Many of the results we achieve with our work are only possible when working in an open and responsive way. Over the past few years we’ve developed an approach that facilitates agile collaboration with our clients during the course of projects, and often also across projects. Whilst still taking responsibility for delivering timely and focused results, we are keen to open the research process up, providing numerous opportunities for client teams to be involved. This not only helps to make sure their expertise and knowledge are actively used, but it also allows them to gain a deep understanding of the insights and opportunities identified. The end result is always an outcome which moves way beyond the traditional ‘black box’ results many more traditional agencies still tend to deliver.
Expanding ROI: Creating Reusable Assets
Creating reusable assets means extending the value of a research project for beyond the length of the project itself. – achieving the stated goals, but in a manner that’s also sensitive to the wider context: what comes next? What are the deeper question marks this project is seeking to address? We are always keen to make sure our deliverables have a high Return On Investment ratio.
A key issue here is format – confining deliverables to written reports alone risks making the results inaccessible and uninspiring to wider audiences. STBY works with various mediums (videos, posters, events) to overcome this problem, which extends the life cycle of our deliverables beyond the immediate goals of the project.
The added benefit of this approach is the ability to over time develop a “repository” of research material for our clients. This might mean a curated video library, a focused compilation film, or materials and guidelines to run multiple internal workshops with different audiences. Ultimately, this results in each project delivering more value for money; instead of each new project existing in isolation to what’s gone before it. The outcomes of our work often serve as an evidential foundation for future work and help define and support an organisation’s ongoing focus.
Insight Posters: Visual and Engaging Results
An illustrated report isn’t the only way to communicate a project, and definitely not the best way. Communicating results in a rich visual way, for instance on large posters, transfers insights in a faster and more engaging way then when transcribed into a written report. Visual diagrams of customer experience flows provide a vivid and holistic overview of where the main challenges and opportunity areas for service innovation are.
These visual results also greatly help in ‘opening up’ projects to a wider audience within an organisation. Whereas reports may stay locked in drawers or inboxes, a poster on the wall is a much more engaging way to communicate results, insights and findings to a wider group of internal stakeholders. Some of the posters we’ve produced have taken over entire walls in client’s offices, bringing much wider audiences into the process of discussing the findings – a key goal when considering that no project will be successful if only a few people within the organisation hear about it.
Collaborative Workshops: Co-creation and Transfer of Ownership
Collaborative workshops are an extremely effective way to conclude a project. They allow insights to be refined, and new concepts to be co-created, while at the same time greatly enhancing internal ownership of the project’s results. Such workshops work best when all those present are given the opportunity to be fully involved – which means there’s an upper limit on how many people can be invited to one session. With large numbers of internal stakeholders, a series of several session often proves to be the best approach.
By providing workshop kits for clients, with everything they need to run a workshop by themselves, we ensure that they are able to run multiple internal workshops with various different teams – all with the same core tools and materials. This again greatly enhances the ‘shelf-life’ of a project, and allows client teams to gain a more intimate understanding and ownership over the material – working with the same data multiple times can mean uncovering deeper and more insightful results.