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Lisa Min

Lisa Min

Akendi Alumnus

Journey Mapping vs. Task Analysis

Journey Mapping is becoming an increasingly popular tool in the UX world.  They are often used to gain a better understanding of the overall customer/user experience across all platforms and touchpoints.

Creating a journey map can help organizations pinpoint gaps in the overall customer/user experience, which makes it easier to identify areas for product innovation.  This can help feed and prioritize projects in the product backlog when organizations aren’t sure what to work on next.

So what exactly is an End-to-End Journey Map? I like to think of them as the emotional love child of Task Analysis and Customer Journeys.   However, since each of these tools are more or less representations of how a user carries out tasks to accomplish a particular goal or set of goals, there can be some confusion regarding when we should use one over the other.

When should we use a Journey Map versus a Task Analysis? It depends on the type of question you’re trying to answer or problem you are attempting to solve.  Understanding what some of the differences are between the two might help you determine which tool is best for you.

3 Ways Journey Mapping Differs From Task Analysis

Level of Detail

Both Journey Mapping and Task Analysis include a great level of detail in the analysis.  However, a Journey Map differs from Task Analysis because it doesn’t necessarily capture the granularity of each step in a process that a task analysis would include.

Emotions vs Emotionless

A Journey Map captures more than just what tasks are involved but also how a user feels and what they are thinking as they flow through the experience lifecycle.  Task Analysis doesn’t typically include emotions or feelings; it’s more a straight arrow in that sense.

Visual Representation

A Journey Map can be represented in visually rich formats, such as an infographic that can present a wealth of information at a glance.  Task Analysis on the other hand is often represented using a collection of boxes and arrows depicting the step-by-step flow between tasks.

So it becomes less of a ‘this’ versus ‘that’ when you look a bit closer.  Both tools are useful for different purposes so think about what questions you are trying to answer and choose the right tool for you – Journey Mapping or Task Analysis.

If you are looking for more information on Journey Mapping, we have a course on how to conduct Journey Mapping research and analysis.

Lisa Min

Lisa Min

Akendi Alumnus


Hi Lisa,

i was looking for an explanation of this issue and found your to be clear and precise. Thanks!

P.S. Would be great if there was a depiction to compare them.

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Akendi is a human experience design firm, leveraging equal parts experience research and creative design excellence. We provide strategic insights and analysis about customer and user behaviour and combine this knowledge with inspired design. The results enable organizations to improve effectiveness, engage users and provide remarkable customer experiences to their audiences.