Customer feedback inspires Wdesk innovation

Customer feedback inspires Wdesk innovation
November 20, 2014

It's been two months since The Exchange Community user conference concluded in Orlando, but some of the most important and exciting work is just taking off. The next wave of new Wdesk features and enhancements is in development.

This past September, not only were conference attendees learning from us, but our Development and User Experience teams were learning from them, too.

We recently sat down with Hannah and Aaron, two of our interaction designers on the product development team, to hear about the customer feedback that inspired some of their upcoming changes to Wdesk. Here's what they had to say:

Our third user conference was another great learning experience—not only for our customers, but for Workiva, too.

Product Development teams at Workiva use Agile methodology, which encourages quick iteration and validation of concepts with actual users. As much as we use our products, we admit that we don't always know what customers need.

Throughout the year, as we design and build Wdesk, we talk with users as much as possible, listening to their ideas and reactions to new features. The Exchange Community provides a unique opportunity to push this feedback cycle into overdrive—talking to hundreds of customers a day instead of a few a week.

This year, in the Idea Labs, we utilized "gamestorming" activities, a method that brings together visual brainstorming and games to engage customers in fun, interesting ways. From submitting ideas on a napkin, to illustrating their data challenges by traveling on a train through a town, each activity was carefully crafted to make it easier for customers to tell their stories.

Based on those conversations, we were able to identify needs of our customers and create new ideas to bring back to our colleagues.

Our customers' feedback is invaluable—their ideas are the future of Wdesk.

The time we get to spend with our customers is priceless. We get to meet, converse, ideate, and validate concepts. Getting out of the office, stepping away from a computer, and interacting with our customers translates directly into building a world-class solution that directly meets their needs.

Aaron and Hannah couldn't have put it better. Our customers and their ideas are the future of Wdesk. We would be lost without their feedback.

Got a great idea you want to share? Let us know here.

Mike Sellberg

About the author

Mike Sellberg is Executive Vice President and Chief Product Officer at Workiva. He is the former EVP and CTO at iMed Studios and the former Divisional General Manager at Engineering Animation, Inc.