when the audience was largely composed of internal customers (non-HR)?  They’d be bored, frustrated, and likely very angry at the waste of time. 

Even worse, imagine that the audience included high-level executives and managers of several non-HR departments.  Not a pretty picture! 

(I just saw this happen – hence this post.)

We see this bifurcated situation frequently – nearly every time there is a “customer-facing portal” or similar capability in addition to back-end tools and workflows.  Many software packages offer these kinds of dual-scenario capabilities, including ITSM, HR, Accounting, Finance, and others.

The demos for these types of packages need to take into account who is in the audience and their job titles.  For Great Demo! practitioners, this translates into two or more Situation Slides (and hence two or more corresponding Illustrations, Do It pathways, etc.).

See my article on Surprisingly Successful Complex Situation Demos for more examples of how to approach these multiple-player and multiple-solution demos at

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