Josh Bob

Product Portfolio

Data Quality for SMBs

Experian Data Quality

During my time at Experian, I ran a team of 7 (3 PMs + 4 engineers) which was tasked with a two-part mission: own all custom integrations of EDQ software into partner software, and act as the product innovation team for the Data Quality division. In this latter role, my team was asked to examine both internal processes and external-facing products and build proofs-of-concept to improve them.

Problem

Experian Data Quality (EDQ) had a flagship on-demand (web API) product that allowed customers’ web forms to validate contact data, including mailing address, email, and phone number. However, implementation of this product required a minimum of two days of professional services consulting at a cost of $250 per hour – $4,000 in up-front fees – effectively taking EDQ out of the long-tail SMB market.

Action

After a series of conversations with internal salespeople and consultants as well as customers and prospects, my team determined that there was strong interest in contact data validation from smaller companies, but that the consulting price tag was a major deterrent. As we examined the rationale behind mandating 16 hours of consulting, we discovered that it was due to the software being complex – primarily because the service was tailored to enterprise customers. There was no “DIY” option for tech-savvy businesses that just wanted a single form to validate a few fields.

Results

Acting as the product lead, I devised a tool called “Project Phoenix” – because it represented burning down our assumptions about how the on-demand product was implemented and allowing a new method to “rise from the ashes.” Working under the “grandma test” principle (that the tool needed to be simple enough for someone’s grandmother to use it), my team created an overlay that walked the user through a simple one-time point-and-click interface on their own website. This created a JavaScript snippet that they could cut and paste into their page code to integrate the full range of contact data validation tools… in under 5 minutes!

This proof-of-concept was then built into the full release of the SaaS product, and went on to become an immensely popular tool that gave EDQ significantly better reach into the SMB market.

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