design research for everyday projects - ux london

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design research for everyday’ projects UX London 09 leisa reichelt disambiguity .com @leisa

Author: leisa-reichelt

Post on 17-Aug-2014




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slides from my workshop on Design Research for Everyday Projects


  • design research for everyday projects UX London 09 leisa reichelt @leisa
  • this is not really about user centred design
  • to solve a problem you must first understand it - kim goodwin
  • its about good design
  • who is this workshop for?
  • everyday projects? the design research projects you hear about most often are enormous, time consuming and expensive. most projects we work on cant bear that. research can/should be customised to suit the project requirements
  • what well cover PART ONE: Designing Design Research PART TWO: Conducting Design Research PART THREE: Analysing Design Research LOTS of hands on exercises. Lots of your questions & shared experiences Focus on QUALITATIVE Research (esp. interview format) Focus more on practical what you can actually do than best practice
  • part 1: designing design research
  • what is design research? activities that seek insight into user behaviour, goals and needs that might be supported by the design of products/services
  • why do design research? we tend to project our own rationalisations and beliefs onto the actions and beliefs of others - don norman, the design of everyday things
  • why do design research? design research helps you uncover, understand and design for real user needs
  • real user needs = design for good usability but also = insight for inspiration/validation
  • when to do design research?
  • generative research prototype evaluative research
  • design research toolkit Qualitative Stakeholder Interviews Co-design/Participatory Design Subject Matter Expert (SME) Interviews Group/Social Research Competitive Reviews Longitudinal Research - diary study Literature Reviews -twitter - flickr Depth Interviews (Customer&User) Focus Groups Direct Observation (Ethnography) Quantitative Contextual Inquiry Surveys Usability Testing Remote Testing Tools Snap Interviews Stats/Analytics
  • quantitative Vs qualitative
  • mathematics and natural sciences Quantitative statistically sound, scientific large random samples questionnaires, surveys, tests Quantitative research is the systematic scientific investigation of quantitative properties and phenomena and their relationships. The objective of quantitative research is to develop and employ mathematical models, theories and/or hypotheses pertaining to natural phenomena. The process of measurement is central to quantitative research because it provides the fundamental connection between empirical observation and mathematical expression of quantitative relationships.
  • social sciences insight gathering, exploratory small sample sizes Qualitative participatory, observational, interviews, analysis of documents & materials. Qualitative research ...aim(s) to gather an in-depth understanding of human behavior and the reasons that govern human behavior. Qualitative research relies on reasons behind various aspects of behavior. Simply put, it investigates the why and how of decision making, not just what, where, and when.
  • To design an easy-to-use interface, pay attention to what users do, not what they say. Self-reported claims are unreliable, as are user speculations about future behaviour. - jakob nielson
  • choose qualitative for insight but ideally, combine quantitative and qualitative inputs quantitative can be great for problem identification & solution validation
  • how to choose?
  • stock standard / garden variety plan 45-60 minute interviews 6-8 participants. but...
  • understanding the problem: what are you trying to learn? - the problem is not always what it first appears to be - define your research questions - what might be the best ways to answer those questions?
  • understanding the problem: what is the context for the problem? - care not to narrow the context early - are their multiple relevant contexts? - WHERE can we learn about the peoples behaviour in relation to this problem? - research as close to context as possible.
  • remember: the power of artifacts - memory aid / detail - cross check for accuracy
  • ...dont be afraid of getting a bit creative
  • ...ethical research
  • EXERCISE! Part 1 Your client is a grocery store. They want you to do some research and make recommendations about how they can provide a better online grocery shopping experience for their customers. You have unlimited time & budget for your research. What research activities would you suggest?
  • design research toolkit Qualitative Stakeholder Interviews Co-design/Participatory Design Subject Matter Expert (SME) Interviews Group/Social Research Competitive Reviews Longitudinal Research - diary study Literature Reviews -twitter - flickr Depth Interviews (Customer&User) Focus Groups Direct Observation (Ethnography) Quantitative Contextual Inquiry Surveys Usability Testing Remote Testing Tools Snap Interviews Stats/Analytics
  • squeeze to fit START: design the research project youd love to do if time/money/resources were no barrier THEN: work out what is achievable. Be creative!
  • ways to squeeze - fewer participants - fewer activities - shorter sessions - less proximate to context (use artifacts) - use technology (phone, web video, twitter) - less complex research activities - more readily accessible participants Even the smallest amount of data beats none. (yes, Im quoting Jakob again - Guesses vs Data as the basis for Design Recommendations)
  • lets take a break!
  • part 2: conducting design research
  • recruitment
  • who to recruit? persona hypotheses Think about: - the different user roles - factors most likely to affect behaviour Dont over complicate it!
  • how many? as few as possible. if given the choice to more research studies with few participants. why? - diminishing returns - speed to action (design)
  • (yes, Im quoting Jakob again - Why you only need to test with 5 users) In earlier research, Tom Landauer and I [Jakob Nielsen] showed that the number of usability problems found in a usability test with n users is: N(1-(1-L)n) where N is the total number of usability problems in the design and L is the proportion of usability problems discovered while testing a single user. The typical value of L is 31%, averaged across a large number of projects we studied. Plotting the curve for L=31% gives the following result:
