Prior to 2017, Qumulo provided full service installation at an average of $5,800 per install at no charge to customers. At least $435,000 were already spent on providing world-class customer support. The company had 75 customers at the beginning of 2016 and was growing rapidly. We needed to move to a DIY model in which the customers can easily install and expand their Qumulo storage systems. The scope of the project started out as creating a quick start guide that would be included in the out of box experience (OOBE). We needed to find out what were the pertinent information to help users get to using Qumulo products quickly.
My roles: UX strategist, service designer, researcher, people manager.
- Moved all customers to DIY model by Q3 2016 as planned
- Fulfillment issues reduced from 20% to 4% in one quarter, with an average reduction of $3,246 per order
We visited 18 customers in the first quarter to experience receiving, unboxing, cluster installation, configuration, and get the systems up and running.
Competitors’ product administration guides were extremely lengthy and difficult to understand (see this 556 page example). There were even manuals written by 3rd parties to supplement the official manuals. Because Qumulo products were built with the user-centered approach, all we needed was a one pager as a part of the out of box experience plus online tutorials for each specific feature. The final quick start guide had information on parts included, racking, cabling, and creating a cluster using the UI (no command line needed). As a result, we successfully moved all customers to DIY model by Q3 as planned.
However, there were interesting findings that warranted a service design project. For example, customers were receiving incorrect parts, extra parts, not enough parts, or parts were altogether missing. The problems delayed installations from hours to days and was costly to customers and to Qumulo.
Before Service Design Improvement
After in depth interviews with teams involved in the fulfillment experience, I determined that the initial order placement stage in the process had the biggest ripple effect and fixing it would give us the most favorable return. A lack of a standardized method of capturing all the necessary order information was the root cause.
After interviews with employees involved in the sales and fulfillment process, I designed a standardized pre-installation checklist as a requirement on every order. To set customers and Qumulo up for success, it included information on contact, physical site (for receiving), racking (for parts), customer network (for cables and switches), and cluster configuration.
The checklist also included necessary tasks, handoff points, and the persons responsible from sales engineer, ops, and customer success.
After Service Design Improvement
The negative ripple effects were removed after the checklist was implemented.
The checklist was implemented at the beginning of Q2 2016. As a result, fulfillment issues reduced from 20% to 4% in one quarter, with an average reduction of $3,246 per order.
Products packed with polystyrene foam are not sellable in certain countries. This was an important piece of information to prepare Qumulo for international expansion. We found this out from a site visit in Canada and began research on internationally acceptable packing materials.