Designed new growth plan for business unit at risk of closure

The Client

Aspect delivers world-class care to both children and adults on the autism spectrum and operates one of the biggest autism-specific school programs in the world. They're highly trained and experienced in working with individuals with autism and related conditions.

The Aspect philosophy is built on the belief that every individual has unique strengths, abilities, and potential. They work hard to ensure that every person they support reaches their fullest potential.

As Australia's largest provider of autism-specific services, Aspect is able to offer a wide range of support options. They can provide everything from early intervention and school programs to employment and community living support.

Photo of aspect staff with children Key themes and insights artefact

The problem

Aspect came to us because they wanted to understand the larger ecosystem in which they worked, and identify how they could provide the best possible support to parents and families.

We worked on two different projects with Aspect - Education and Adult community services. The first was to develop a deeper understanding of the needs of parents and caregivers of people on the autism spectrum. The second was to help them support carers and parents dealing with the potentially limited educational paths available to their children post-school.

Through our research, we were able to help them develop a much deeper understanding of the needs of parents and caregivers, allowing them to create more targeted and effective support programs.

By taking the time to understand the larger ecosystem, they were able to have a much greater positive impact on the lives of their clients and their families, combating the isolation and loneliness that so often comes with caring for someone with autism.

Aspect customer journey artefact

We remove the barriers between your people and your customers

Once we had a clear understanding of what Aspect needed, we needed to build a clearer picture of what support carers and parents really needed. We used a number of research techniques, including user interviews, online surveys, and desk research, to build up a robust understanding of the challenges they faced.

By meeting with key stakeholders, examining best practices from the wider industry and charitable sector, and talking to both current and lapsed customers, we were able to understand what Aspect’s USP meant to people, and how it could be improved.

We quickly identified that carers and parents could feel isolated, both from society in general and from each other.

They also felt that they didn’t have enough information about post-school education and employment options for their children and that they needed more support in navigating the education system.

Aspect need states artefact

By knowing more, you have the ability to be more

We were able to identify four basic need states that carers and parents expressed when it came to their children’s education. These were: a need for clarity, a need for confidence, a need for a feeling of care and support, and a need for more community connection.

Proto was able to use these need states to help Aspect connect with its audience on a deeper level, and communicate its unique value proposition in a way that resonated.

By isolating and resolving one of the most foundational worries parents had, 'what happens after they finish school?' Aspect was able to create a sense of comfort and peace of mind.

The new brand strategy positions Aspect as the 'go-to' provider of services and support for families with children on the autism spectrum, both now and in the future.

Aspect ideal journey displayed in a stack

Design valuable experiences your customers will love

Likewise, with the Adult Community Services (ACS) program, we used behavioural change principles to develop a new customer value proposition and brand strategy that provides and highlights the support offered to parents and caregivers of people with autism.

By listening to the voice of the customer and understanding their specific needs, we were able to develop a brand strategy that will resonate with this important audience.

By turning data into actual actionable insights, Proto was able to increase the level of trust and confidence families have in Aspect as an organisation that can provide long-term support.

In turn, Aspect was better able to communicate the positive difference it makes in the lives of people with autism and their families and reassess the level of care they supplied to the parents of those on the autism spectrum.

This in-depth understanding of the customer has allowed Aspect to develop a brand that families can trust and feel confident in.

Customer insights video thumbnails displayed as a film reel

We provide the insight, understanding and clarity
on what to do

Aspect has always been seen as an organisation that makes a positive difference in the lives of people with autism. They are now also seen as a brand that cares for and supports the families as much as they care for individuals with autism.

Sometimes even the most expert professionals can be unsure about how to effectively support those outside of their area of expertise.

With the insights provided by Proto, Aspect were able to provide an additional layer of support for families, carers and professionals who work with people on the autism spectrum, providing expert advice, guidance and consultation services from a team of highly experienced professionals.

By amplifying the voice of the customer and understanding their needs, Aspect is able to provide a more holistic and comprehensive service that meets the needs of the individual, as well as the families and professionals who support them.

Delivering phenomenal outcomes

“Working with Proto was a leap of faith, but they have become a major strategic partner in our CX evolution. The work they've developed and the way we've been able to embed it in the organisation has been absolutely phenomenal, and we're getting the outcomes we want.”

Felicity Clark
Felicity Clark Customer Experience Manager

Creating empathy to deliver outstanding results

“Proto were a pleasure to work with. They were adaptive and responsive, and developed a deep empathy for both the client and their customers. The quality of their products and services was outstanding.”

