20 October 2015

The human element of the digital experience

Tags:UX, Strategy, Innovation, Digital Transformation

In today’s digital landscape, people – on both sides of interactions – are perhaps more important than ever. One automobile company provides a prime example.

Electric carmaker Tesla, as a company, is trying to reinvent how the motoring industry works. The organisation has already fundamentally re-engineered how cars work, but it’s also re-engineered how you sell cars.

For a long time, the only way to buy a Tesla was to order it online. There were no dealerships, no stores – you couldn’t even go to see one. But people wanted them so badly that they would just order them off the net and have them delivered.

The all-digital dilemma

So this was a car company with a completely digital experience. But most people won’t do this. Most people want to see what a car looks like. They probably want to sit in it, and, understandably, they might want to take it for a test-drive. So more and more, Tesla has recognised this and is opening showrooms. Ultimately, when you want to buy a Tesla, you still configure it and purchase it online – and you still get free delivery – but now customers can go check them out in person.

What started out as a totally digital experience now has a human element. When you go to a showroom, you’re going to interact with a person.

Human acumen

And although Tesla’s digital experience is fantastic and the company is doing very well, if the human experience played out like a clichéd used-car-salesman encounter, everything the company has achieved could all fall down.

So even though the digital experience and digital transformation are very important, we can’t forget that people play a vital role in all of this.

People are expensive: employees cost a lot of money relative to computers. They’re also fallible and hard to quality control, but more and more, they’re reserved for the most important and most high-value elements of transactions.

The (human) moment of truth

Yes, you can basically buy a Tesla online, but for most people, when it comes down to the crunch, you’re going to test-drive it, and you’re going to experience an individual. And it’s that experience with that human that can be a moment of truth in your purchase.

So although the nature of person-to-person interactions is changing, those interactions are actually becoming more important – even though there are fewer of them.

More articles for you

All blog articles

Join the Conversation

Contact us

We look forward to hearing from you

We take your privacy seriously
Back to the top of this page
Get our latest resources and blog articles Subscribe No thanks