Back to resources

Manage Default Product Settings for New and Existing Users


13 April, 2021

Ashutosh Dabral
Ashutosh Dabral

Chief Product Officer at Tata CLiQ

Ashutosh Dabral, Chief Product Officer at MoneyTap, talks about how a simple default setting in a product led to a massive spike in call volumes to the call centers and how diligently he fixed it.


For one of the companies where I was the Product Analyst, we did have an online help center. However, when the website failed, users would often resort to calling the call centers. Interestingly, we noticed that users were downloading one particular driver from the website to their laptops in a specific week. After that, we had a huge spike in call volumes to our call centers with some issues. When something is online, we try to approach the problem by looking at the data sets regarding what went wrong. When I looked at the funnel, it was hard for me to figure out what was not working out. Narrowing down to the particular driver that the users were downloading, I discovered that the default settings were 64-bit machines. In contrast, many users with 32-bit devices directly downloaded the driver without changing the default value.

Actions taken

For the first few iterations, I could not think of why the problem was arising. So, I tried the user journey on my own. I sat down with my device and was playing around with the website. That is when I noticed that most users did not change the default value in the drop down, which was set to 64-bit.

The following action was figuring out automatically as to which kind of device the user might be using, and based on that, giving them the right solution without asking them to select it. In a nutshell, it was all about changing the interface so that our devices would do the work on their own.

Instead of asking the user to do the work, we choose the settings for them, depending on the device that they were using. At the same time, our early assumption was that the device configuration is something that every user would know. Since that did not work, we started using the unique service tag number that comes with every device and helped us be aware of a 32-bit machine or a 64-bit machine.

Lessons learned

  • Users are never keen on taking an additional step. Users are all about efficiency and would not fix any bugs or related issues that they may have been facing with their device.
  • The golden rule for inclusive design is never to assume that users know or understand what they are doing. Pinning a checklist to the wall is a great way to perfect the design model all the way through.
  • Dogfood your own product. Don't just launch a product; try it out yourself, and that's when you can anticipate what problems users might be facing in the future.

Discover Plato

Scale your coaching effort for your engineering and product teams
Develop yourself to become a stronger engineering / product leader

Related stories

Scaling a Team in Two Parts: The Product and Manager

2 August

Viswa Mani Kiran Peddinti, Sr Engineering Manager at Instacart, walks through his experience scaling a team, product and his skills as a leader.

Managing Expectations
Scaling Team
Viswa Mani Kiran Peddinti

Viswa Mani Kiran Peddinti

Sr Engineering Manager at Instacart

How Product Management Chose Me

23 June

My accidental journey into product management

Personal Growth
New PM
Career Path
Michael Castro

Michael Castro

Sr. Manager, Product Management at Capital One

How Product Marketing Can (and Should) Help Product Development

20 June

Pavel Safarik, Head of Product at ROI Hunter, discusses the frequently overlooked role of product marketing in getting high user adoption rates for your product.

Goal Setting
Product Team
Different Skillsets
Cross-Functional Collaboration
Pavel Safarik

Pavel Safarik

Head of Product at ROI Hunter

The Intermediate Engineer Syndrome

16 June

How not to stuck at the Intermediate Engineer level

Changing Company
Career Path
Yi Zhang

Yi Zhang

Engineering Manager at Unit21

How to Successfully Rebuild Your Product

6 June

Adir Nashawi, Senior Product Manager at Hibob, shares his insight and experience from rebuilding a product to handle many feature requests and offerings.

Dev Processes
Adir Nashawi

Adir Nashawi

Senior Product Manager at Hibob