Michael Storey
Michael Storey Manager of Customer Research and Strategy at Sydney Water

Halving your customer churn

“Without the customer experience insights from the research program, we would not have been able to identify the acquisition issues that we had. Changes to the customer interactions that led up to financial protection have reduced the outflow rates by 50%.”

Felicity Rowcliff Dean
Felicity Rowcliff Dean Customer Centred Design Manager

Take your NPS score to the next level

“From an NPS perspective, I have gone Spinal Tap on you guys and gone to 11. I still think the work you did with us, the way you went about it and the deliverables amounted to one of the best pieces of consulting advice I've ever commissioned.”

Matthew Liebmann
Matthew Liebmann Former Chief Operating Officer

Enabling customer-centric design

“Over the last 18 months, we've constantly referred to the work Proto did for us when designing and developing all the improvements to the app we're making. We've found their work to be highly valuable and has resulted in significant improvements to the MyOptus App that, without their insight wouldn't have been possible.”

Lucy Turner
Lucy Turner CX Design Launch Manager

Exceptional prototyping

“The outcome of the prototyping has been exceptional and we continue to use the knowledge and expertise that Proto shared with us during their engagement. The icing on the cake for me was that Proto captured all of the insights from the customer workshops into an organisational asset that we now use as an integral part of our toolkit for training and briefing new team members.”

Sharon Nanetti
Sharon Nanetti Optimal Care Program Director

Prioritising what matters

“Proto's in-depth customer research helped us to uncover underlying customer needs that wouldn't have been possible without an 'outside-in' approach. The team identified the core customer problems and provided actionable insights that enabled us to remove key areas of customer friction and frustration and redesign a credit card experience like no other.”

Christian Johansson
Christian Johansson Head of Marketing, Customer Finance

Achieving a 20 point increase in NPS

“I have worked with Damian and the team at Proto for several years. In this time, they have worked collaboratively with us to build a roadmap of strategic 'outside-in' initiatives that ultimately resulted in a 20 point increase in NPS. They imparted a great deal of CX knowledge, approaches and tools that have been invaluable to the team and the business.”

Amanda O'Donnell
Amanda O'Donnell Head of Customer Experience

Insight driven, customer centric ideas

“Proto revealed and captured a ton of insights, putting Gumtree in a position where we can take our experience from good to great!”

Coen Horrevoets
Coen Horrevoets Head of Product

Award-winning customer experiences

“We won the AFR Smart Investor SMILES award for Best Online Broker. This award is based on customer voting and I believe this was as a result of a clearer focus on our existing clients which you helped us to understand.”

Arni Selvarajah
Arnie Selvarajah Chief Executive Officer

Design that reduces cost to serve

“The Proto team demonstrated flexibility in their approach which made such a refreshing change. They took the time to coach and mentor each of us in a highly creative and energetic environment. Furthernore, they helped us exceed our customer satisfaction targets, all whilst stripping out in excess of 20% of our service costs in under 12 months. Proto helped us to stay focussed on the customer which enabled us to win in the market.”

Matthew Anderson
Matthew Anderson Chief Operating Officer

Service innovation at scale

“We worked with Proto on an exciting & unprecedented challenge at Optus, to design the customer experience of the future. Damian & the team had high energy & together we operated as 'one team'. Proto worked hand in hand with us to bring the internal team up to speed, & also brought in global experts to work with us to take our deliverables to another level of quality & innovation.”

Dan Sunderland
Dan Sunderland Director of Customer Experience Strategy and Planning

Actionable Customer Strategies

“Proto developed a membership strategy that addressed points of friction along our members journey, identified opportunities to improve and clarified the types of engagement that our members needed at the different stages in their career. We were impressed with the depth of insight that Proto were able to bring to the project - as well as the energy and ideas that they helped to generate.”

Sarah Thompson
Sarah Prescott-Thompson General Manager Shared Services

A partnership for CX

“Working with Proto was very much a partnership. We worked hand-in-hand to put CX on the map within the organisation. The team are flexible, trustworthy and do what it takes to achieve the best outcome. If you’re looking for a quality agency, providing quality data and insights – Proto are your guys. We received over 90 initiatives from the project of which 79% have now been implemented and we are seeing the benefits flow through!”

Customer Experience Specialist

Unique Product Innovation

“Proto integrated into multiple simultaneous projects to ensure we achieved the best outcome. They brought real clarity around customer needs, the fundamental elements of our value proposition and provided a clear roadmap of where we're trying to get to. This allowed us to differentiate beyond the traditional proposition. As a result, one customer-informed initiative we developed was loanScore™. This unique innovation helps customers see how good their home loan is and evaluate their options for a better deal.”

Anthony Justice
Anthony Jusitce CEO