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Demystifying User Experience

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A primer for understanding what user experience is, its benefit within an organization, and how to work with user experience practitioners.

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Demystifying User Experience

  1. 1. Demystifying UX NYU Stern Workshop FEBRUARY 28, 2017
  2. 2. A primer for understanding what UX is, its benefit within an organization and how to work with UX practitioners. PURPOSE OF TODAY’S WORKSHOP
  3. 3. Agenda 01 02 03 04 05 06 Introduction What is UX? UX Process Research & Testing Working with UXers Appendix: Frameworks & Reading List
  4. 4. Introductions
  5. 5. What Role Do You Want After Graduation?
  6. 6. 6 Christina Goldschmidt Christina has 20+ years of digital experience in a wide variety of industries, including financial services, insurance, legal, healthcare, advertising, media, technology start-ups and e-commerce. She has helped design innovative experiences and products and integrated lean and agile methodologies into the design process for an array of Fortune 500 Clients including MetLife, Wolters Kluwer, American Express, The Discovery Channel, Omnicom Media Group, and Morgan Stanley. She is a champion for the end-user and has expertise in interaction & visual design, user research and testing, data visualization and mobile- first experiences. Christina received her MBA from NYU Stern in 2008. DIREC TOR O F UX @ChristinaOnUX cgoldschmidt@cakeandarrow.come
  7. 7. We do customer experience. We’re a customer-experience agency who partners with insurance, finance, professional services and ecommerce companies. We’re leading global digital initiatives with MetLife, Saks Fifth Ave, Citi, Genpact, Lowes, KIND, The New York Times, among others. We use customer data to achieve results, focusing on driving profitable growth and creating digital experiences to get you closer to customers and allow for more self-service. We build stuff people love using. We start every project by studying the needs of every group of users who’ll be involved in the experience. Our research methodologies ensure we uncover actionable insights based on human behavior that are current and relevant. Those insights help us plan an accurate trajectory for a solution that achieves our clients’ business goals and leaves users feeling valued. Placing people at the heart of the process is how we deliver results. 7 WHO WE ARE WHAT W E DO
  8. 8. What is UX?
  9. 9. “User experience” encompasses all aspects of the end-user’s interaction with the company, its services, and its products. “ NEILSON NORMAN GROUP https://www.nngroup.com/articles/definition-user-experience/
  10. 10. Common mistakes for how people limit the definition of UX UI Design UX is the total experience and not just about the user interface, though the UI is a very important part other things like content are critical Usability Usability judges the quality of the UI and if it is efficient to use, easy to learn and delightful, though important it is only one aspect of good UX Digital UX refers to the total experience a user has with a company inclusive of digital. Customer Experience (CX) is emerging as a term to describe this, but it doesn’t speak to all users such as internal employees and vendors UX is Not Just…
  11. 11. The different elements of user experience design moving from concepts to the final manifestation of the end experience. Components of UX • User Needs & Site Objectives • Functional Specifications • Content Objectives • Information Architecture • Interaction Design • Interface Design • Navigation • Information Design • Visual Design
  12. 12. Google was launched on September 4, 1998 and revolutionized how users accessed sites on the internet though a focused and simplified experience Good UX at Work
  13. 13. UX Process
  14. 14. There is no one right process for UX. See the Appendix for more in-depth discussion about each approach. 3 Major Different Approaches Linear step-by-step process. Most standardized approach, but falling out of fashion. Agile is a process that responds to change. Design is split into sprints and this process is primarily used to coincide with development teams. WATERFALL LEAN UX AGILE UX Constant learning and iteration. Grown out of the lean start-up movement but now influencing process at enterprise companies.
