Prioritizing Opportunities

Prioritizing Opportunities

This guide explains how you can score and prioritize opportunities quickly en effectively.

After you create a number of opportunities, it’s time to decide which ones to pick up next. To help you do that, TheyDo enables you to score and compare opportunities across journeys. In this article we explain:

Before diving into this subject, make sure you’ve read our intro into opportunities, where we explain how you can use opportunities in your journey management workflow.

Prioritization criteria

TheyDo enables you to score opportunities using criteria that are often referred to as the ‘3 lenses of innovation’: Customer value, business value, and effort. 

Together, these values give you a good lense to start comparing opportunities. Leave one out, and you will either fail to attract customers (not enough customer value), lose money (not enough business value), or fail to deliver (effort). That’s why the intersection of all three is often referred to as the innovation ‘sweet spot’.

Customer value

Customer value describes how much positive impact an opportunity might have on customer experience. This positive impact might consist of;

  • Emotional value – Will it help customers feel better?
  • Functional value – Will it help customers satisfy their functional needs in a better way? 
  • Social value – will it help customers gain social connection or recognition?

Business value

Business value describes how valuable an opportunity is for the business. This value is often determined by aspects such as:

  • Cost reduction – for example by saving time for employees, or limiting expensive processes (such as help desk calls).
  • Revenue increase – for example by increasing traffic or publicity 

Effort

Effort describes how complex an opportunity might be to implement. This complexity might be:

  • Technical: Do we have the technical capability to implement the opportunity?
  • Operational: Can we align our business operation in such a way that we can implement the opportunity?
  • Legal: Are we legally allowed to implement an opportunity?

Although this will often be a rough estimation at this point, the solutions linked to an opportunity might provide you with a rough idea of how much effort it could be to implement the opportunity.

Scoring opportunities in TheyDo

Because TheyDo enables you to link an opportunity to multiple journey steps, or different journeys, it doesn’t matter where you score the opportunity. You can open an opportunity from the repository, or open the Opportunity card from a journey.

Adding a customer and a business value

  • On the Opportunity hit the Edit button to go into edit mode
  • Using the value sliders, drag the value for the Customer value and the Business value
  • Hit Save

Your opportunity now has a value score for Customer and Business value, and an average value combining both values.

Adding an effort score

Effort is related to the Solutions you need to implement to address the opportunity in full. Because TheyDo enables you to first align on Opportunities before going into solution discovery and development mode, Effort is often an ongoing variable. Based on the solution effort needed:

  • On the opportunity hit the Edit button to go into edit mode
  • In the right sidebar, hover over the Effort value and click to set it
  • Hit Save

If there are known solution ideas, or perhaps features or innovations that are already being shipped – adding them to the Opportunity is a good idea. It’s also OK to revisit the effort scoring if you have new information.

Using the opportunity matrix to prioritize

When it comes to scoring and selecting opportunities, it helps a great deal when you’re able to have a visual overview of how your opportunities score in relation to each other. The opportunity matrix visually guides you to make decisions.

  • From the purple menu in the main section of TheyDo, click on the Opportunity icon.
  1. Filter opportunities to only show opportunities that are relevant for you or your team. For example, filter opportunities related to a single journey, team, or product domain.

  2. Switch axis to compare. The matrix shows you how opportunities score in relation to each other. You can choose from two views that are complementary to each other:
  • Compare Customer vs business value shows how opportunities compare in terms of their customer and business values. This is often a great place to start prioritizing, since it helps you determine the total value of your opportunities (which is a combination of business and customer value) without having to consider effort yet.
  • Value vs effort shows the total value of your opportunities against the effort necessary to implement an opportunity. This is often where you will be able to make your final selection of opportunities to pick up next, because it places opportunities in 4 distinct quadrants:

    Quick Wins – Bottom right: opportunities that give a lot of value and can be realized quickly.
    Big bets – Top right: opportunities that can bring great value, but are also difficult to implement.
    Maybes – Bottom left: opportunities that do not bring much value, but are easily implemented. 
    Time Sinks – Top left: opportunities that will take a lot of effort but won’t deliver much value – don’t bother about these.

5 Tips to improve your estimations

Estimating your opportunities at this point will often involve making assumptions. To help you make the best possible estimates, here are five tips:

  • Define your opportunities clearly. The more clearly you define opportunities, the easier it will be for you to estimate their potential impact. Use the opportunity checklist in our guide on creating opportunities before you prioritize your opportunities.
  • Score opportunities in relation to each other. With every opportunity you score, ask yourself if a criterion should score higher or lower in relation to the opportunities that already have been scored.
  • Use linked solutions to estimate effort. If you have already linked solutions to opportunities, they might provide you with a better understanding of the effort needed to implement an opportunity.
  • Include a broad range of experts when estimating these scores, for example by hosting a co-creative prioritization session where you follow the . This helps ensure you make decisions based on a wide range of perspectives and collective experience. Business managers, financial experts, or process experts can help estimate business value, marketeers, service- and UX designers can help estimate customer value, and software engineers or other tech experts can help to estimate effort.
  • Include your customers to help you estimate customer value. After all, they are the experts of their own experience. Ask them what opportunity would create the most value for them; Questionnaires or card sorting are ideal research methods to do this.

Further reading

Now that you know all about creating and prioritizing opportunities, here are several related to read next:


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