Unlock Project Speed with the ‘What, So What, Now What’ Feedback Framework

IGNITE® Digital Agency - 07 September 2023

The ‘What, So What, Now What’ Framework: A Comprehensive Guide for Efficient Feedback

In the fast-paced world of design and development, receiving clear and actionable feedback is paramount. Without constructive critiques, progress can be slow, and misunderstandings frequent. Enter the ‘What, So What, Now What’ framework—a proven method to ensure both parties are on the same page.

If you’re working with a design team using Figma or other design platforms, this framework can be a game-changer for your project. This approach makes sure that clients articulate their feedback in a way that facilitates quick action and smooth communication.

What Is the ‘What, So What, Now What’ Framework?

The framework divides feedback into three clear sections:

  1. What: This is the point where the client identifies the issue or explains what happened.
  2. So What: Here, the client elaborates on why the issue matters or what the underlying problem is.
  3. Now What: Finally, the client offers a suggestion or action plan to resolve the issue.

By adhering to this structure, you’re more likely to get feedback that is both detailed and actionable.

Real-World Examples of The Framework in Action

To give you a better idea of how this framework works, let’s delve into some examples.

Example 1: Slow Page Load Time


The homepage takes forever to appear. I could make a cup of tea in the time it takes to load!

So What

It’s frustrating, and I almost clicked away. Others might do the same, and you’d lose potential customers.

Now What

Could you make the homepage appear more quickly? I don’t know how it’s done, but quicker is definitely better.

Example 2: Confusing Navigation


I had a tough time figuring out where to go on the site. The buttons and menus weren’t clear to me.

So What

I got lost and almost gave up. If I can’t navigate your site, I’m less likely to make a purchase.

Now What

Perhaps make the buttons more straightforward and the menus easier to understand? Keep it simple so people like me can find their way.

Example 3: Inconsistency in Branding Elements


The colours and fonts look different depending on what part of the site I’m on.

So What

It doesn’t look very professional, and it undermines my confidence in your brand.

Now What

Could you make all the pages look the same, in terms of colours and fonts? Consistency would make it feel more cohesive.

Why Use This Framework?

  • Clarity: By splitting the feedback into these categories, both the design team and the client are clear on the problem, its impact, and the potential solution.
  • Speed: With a clear understanding of the issues at hand, designers can action tasks much more quickly.
  • Improved Communication: This framework opens the lines of communication, helping to avoid misunderstandings that can derail a project.

How Marketing Managers Can Boost Supplier Efficiency with the ‘What, So What, Now What’ Framework 

Are you a Marketing Manager coordinating with external design or development agencies? Smooth communication is the linchpin for project speed and success. The ‘What, So What, Now What’ framework can be your ace in the hole for ensuring faster, clearer feedback from your suppliers. Here’s a quick guide:

  1. Educate Everyone: Quickly brief your team and suppliers on the framework. Show how it helps clarify expectations and speeds up project timelines. A simple guide or a brief video will do the trick.
  2. Use a Standard Template: Distribute a ‘What, So What, Now What’ template to your suppliers. This makes sure you get actionable feedback, cutting down on back-and-forths.
  3. Quick Team Reviews: Once feedback arrives, hold a swift team meeting to allocate tasks. The framework’s structure should make it easy to identify who does what next.
  4. Measure and Fine-Tune: Regularly check on how well the framework is working. Look at speed metrics and supplier satisfaction to see if tweaks are needed.

Implementing this framework can take you a long way in reducing project bottlenecks, ensuring everyone’s on the same page. It’s a straightforward method to streamline your supplier interactions without sacrificing quality.