  • The most striking truth of the curve is that zero users give zero insights.
  • how to find them? DIY vs Using Professionals - how much time/money do you have? - how easily accessible are participants? is using friends/family network really bad?
  • Incentives. Pay them.
  • CAUTION: researching young people & kiddies
  • logistics - where to research - timing your research - factoring in no shows (& floaters) - consent forms (privacy, their rights & incentive acknowledgement)
  • discussion guides -writing a discussion guide
  • discussion guide > define your research questions > start as wide as possible, narrow slowly > keep it contextual, not speculative > show, dont tell (observation = good) (show me how you do that?) > uncover mental models (if you clicked there, what do you think would happen?) > ask OPEN questions (ask questions to get them talking NOT yes/no answers) > take care not to lead (you can have leading questions AND leading structures) > dont outsource design to your participant! (remember, youre the designer!)
  • EXERCISE! Part 2a write a discussion guide for a depth interview for your grocery store client (who wants to design a better online grocery shopping experience)
  • interview technique getting the most from your research participants (quite possibly the most important part!)
  • capturing data
  • what to capture on sticky notes > *anything* interesting/relevant said in the course of your interview, in as close to direct quotes as possible. > your design ideas > questions for the future > capturing on the fly is a *real* skill. I still live transcribe to a text file then extract affinity notes from the transcription.
  • interview technique introductions & getting started - introduce yourself (and any colleagues) - what are we doing here? - what time will we finish - forms & incentives - ask permission to record
  • interview technique its not a test! - allay their nerves - distance yourself from the design - we only care about *their* opinion, not people they know or most people - theres no right answer or smart answer - their opinion counts - will really help shape the design of the product/service
  • interview technique building rapport *everyone* has something that makes them either very interesting or passionate. find it. talk about it. the investment in building rapport is repaid by the quality/quantity of insight given.
  • interview technique - Active Listening - nodding, smiling & paraphrasing - Focus - dont let yourself get distracted - Look for physical clues - additional information, and do they match the words? - Dont Rush - take time to get your thoughts together & prepare your next question - Keep it open - Who, What Where, When, Why, How and my favourite Tell me about... - Follow the flow - dont stick to your script, mix up the order if it flows better for that participant.
  • interview technique Have a great closing question. Some of my favourites are: - Do you know someone you might recommend this to? Who/Why - How would you rate it out of 10 - What would you tell the designers Try to summarise the parting sentiment (notes that it is not more or less important than the initial sentiment)
  • interview technique say thank you. always remember the participant is HELPING YOU. be appreciative.
  • if youre feeling nervous, remember... research participants are like dangerous animals... theyre usually just as scared of you as you are of them.
  • EXERCISE! Part 2b An interview! in pairs, take turns to conduct a 10 minute interview using your discussion guide from the previous exercise
  • part 3: analysing design research
  • rule of thumb: allow at least a day of analysis for each day of research
  • start with single case analysis (the story of each participant)
  • then move to multiple case analysis (trends in the data) eg. affinity sorting
  • a mind map can be a digital affinity sort
  • collaborative affinity sorting? Ive had great results with this but only if participants have observed the research
  • using research data in design: audience modelling
  • using research data in design: audience modelling
  • using research data in design: experience strategy & design principles
  • using research data in design: audience modelling Today Im pissed HI at British Gas Im passionate about Education Proximity am I experiencing once my billing the more I learn it right now? problem is fixed, the more I care Im fine. LOW HI Commitment how much will I care next month?
  • Keith I just want to know enough to buy well Keith is planning to pop the question soon - in about a weeks time The engagement ring will be his first big jewellery purchase. He knows virtually nothing about diamonds or jewellery. He doesnt want to become and expert, he just wants to know enough to buy well and wants to feel reassured using research data in that hes getting what hes paying for. He has a general idea of his girlfriends preferred style but is not really confident about choosing the right design. Some of his mates have been engaged recently and models: personas hes asked them a few questions about the process. He popped into Goldsmiths last week to tentatively start investigating his purchase 32yrs and spent most of the time telling assistants he was just looking - he left quite Jnr Mgr, Lloyds TSB quickly, not liking the pressure of the store experience. He doesnt know (but wants Income approx 30K p.. to) what makes one ring so much more expensive than another. investment emotion Purchase Lifecycle STAGE ONE - RADAR STAGE TWO - INTENSIVE RESEARCH STAGE THREE - MAKE PURCHASE novice expert knows that a potential actively seeking information to find and purchase the ring purchase is on the cards, inform purchase (qualities of has heightened awareness diamond and metal, price etc.) the right ring at the right for self for other price from a company he can of information that crosses Gaining enough knowledge to buy his path but not actively well. trust. need it quickly willing to wait seeking information. 10 days to weeks in advance approx. 1 week in advance of weeks/months in advance. in store, google for information proposal 100 2000 possible sources: social networks, media/content
  • Recommended Reading: Rapid About Face 3 Designing for Contextual Cooper, the Digital Age Design Reinman Kim Goodwin Holzblatt, & Cronin Wendell & Wood
  • thank you :) Leisa Reichelt [email protected] @leisa