The purpose of a Jobs to Be Done framework is to identify the underlying reason why a customer chooses a product or service. The framework is based on the concept that customers hire a product or service for a specific job. Jobs to Be Done was popularized by Harvard Business School professor Clayton M. Christensen as a way to explore disruptive innovations. The framework can be used by marketers to better understand the goals of customers, which can then inform and align product and communication strategy. The Jobs to Be Done framework can also help marketers better understand competitors outside of their immediate product category and identify new or underserved customer needs.
What job are customers hiring this product or service for?
- Customer research is the first step. Design your research to observe people in relevant natural situations. Probe for reasons why a product was chosen, when the need arose, and what alternatives were considered.
- Codify your findings using the framework. Start by describing the situation that leads to the job in the first place. What is the trigger or the set of circumstances that leads the specific customer need?
- Capture the underlying motivation for the job. What is the customer trying to achieve or resolve in this situation? Write all of your sections in the first person as a customer, and start this section with a verb.
- Capture the ultimate outcome that the customer is aiming to realize by hiring a product or service. What needs to happen for the job to be completed successfully? Write this section in a way that it can be measured.
- Jobs to Be Done are not only functional, but they also have an emotional dimension. How will the customer feel after they successfully complete this job? Capture these emotions as specifically as possible.
- Use your Jobs to Be Done to explore the broader competitive defined by jobs, not by your customers or products
- Make sure to recognize if you uncover multiple Jobs to Be Done, and document them separately
- Review Jobs to Be Done are under-served and over-served, and what this means for your brand.
Christensen, C.M., Hall, T., Dillon, K., Duncan, D. “Competing Against Luck: The Story of Innovation and Customer Choice”, Harper Business, 2016