Becoming a customer-centric organization

Telefónica’s transformation into a UX-focused powerhouse

In 2009, Spanish telecommunications giant Telefónica was facing some big challenges. Competition was heating up, and the old ways of keeping customers loyal were dying out. Telefónica needed to add customer insights to their innovation methods and focus on customer needs to deliver products people would want to buy. To do this, the company recognised the need to invest in user experience and find ways to give design a bigger voice inside the organization.

With Telefónica R+D long-standing culture of engineering-led innovation, this change couldn’t happen overnight. The R+D department turned to Fjord’s team of UX and innovation experts to collaborate on the process that would turn Telefónica into one of the world’s most design and people-focused telecoms operators.

Redefining Telefónica’s way of working

A barrier to championing user experience internally at Telefónica was a lack of consistency in approach, and misunderstandings around the value of UX. UX was considered late in the development process only after important strategic decisions about the product definition had been made. Products were often driven by what was technically possible, rather than what would be most valuable to customers.

Telefónica R+D worked with Fjord to create training materials and host design workshops that would educate their engineers and executives. Fjord was instrumental in building the narrative for design and supporting existing designers to change the way they worked.

The benefit of this exercise quickly became a reality. The organization could see the value of a UX-led approach, and with almost immediate effect, Telefónica began to embrace the needs and desires of customers in radically new ways.

Thriving on innovation

Working closely with Fjord, Telefónica has built a thriving UX team. It has transformed into an organization that creates innovative products and services focused on the end user.

Over the past three years, Fjord and Telefónica have collaborated on a number of groundbreaking projects that demonstrate UX at its best. For example, we worked together on designing an integrated video service that gives users fluid access to content across multiple devices. The end result is an entirely new kind of digital video ecosystem that flows beautifully across any screen, letting customers view their content in ways that best fit into their daily lives.

Telefónica has also leveraged Fjord’s heritage in mobile on a range of projects that have helped the organization to set new standards in user experience for energy monitoring, healthcare, communication and finance. The partnership underscores Telefónica’s ongoing commitment to delivering great design in any context, and its ambition and appetite for offering valuable services that enhance their customers’ lives every day.

Fjord was instrumental in starting the Telefónica R&D transformation process from an engineering organisation into one that values customers and UX as drivers for creating great product experiences. They have brought thought leadership, commitment and passion to all of our collaborations. Fjord is definitely one of our most valued partners for creating differentiated products and services.
Pamela Mead Director User Experience, Telefónica Digital