  15. 15. Business Strategy Investigation Rapid Research & Insights Design Thinking Workshops Prototyping & User Testing Continued Prototype Development Ongoing Testing & Validation CONCEPTING BUILDING ITERATE UX Process – Emphasis on Speed & Innovation CHRISTINA’S HYBRID APPROACH:
  16. 16. Exploring the solution Combining lean UX, design thinking, service design, ethnography, data, rapid prototyping and testing, my approach empowers teams to quickly solve problems, ideate, validate the approach and build experiences that users love. Creating the final solution The iterative process of building an experience can take a waterfall or agile approach. Regardless of which works best for a particular development team, it's critical that the experience is validated by users every step of the way and that the team is comfortable adapting the experience accordingly. 16 CON C EPTING BUI L D I NG CHRISTINA’S HYBRID APPROACH: UX Process – Emphasis on Speed & Innovation
  17. 17. Company/Business Model Understand the business model, competitive advantage, current performance and goals employees are trying to achieve. Deep dives into marketing and operations are also beneficial. Industry Understand the landscape the company is operating in. What characterizes the industry and what trends are driving change. Substitutes How are users accomplishing similar goals now? What people, processes and technology can be leveraged for experience principles. Competitive What is happening in the over all digital landscape, both with direct competitors and also digital experiences that users interact with on a regular basis. Content What characterizes the content in this experience? What is currently blocking content from being as effective as it needs to be? Users What do users need? What are their key characteristics, motivations and goals and current frustrations and pain points? CON C EPTING Technology What is the right architecture? What technical limitations should be considered in designing the best experience? Brand What is the value proposition? How is the brand expressed in both visual identity and tone? Business Strategy Investigation 17 The goal is to have a high level understanding of the opportunity and agreement on competitive landscape and point of departure. All else will inform questions to be answered in research.
  18. 18. Rapid Research & Insights CON C EPTING 18 The best design is grounded in a deep understanding of users and sparked by research-generated insights. Ensure a thorough grounding in market segmentation and key targets. From there, determine how to identify them and uncover their mindset. What do users need?  What are their key characteristics, motivations and goals?  What are their current and anticipated frustrations and pain points? Conducting rapid research starts with optimal methods for reaching the target. Best results come from working with fast online recruiting start-ups and utilizing intercept methods to get in front of the target from the very beginning.  Other forms of recruiting can also prove effective, but these two approaches will typically decrease the cost of research and the time it takes to conduct it.   Additionally, wherever possible, contextual inquiry and ethnography inform a clear understanding of what people actually do, as opposed to relying on their memory. 
  19. 19. Design Thinking Workshops CON C EPTING 19 Affinity Mapping Moodboard Ideation & Collage Content Workshop Persona Roleplaying & Improv Sensory Ignition User Journey Sketching Feature Prioritization Design Studio WO RKSHO P O PTI O NS: Design thinking methods and workshops unlock the creativity within us all.  Bringing cross-functional team members together injects the ideation process with fresh perspectives and helps lift team members outside their everyday constraints. Moreover these activities can foster buy-in and build excitement across stakeholders. Body Storming
  20. 20. Prototyping & User Testing CON C EPTING 20 Thorough validation of the experience is critical to cementing the experience strategy.  Development of medium fidelity prototypes (comps or high fidelity wireframes in Invision) ensures maximum user input in the most efficient way.  While paper prototyping has its place, higher fidelity artifacts are able to better represent subtleties in interfaces.   The choice between remote and in-person testing and moderated and unmoderated testing will often be guided by timing, budget, geography and quantity of personas to be tested. It's highly desirable to test multiple options, wherever possible, as doing so generates valuable dialogue with the test subjects. It also helps prevent the design team from becoming too attached to just one idea.  Once validated, the final approach for an experience can be set.  The team can then proceed confidently into the iteration cycle for launch. 
  21. 21. Continued Prototype Development BUI L D I NG 21 The preferred approach leads with a low fidelity version of the entire experience, before refining the pieces. Starting with sketching and going into high fidelity wireframes or loose comps helps developers visualize the experience and contribute. Using the same tool across all phases of design increases speed and efficiency, and enables designers to seamlessly iterate on the same files. Tools like InVision Inspect can help eliminate ambiguity for developers.
  22. 22. Ongoing Testing & Validation BUI L D I NG 22 It is important to test interactions, copy and interface elements in advance of launch, since all individual elements together create the final experience and impact usability. Test design must ensure actionable results. Multiple quick rounds of testing can better enable incorporation of feedback and more efficiently lead to the optimal experience.
  23. 23. Rapid innovation and getting the most out of teams. Launching technically feasible products that are validated by users. PROCESS GOAL
  24. 24. Research & Testing
  25. 25. • Ensures you’re solving a problem that exists in peoples lives • Key to building a product that is tailored to its audience • Ensure that your product solution aligns to behaviors WHY CONDUCT USER RESEARCH?
