“The Jobs-to-be-Done theory posits that when we buy a product, we essentially “hire” it to help us do a job. If it does the job well, the next time we’re confronted with the same job, we tend to hire that product again. And if it does a crummy job, we “fire” it and look for an alternative.”*
This statement implies that to build a good product that is relevant to its users, we have to have a deep understanding of the jobs that our users need to be done. To help us do this effectively, the JTBD theory provides a framework for defining, categorizing, capturing, and organizing all of a users’ needs.
“Job” is shorthand for what an individual seeks to accomplish in a given circumstance.
Piggyvest is a great example of a product built around the Jobs-to-be-Done framework.
It defines and creates a solution to a problem that almost everyone has, saving money (unless you’re Dangote), by allowing people to set up automated debits to their bank accounts, gamifying savings targets and offering great returns, and stiff default penalties to a long-term saving feature. Thus enabling easier saving and arguably, more importantly, helping their users develop better saving habits.
The product then extends this problem definition to; “what to do with all this saved money?”. They tackled this by aggregating and offering low-risk investment opportunities; offering custom naira and dollar-denominated savings accounts; incentivising additional savings by rewarding customers with ‘Piggy points’ that can be converted to cash and referral bonuses for onboarding even more savers.
In essence, Piggyvest concentrated on making their users’ needs (jobs-to-be-done) easier and more intuitive. Everyone wants to save but only a few people like saving — so; they made saving seamless and fun.
I believe that the product offering can and will eventually be extended to cater to all of their users’ financial needs — low hanging fruits would be miro credit and insurance targeted at covering electronic devices and assets like cars; purchase financing for more expensive assets; BNPL features for smaller purchases, etc.
They could also develop an independent credit scoring system that can be built into a SaaS product where traditional financial providers, commodity traders, government institutions etc, can pay to ascertain the financial status of prospective customers.
The possibilities are endless.
The fact that Piggyvest clearly defined the main job to be done (better money-saving) and then went on to identify the related jobs to be done (what to do with the saved money) and has continued to provide solutions accordingly will ensure that they do not have to guess what features they need to roll out next and will constantly give them an edge over anyone silly enough to compete with them without the same mindset.
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* = Quoted from Know Your Customers’ “Jobs to Be Done” (2016)
PS: This isn’t a puff piece. I wrote it as part of a job application and only thought to publish it partly because I didn’t get the job (LOL) and partly because I stumbled on this really good Medium article tackling the same subject.