When users are part of the staff

When users are part of the staff

Monday, 23 april 2018 | Redacción CEU

The DNA of enterprises is being modified by all the disruptive changes that affect their environment. Companies need to respond with innovation and creativity to the demands of a society in constant transformation. In these changes of the script, the work models that emerge find a common path, all converge in the growing importance of the role of people both inside and outside the companies. Among these new methodologies that defend a greater "humanization" of work, there is one that has gained strength in the past few years and which, in turn, stands out for its particular focus on users, it is the Design Thinking. Customers gave up being simple recipients, now, they can become members of the team. How is this affecting the staff?


Leaders in the market like Apple, Airbnb or Google are just some of the ambassadors of the Design Thinking. However, this is not a new methodology available only for the top firms. In the past few years, many companies have started using these innovative models. There are also many who defend and support the benefits of its adoption. But, if something really gets our attention about this methodology, it is not its growing importance in the definition of new business strategies, but its great influence on the transformation of the Human Resources field.

Design Thinking is not only a method that pursues to find creative solutions through design, always taking as a point of reference clients or users, in a viable technological and a feasible commercial way; it also serves as a lever that is transforming the labor sector, the structure of companies and the management of the talent found both inside and outside of them.

Designing new ways of thinking about the people management

This methodology places users at the central axis where work rotates. This disposition is based on the premise that Customer Experience has an impact on the growth of the business, but we cannot forget the important role that Employee Experience also has on it. The relationship established between them is key to achieve a negative or positive result. As it might be seen with examples like the case showed in the event organized by The CEU IAM Business School about  Room Mate Hotels, a Customer Experience aligned to the Employee Experience is a guarantee of success. It is not surprising if we take into account that, in the Human Resources departments, the clients are precisely the workers themselves.

Design Thinking can serve both for the definition of the Employee Experience and for the identification of the Candidate Personas. In the same way that the Buyer Persona is defined in marketing, it is possible to improve and refine the strategy of a company in relation to its Talent Acquisition thanks to a design based on the study, the observation and the analysis of ideal candidates and everything that surrounds them -how their experiences, behaviors, interests or emotions are-.

A working model based on Design Thinking requires collaboration between the departments and  the multidisciplinary teams. The work cannot focus only on the performance of the parts. This new methodology is inspired by all the differences of the participants, the more different they are, the more enriched work will be. Therefore, Design Thinking implies a different way of approaching to work, a new labor mentality oriented to the innovation, the diversity, the work through observation, the rethinking of the assumptions and, ultimately, the openness to creativity.

When users are part of the staff

The welcome of the new employees to the company

Design Thinking is an innovative work methodology that, in one way or another, invites consumers to participate in the meeting room where decisions are made. Final users are no longer mere recipients, they have an important role in the creation process of products, services or, even, in the work strategy itself. However, the experience shows that some companies pay more attention to what they sell than what users really want and need.

The mission of Design Thinking stems from the need to combat this lack of interest in User Experience and the desire to find out what users think and feel and what their problems really are. Therefore, empathy is a key piece in the construction of these models. It is thanks to it that  professionals can reach their new co-workers. That is right, even if it sounds forceful, users become members of the staff, whether they are present or not, because, in some way, they always attend the work meetings.

Design Thinking cannot be separated from the work in the management of the human capital within companies. Its vision is anthropocentric, whether they are clients, users or employees, people should be placed in the center and the work must be focused on them. Besides that, the good relationship between employees and users is vital. If they do not make a good team, the effort invested will be completely useless. The Human Resources departments should promote this bond, they should not encourage the differences that exist between them.

At The CEU IAM Business School, we believe that in today's business and social environment, excellence and innovation are keys to the organizational transformation. For this reason, we have designed our Master's Degree in Human Resources, the Management of Talent and Leadership, with it, you can acquire the necessary knowledge to face, determined and prepared, all the challenges in the leadership and the people management in this stage characterized by the constant change.