Product management: put the feedback loop at the heart of IT projects

Yousra Mahros, May 2021

Every IT project involves a large number of your company’s employees. The complexity of these projects requires a real product management strategy. An effective feedback loop is essential throughout the life of the application. It guarantees the efficiency of the development, the respect of the end-users’ needs, and therefore the adoption of the new tools.

1. The feedback loop, a powerful tool for continuous improvement

The feedback loop is a feedback loop in which user feedback is used and analyzed to improve development practices. It is part of a continuous improvement process. During a project, the feedback loop ensures an increase in efficiency. It also allows the next project to be optimized through feedback.

2. Optimize development

Whether it is a question of developing dedicated software from scratch or customizing an application, the work of the developers is essential to ensure the proper functioning of the IT solution. This includes a testing phase by the end users. This allows bugs to be detected in real-life situations and the ergonomics of the tools to be improved in order to guarantee their future adoption.

In this test phase, effective communication between testers and the IT department must be ensured by implementing a feedback management tool. Every piece of feedback from users must be used not only to meet the immediate need, but also to better anticipate new requests. The virtuous circle of the feedback loop is then established.

3. Ensuring the match between needs and proposed solutions

Feedback from end-users helps to ensure that the proposed tools meet their needs. This information is crucial during the development phase. It remains relevant during the deployment phase and throughout the use of the application. Indeed, practices and needs can change. In addition, collaborative intelligence can give rise to new demands, and imply modifying certain tools or creating new ones.

This requires a permanent dialogue between end users, managers and IT. The feedback loop plays a key role in this continuous improvement strategy. Feedback from users allows developers to better understand their needs and practices and to take them into account effectively in the development of new tools.

4. Monitor the level of user adoption

Feedbacks are not only of technical interest. It also reflects the degree of adoption of the software tools by the end-users. Feedbacks that indicate a poor appropriation of functionalities should also be included in the feedback loop.

This valuable feedback must have immediate answers (re-training, improving user documentation, even modifying the tool to make it more ergonomic and adapted). But it should also help improve communication for the next stages of deployment, as well as for future projects. In this way, feedback allows for continuous improvement of development practices and the implementation of new applications.

In your product management strategy, the feedback loop plays a central role. So don’t hesitate to implement a feedback management tool that will allow IT and end users to contribute together to the success of your new applications!