  26. 26. Exercise: Generating User Insights
  27. 27. EXERCISE Watch the following videos. Jot down any content or features for KINDsnack.com inspired by these users’ needs and pain points
  28. 28. Energy Enthusiast Joe Clarissa Dyan Triathlons Rock & ice climbing Sea kayaking 7-day a week gym addict Hiking Group fitness instructor Personal trainer Holistic health coach What insights do you take away from these videos?
  29. 29. Did you catch any of these? Joe Clarissa Dyan Nutrition Info Flavor Profiles Usage Suggestions - Indulgence Flavor Samples Bulk Discount Orders or Subscriptions Filter by Sugar Content Suggestions for how to eat/use the product, different times and usages Free Shipping Exclusive Flavors Flexible Subscriptions for Travel Flavor profiles Super Detailed Photos of Products Store Locator Client Referral Program Student Education and comparison vs other products for health content
  30. 30. 56 RESULT: 
 KINDsnacks.com Redesign Assignment Increase sales, build a direct relationship with customers and turn them into enthusiasts. • Conducted interviews with employees to get an understanding of areas for improvement. • Observed different customer segments to understand their behavior and mindset. • Developed and validated a working prototype over three user testing sessions. • Launching March 2017.
  31. 31. User Research Methods QUALITATIVE Ethnography • Being there • Deep hanging out • Observation Pros: Most rich research method we have which allows for very deep insight into behavior Cons: Can sometimes be costly and timely QUANTITATIVE Surveys • Surveys allow for gathering quantifiable information from a large number of people • Most are completed online remotely Pros: Gather large numbers of quantitative responses very quickly Cons: Hard to get rich responses, or know why problems occur. Subject to many cognitive biases QUALITATIVE Interviews (Contextual: A+) • One-on-one discussions with end users • Focused on probing behaviors, thought patterns, and motivations Pros: Can gather rich, targeted information and are flexible for tangents Cons: Time consuming to organize, run and analyze. Subject to many cognitive biases
  32. 32. Ask Questions • Be wary of priming • Don’t ask leading questions • Don’t ask about intention, always probe behavior • Focus on specific instances Keep People Talking • “Tell me more about that” • “What do you mean by...” • “Help me understand better…” • Start with small talk • Embrace the silences as people will fill the space 32 RESE ARC H & TESTI NG How To Bad Question: “How many times do you plan to go to the gym?” Good Question: “How many times have you been to the gym in the last 3 months?”
  33. 33. Identifying Trends With Affinity Mapping Goal of affinity mapping is to extract common trends/themes: • Document one insight/observation per post-it • Group post-its by likeness • Reorganize as needed • Circle insights and name key concepts 33 RESE ARC H & TESTI NG Analyzing Results
  34. 34. 34 RESE ARC H & TESTI NG Analyzing Results Interpretation • People have no idea what they want • It’s your job to interpret what they say • What is said only accounts for a small piece of the actual research insights A GOOD USER RESEARCHER DOESN’ T ASK WHAT USERS WANT BUT PROBES BEHAVIOR AND MAKES CONCLUSIONS
  35. 35. 35 RESE ARC H & TESTI NG Personas – Research Output What is a Persona? • A summary that captures a subset your user base. Based on attributes, demographics, use cases and user needs • Created by conducting user research –not stereotypes– into archetypes • Does NOT represent a single person Why are Personas Important? • You are not your user. • Communication tool for what you know about your user. • Highlights pain points and opportunities to tailor your product to your user –builds empathy. • Keep your product focused (MVP). • Builds team consensus and leads to better decision making. • Useful for validating business strategy, requirements and initiatives.
  36. 36. 36 RESE ARC H & TESTI NG Personas – Research Output What Should It Include? Personas should not be based on a single person; rather, they are representative of groups of users. • At a minimum, each persona should include: • demographic information (age, occupation, etc.) • goals: what the user needs to accomplish • pain points: what is frustrating about their current experience • narrative: a paragraph or two explaining the user’s current experience How Do You Synthesize Your Data? • Look for trends (demographic, ethnographic, psychographic) • What do they want to do? • What are their characteristics? • Different behaviors correlated to characteristics? • Look at like types of users and see if there are other similarities.
