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Collaboration in a customer-centric culture

Delivering on a subscriber focused mission requires teams at the FT to work in a multi-disciplinary way, focusing on customer outcomes as opposed to individual team deliverables. Each team has the freedom to determine how they work and collaborate, with the north star goal and customer outcomes as the key metrics of success. This results in powerful and direct collaboration between teams, particularly on products like myFT.

“The product team wanted to know whether customers were finding myFT useful, and if not, why not, and what could they change about it to improve it. The FT data scientists worked with the product, myFT and tech teams to work out the patterns of behaviour that increased engagement with myFT.

The teams found that users weren’t following enough topics or they were following the wrong types of topics. With over 50,000 topics to choose from it was clear how this might happen. The data scientists worked on finding out how many topics a person needs to follow to find myFT useful, through looking at metrics like: how often did they look at the myFT feed? and how often did they engage with the feed?

Alongside the tech team, the data scientists created various products and models to build recommendations on which topics a user of myFT should follow, to reduce confusion and churn for customers. Since the product team and myFT team were already involved, these models could be quickly incorporated into the site, and rolled out to the customer, increasing engagement compared to a control group.”

Oliver Elliott, Lead Data Scientist

This flexible and collaborative approach also extends to the selection of tooling across the business.

“The FT allows its teams to choose the tools and methods of working that they find best for them. This has led to an environment where people feel they can innovate and experiment with new tools & ideas which makes the workplace more entrepreneurial and more open to change. It also means that people gravitate towards good ideas, rather than being forced to follow a rule-book that might be outdated, or doesn’t work for everyone.”

Matt Chadburn, Technical Director for Internal Products

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