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Never before have product teams been forced to absorb the pain points of their users first-hand like they are today. As companies deploy distributed workforces around the globe, the teams that are tasked with developing and implementing new products are now often utilizing products the same way their consumers are.

“Everybody talks about digital transformation, but the COVID-19 situation rapidly accelerated and expanded that. Now you have businesses like a fitness center or restaurant that have gone like completely digital. All their classes are via zoom and they’re doing contactless delivery, ordering and payments. These businesses that maybe never thought of the term digital transformation are now completely digital. And the team that I work with every day is helping enable that — whether it’s by deploying wifi platforms or making sure that the broadband network has the right type of bandwidth products. And so it’s a really great position to be in, to be able to help people get through all this.”

That’s Christian Nascimento, the Vice President of Product Management and Strategy for Comcast Business. Christian joined IT Visionaries to discuss how Comcast was able to adjust its infrastructure to account for the mass influx of employees working from home, and he gives some insight into the products they’ve developed during the COVID-19 pandemic to ease the employee experience. Plus, he lets us know why the silver lining to times like these is the ability to gather high-value feedback.

Main Takeaways

  • Meeting A Demand: The ability to scale and meet the growing needs of your customers has never been more important than it is today. When Comcast Business was met with an influx of customers working from home, the company had to make sure that its infrastructure could not only meet the demand of new customers, but also manage the large influx of traffic.
  • Can you Validate This?: When you are developing products and services, make sure the products you’re producing satisfy a need and not just a want. Before you start producing something, gather feedback from your users to make sure that it’s solving a problem for them.
  • Office Space: Distributed workforces now mean workers are no longer forced to work within the confines of an office building. One of the things that has made remote work more readily available is the development of cloud-based applications.

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For a more in-depth look at this episode, check out the article below.


Never before have product teams been forced to absorb the pain points of their users first-hand like they are today. As companies deploy distributed workforces around the globe, the teams that are tasked with developing and implementing new products are now often utilizing products the same way their consumers are.

“Everybody talks about digital transformation, but the COVID-19 situation rapidly accelerated and expanded that. Now you have businesses like a fitness center or restaurant that have gone like completely digital. All their classes are via zoom and they’re doing contactless delivery, ordering and payments. These businesses that maybe never thought of the term digital transformation are now completely digital. And the team that I work with every day is helping enable that — whether it’s by deploying wifi platforms or making sure that the broadband network has the right type of bandwidth products. And so it’s a really great position to be in, to be able to help people get through all this.”

That’s Christian Nascimento, the Vice President of Product Management and Strategy for Comcast Business. Christian joined IT Visionaries to discuss how Comcast was able to adjust its infrastructure to account for the mass influx of employees working from home, and he gives some insight into the products they’ve developed during the COVID-19 pandemic to ease the employee experience. Plus, he lets us know why the silver lining to times like these is the ability to gather high-value feedback.

Comcast business sits within the larger Comcast brand. Nascimento’s department is responsible for connecting millions of users with cable and internet across the continental United States, while providing services to thousands of small businesses, from local hair salons to Fortune 1,000 companies.

Now, with more small businesses deploying distributed workforces, Nascimento said the role his team plays is more important than ever before.

“The distributed workforce now means that you don’t have to sit in an office all day to do your job,” he said. “People are moving out of cities and moving into different states. They’re moving where they want to live. What we found is that because of technology and cloud-based applications, internet connectivity and particularly gigabit speeds, it’s really become easy for people to work at a job from anywhere.” 

As more small businesses allow their employees the freedom to work remotely, Nascimento said they were fortunate enough that the infrastructure of their network was designed to handle large influxes of traffic at given points in time.

“We built our network just for this type of situation, where you see big peaks and big swings in usage and peak time,” Nascimento said. “We felt really comfortable that the network was built in a way that we would be able to handle this.”

While Nascimento admitted they did see big changes across their network — especially when it came to usage during peak times — he said these changes were not just because people were shifting where they were working, but it had to do with the massive amounts of traffic at-home units were seeing. No longer were Comcast users utilizing their internet connections only for streaming and browsing — now children were participating in e-learning activities and the adults were running meetings and working over Zoom. 

One of the ways Nascimento and his team helped ease the burden of at-home work was by allowing their customers the ability to implement a new product and service his team developed called Comcast Business at Home. Comcast Business at Home allows customers to have a second modem inside their home to handle the high volume of traffic that their traditional unit may have been experiencing.

“No matter how great the network is, if you have multiple individuals in a home and they’re streaming and they’re using a lot of online tools, there’s going to be taxing that node,” he said. “What we’ve done with Comcast Business at Home is we’ve introduced the idea of a second modem into the home, a second line into the house, which can be paid for by the employer. So the idea would be your employer has sent you home either temporarily or on a permanent basis. Now they can bring reliability [to an employees internet]. It’s almost like extending the corporate network by putting additional internet infrastructure into the employee’s home.” 

So how has this changed the thought process of CIOs and CTOs? Nascimento said one of the biggest factors is the future of work has changed what those technology leaders now view as necessities, rather than wants.

“The requirements are changing,” Nascimento said. “One of the outcomes of [remote work] is that some employees like the flexibility. CIOs and CTOs are thinking about how they manage their on-prem structure now.”

So as a product developer, how has Nascimento and Comcast pivoted their workflow during the last year, and what has their philosophy centered on? He says one of the biggest revelations has been that customer feedback — especially in 2020 — has never been more important.

“It’s really about focusing on what the customer needs are,” he said. “How do we go in and how do we effectuate that change is going to help that consumer with whatever they need? It’s really thinking about what’s going to have the most impact on the most customers. How do we bring that to market in a way that’s going to be easy for them to understand? The technology has to be really easy to understand, easy to take action on.”

To build on that, Nascimento said his product philosophy is to always make sure that you are building for a need and that the features that you are bringing to the market are solving a problem.

“If you’re going to layer a new feature or launch a new product, you want to make sure that it’s going to be something that meets a need,” Nascimento said. “It’s nderstanding the space, understanding the segment, understanding the needs that are out there, and how we can bring a solution to fill that need in a way that’s going to be not only beneficial to our customer base, but something that we can do that maybe nobody else can or something that we can do better than anybody else.”

One of the ways Comcast Business has been able to make sure that it is supplying its customers with desired products is the ways Nascimento and his team gather feedback from their customers. One of the ways he and his team have gathered intel through the years is through surveys, but also through personal experiences, including going door-to-door to see where the customers’ pain points are.

“A great example is [of gathering feedback is] when we launched Comcast business Smart Office,” Nascimento said. “A colleague and I walked up and down the street in Philadelphia and went into small businesses to understand what their needs were and just asked a couple of questions. That actually helped us evolve our thinking and go in a different direction than we initially thought. So it’s really about understanding the space and the segment, but then validating that and making sure that you don’t fall into the trap of doing something that you believe is right without validating that.” 

To hear more about the ways in which Comcast Business has helped businesses manage their digital transformations through 2020, check out the full episode of IT Visionaries.

To hear the entire discussion, tune into IT Visionaries here

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