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Framework #09

Jobs To Be Done

Clayton Christensen and Anthony Ulwick (2005)

What does it mean?

Jobs To Be Done (JTBD) is a framework that helps us to define and focus on the key things that a user wants to accomplish. In doing so we treat each “job” as a primarily functional goal, that is stable over time and is agnostic when it comes to a solution. By taking this objective view, and relating back to Persona’s, we have the freedom to explore breakthrough innovation linked to situation, motivation and desired outcomes.

When X is happening, I want Y, so that Z…

X = Situation
Y = Motivation
Z = Desired Outcome

Why do we believe it's important?

JTBD enables organisations to help understand the desired outcomes, and step away from conventional wisdom and “that’s how it’s always been done” mentality.

The JTBD framework focuses the design process on context, causality and motivations instead of assumptions, subjectiveness, and previous implementations. Often for the first time, an organisation will have clarity over the real needs of the user making the process of designing the right solution and delivering a successful outcome much more predictable.

Potential solutions can be tested, and even benchmarked against other solutions through experiments with more precision, leading to validated learnings from users that helps deliver new ways of working and innovation.

How do we put it into practice?

For a European Train Operating Company we used the Job To Done Framework to help two different business units realise that despite local variances, their desired outcomes were the same. For the first time, this gave the client the ability to implement a single process for operating during times of disruption that was true for both business units and allowed for local variation.

Sources: Clayton Christensen, Scott Cook and Taddy Hall, “Marketing Malpractice: The Cause and the Cure”, Harvard Business Review, December 2005; Anthony W. Ulwick, “What Customers Want: Using Outcome-Driven Innovation to Create Breakthrough Products and Services”, McGraw-Hill, 2005

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