30% growth in new customers

Moving from good to great

Improvement doesn’t always have to mean huge capital expenditure. Sometimes it comes down to reassessing your value proposition and utilising the resources you have at hand in new and innovative ways.

Our client who operated within the Transport category, was already proving an excellent and reliable bus service, but they came to us to get the help they needed to expand outside of simple functionality and provide a customer experience so compelling that it would persuade drivers to get out of their cars and onto the bus.

Initiatives in detail Proto workshop with transport

Innovation Not Expenditure

Innovation always requires investment, but that investment doesn’t always mean spending millions of dollars. Sometimes it means investing the time to truly understand what your customers need and investing the effort to empower your staff to deliver it.

In the case of our Client, no amount of additional buses were going to help tempt customers out of their cars. To become the premier public transport provider in their State, they needed to create a customer experience that was so compelling that people would choose it over the convenience of their personal vehicle.

To create that experience, we needed a clearer picture of what drives a superior customer experience and the drivers behind user choice over the transport methods they use.

The Data That Drives Growth

To build a picture of a customer journey that would provide enough value to tempt people out of their cars, we first needed to understand the current user experience. We reviewed feedback from over 3000 customers to understand existing customer behaviour.

Since Proto works with our customers, not on them, we also interviewed 11 key stakeholders to both understand both the current experience, and the challenges, from their perspective.

Having developed a deeper understanding of their current value proposition and their insight on how they wanted to innovate on it, we turned to customer-led research to provide the data that would drive those innovations.

By reaching out to more than 800 customers across five local areas, we were able to more build more profound insights into their interactions with the service and develop them into a journey map that highlighted both current pain points and opportunities for improvement and innovation.

Growth Ideal Questions

Build a bridge between your Staff and your Customers

What our research quickly revealed was that the interactions between customers and staff, alongside the functionality of their service, was the most significant area of potential improvement.

The drivers deliver 10,000 plus customer experiences every day and empowering them to make every single one of those experience exceptional was critical to the creation of a new and attractive value proposition for the company.

Through online employee surveys, driver interviews, and shadowing team members, we added the driver’s experiences to the journey map, comparing and contrasting them to those of their customers.

These two intertwined journey maps organised feedback from both customers and staff into an easily digestible guide to service development that built in customer empathy and staff support and alignment to the core of the decision making process.

Business impacts to implement

Transforming Understanding
Into Growth

With the current journey of both customer and drivers mapped out, we translated our collected truths into two sets of need states. Four for the customer and four for the driver.

These need states illuminated how to move more car drivers into bus customers by placing the customer experience at the centre of their operational decisions. Just as importantly, it highlighted how the company could leverage the power of their workforce through the right support, training, and workshops, to consistently deliver that experience.

Working hand in hand with stakeholders during a co-creation workshop, we isolated the fundamental challenges in creating this ideal customer experience and designed eight key programs of work to address and overcome those challenges.

Doing Much More With Much Less

When it came right down to it, our Client had the resources they needed to create an innovative and compelling value proposition in the form of their own committed staff. They just needed to know how to leverage it and what exactly their customer’s needs were so their well supported and trained drivers could meet them.

Through customer-led and data-driven service design, we were able to move through every step of the customer journey, identifying moments of truth and empowering staff to improve on them by building customer empathy and understanding into their every decision.

And we didn’t even need to buy a single extra bus.

Transform understanding into growth

Understand your Customers and Grow your business.

Let us help you identify the most important thing about your customers that will unlock your company’s growth.


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