Washington Post publisher Katharine Weymouth announced in a memo that the paper has named Laura Evans, who has spent most of her nine years at the Post as chief researcher, to the newly created position of VP, Chief Experience Officer (CXO).

“As you know, one of the three foundational elements of our strategy is a relentless focus on the customer. While we all care about the customer and try to advocate for the customer, we do not currently have an executive owner of the customer experience. That was acceptable when we published one newspaper a day—when we had a well-honed product with over a century of research behind it. In a day when we have evolved to a 24/7 news operation publishing on multiple platforms, and when we operate in a hyper-competitive market, the customer must be the primary driver of our product-related decisions and changes. Today, we have scores of products that touch our customers in myriad ways—ranging from our flagship newspaper to our growing suite of mobile apps. We must understand the customer experience across and within all of these and other platforms. That understanding must be guided by accurate data and expert analysis of those data. In this regard, the CXO role is a natural extension of Laura’s previous role, where she worked with key leaders across the company to guide our consumer-related decisions with a deeper understanding, based on research and data, of our customers’ behavior, preferences, and interests. [...]

How do we make our products easy to use and navigate? How do we ensure our readers enjoy the experience of using Post products, so that they spend more time interacting with our journalism? By adding Laura’s customer-focused expertise and capabilities throughout the process, we will be better able to achieve those goals.”

Read memo