A day in the life of... Head of Digital Product Management at RS Components
Published: 29 April 2016 By Ben Davis
Think like a customer (you are one), sharing is caring, and focus on NES (Nintendo Entertainment System? - No! Net Ease Score).
This is just some of the advice offered by Nicki Young, Head of Digital Product Development at RS Components.
RS is the perfect playground for improving customer experience, receiving hundreds of millions of visitors a year.
Let's hear from Nicki.
Please describe your job! What does a Head of Digital Product Management do?
As head of digital product management, I am responsible for looking after our online customer experience across UK, EMEA & APAC.
This involves spending time to truly understand our customers’ needs and look at ways to provide them with an more intuitive experience to make their lives easier, more convenient and making RS Online an instinctive preference for our customers.
Whereabouts do you sit within the organisation? Who do you report to?
I report to the VP of Digital, who is responsible for getting traffic to the site via search engine marketing (SEM) and providing people with a delightful experience when they arrive to turn new customers into converting & loyal customers.
What kind of skills do you need to be effective in your role?
You need to really care about the customer experience, which starts and ends with your customers.
This is heavily supported by an analytical mind-set, to identify and find opportunities to improve the performance of our online channel.
As well as this, the digital world is ever changing and you have to be dynamic and agile in your thinking, finding ways of delivering value early for the benefit of your customers and the overall business.
Tell us about a typical working day…
The days vary and are always exciting – whether it be joining a daily stand-up with one of the agile teams to be part of the great improvements we are making to the experience, or collaborating with our colleagues in other markets to look at how we can provide more relevant marketing to our customers.
Every day is fast paced and requires you to work with a wide variety of stakeholders across the business to drive the RS brand forward.
What do you love about your job? What sucks?
Some would say it’s a bit sad, but I honestly love everything about my job!
I love the ever-changing digital world and the evolving nature of technology to allow businesses to engage with customers on an individual level and offer them tailored experiences and marketing.
Our organisation has a collaborative culture at the heart of it and there is always a great buzz across the digital hubs, working through customers' pain points and finding innovative ways to overcome them, taking an agile way of working to get improvements to market in rapid time and continuing to iterate and test thereafter.
Filtered search - just one of the features that improves UX on the RS website
What kind of goals do you have? What are the most useful metrics and KPIs for measuring success?
As a business we want to provide our customers with a world class digital experience that allows them to achieve their objective whenever they trade with RS online.
The metric that we find most useful to measure this is NES (Net Ease Score), as it provides a strong indication of what our customers are finding challenging.
We then supplement this with a wealth of metrics to understand where customers are departing and how we can look to retain them.
What are your favourite tools to help you to get the job done?
I would say that the tools I like the most are Adobe to get the insight, JiRA to manage our backlogs and visions, and Excel to crash all the insight and data together to identify opportunities.
How did you get started in the digital industry, and where might you go from here?
I started my life in digital as a developer building websites, then quickly progressed into the commercial side of digital looking at ways to optimise experiences for commercial gains.
I have been doing this for some time now and have a real passion for business and believe that digital is the driver to business growth.
I would like to think I can continue to progress my career and contribute to the overall growth of the business, making RS a standout example of great online experiences across B2B and B2C.
Which brands do you think are doing digital well?
I have a personal affinity with John Lewis. I really like the brand positioning and the way that everyone in the organisation is a part of the great customer experience whether it be online or in store.
The online experience is clean and simple, yet highly functional, making shopping an enjoyable experience – something I always think is the ultimate measure of success!
Do you have any advice for people who want to work in the digital industry?
Put yourself in the shoes of the customer, we are all customers and we have a good idea of what great customer experience is.
If you want to be successful in digital, understand your customer’s needs, be dynamic and innovative in your thinking, focus on value and execute incredibly well.
Plus it always helps to enjoy what you do, and make others feel part of something special; true collaboration is the recipe to success.
Alternatively, if you already work in the digital industry and would like a Day In The Life profile, you can email us via firstname.lastname@example.org.