Customer Journey Mapping for The Home Depot
I worked as a customer experience designer intern for The Home Depot (THD) in home services for Summer 2016. During this internship, my partner and I mapped out ideal and current customer journey to take on a flooring project with and without The Home Depot to identify current problems and potential solutions.
Role: Research, Design and Visualization
Date: May 2016- Aug. 2016
Keywords: Customer Experience, Service Design, Customer Journey Map, Stakeholder
To understand what ideal journey should be, we interviewed The Home Depot customers, store associates, and our competitor store associates, through which we found that the ideal journey should only take 5 steps, while there are too many steps involves in THD journey. In order to understand reasons for having each step and arise problems in THD journey, we also interviewed business stakeholders, including merchandising, marketing, customer insight, customer service and other teams. Meanwhile, we took a deep dive into all the available documentations about flooring service. It was a lot of documentation to read through and understand, however, some patterns keep showing up which mean that could still be a problem. We went back to the stakeholders with our questions from the documentations and kept going back forth between collecting more insights and problems with interviewing stakeholders.
Some steps are redundant for customers, however, they are serving a purpose for THD from a service provider perspective.
Utilizing all the data and feedback we collected from our research, we came up with a customer journey map which maps out the ideal journey (in grey as in the image below), and the journey at THD (in orange as in the image below), so that it is easier to understand which steps may be redundant for customers.
Addition to that, we presented our findings and solutions to business stakeholders, including marketing department, finance department, merchandising department, as well as SVP of home services department.
The scope of this project is huge, and we did not have the chance to talk with all the parties involved in this journey, for example, the customers who didn’t shop at The Home Depot but chose other stores.
Coordinating time schedule with different stakeholders. Since the process involved several stakeholders and sometimes it is beneficial to have different stakeholders together in a meeting or an interview. So coordinating people with busy time schedules was one of our challenges.
Comprehend existing documentations. First of all, as a new member of THD, we had challenges to understand the jargon and terminologies that are used in the documentations. Also, since some of the documentations are years old, some studies are hard to understand without given the context of the study.
Come up with proper interview questions:
Interviews with stakeholders always lasted 30-60 minutes due to time constrains and some of them did not have time for another follow-up interview, so coming up with the right questions as well as follow-up questions immediately, is one of the keys to efficiently use the time, which was also a challenge for us.