  37. 37. “ MOTIVATIONS & GOALS Managing costs and financing is a full-time job. A documentary is an ever- evolving thing with unexpected events to capture. It's always a challenge to budget for unforeseen expenses like extra shooting days & re-shoots.” • Successfully manage funding so that I have flexibility to capture the key moments that make a great film • Travel is a part of my process. I need to be supported and prepared for any situation even when I’m away from home and out of the country • Each project is different. I want to understand the right amount of coverage for our level of risk for each and multiple projects • Documentaries are unpredictable, I want to manage safety even when I don’t know what’s going to happen KEY STRATEGIES • Keep up with his busy production and travel schedule by letting him access ProSight Online Backpack anytime and from anywhere • Teach him about his insurance coverage and what he really needs to be protected • Demonstrate ProSight’s knowledge of his industry and how they offer services uniquely tailored to his needs Persona Example Internet Use: 7 hours per day, often on mobile Business Knowledge: Low (2 years in business) Insurance Knowledge: Low FRUSTRATIONS & PAIN POINTS • I don’t understand the coverage I have, what I need and if I have enough • Most brokers don’t understand my business. I want an agent who understands what I do and my needs so that I get the right coverage • When I’m on a shoot and filming, I don’t have time to think about anything else Mark Lewis Documentary Film Producer, 42
  38. 38. • Face-to-face or remote • Simulate reality by testing in the environment/situation where the design solution would actually be used • Provide users with tasks to complete on a prototype (paper or digital) • Encourage them to talk out loud as they move through interactions • Observe their actions Usability Testing Methods STEP 1: Prepare • Write a test plan and script • Explain any recordings and get permission • Explain the purpose of the testing • Create task scenarios • Should describe the task in a clear and unambiguous way • Written in the user’s language (no jargon) • Don’t prompt the solution STEP 2: Facilitate the Test • Record the test • Observe behaviors • Act like a therapist • Keep them talking aloud STEP 3: Interpret Findings • Review and edit your notes as soon as you finish each interview • Aim to have 1 typed page of findings per participant • Perform an affinity diagram exercise to identify the biggest problems • Write a list of design recommendations to address the problems • When writing research notes, remember to: • Report on the good and the bad • Avoid making design changes (that will come later) • Stick to what you observed in the test STEP 4: Iterate • Review your finding and design recommendations • Iterate on the design by sketching and prototyping modified solutions • Test again! Bad Question: “Go to the search bar and type in where you want to go, then tap ‘go’.” Good Question: “Imagine you want to take a subway from your hotel in Times Square. What would you do?”
  39. 39. Working With UXers
  40. 40. The Right Way to Run a Design Critique • Introduce yourself as the facilitator • Outline what the key goals of the design were • Ask for what you want (eg. feedback on the high level flow, the details) • Ask for a ‘like’ and an ‘crit’ from each person • Discourage people from designing solutions in the meeting, instead give problems to solve. • Assign a note-taker to record the feedback and create a list of action items The Right Way to Give Feedback to a Designer • You are not critiquing art. This is not about what you like. • You are critiquing a business tool. Does this solve the business goals? • Focus on project goals and business needs, not subjective feelings • Be direct, specific, and provide reasons Bad feedback: “This is not working for me” “Make it pop more” Good Feedback: “The wording on this button does not feel positive, and we are trying to make people feel good about the brand” 40 WO RKI NG W I TH UX E RS Design Critiques
  41. 41. Experience Designer Defines a holistic vision of how users interact with products and/or services User Researcher Identifies user behaviors, goals and needs through interviews, studies and surveys Content Strategist How are users accomplishing similar goals now? What people, processes and technology can be leveraged for experience principles. Information Architect (IA) Defines the structure of a system, how content is described, organized and discovered Visual Designer Responsible for the planning, development, and management of content— written or in other media. Interaction Designer (IxD/UX Designer) Defines interactions, user flows, wireframes, and affordances of a system WO RKI NG W I TH UX E RS Usability Analyst Tests prototypes and working products with users and helps integrate feedback into future design iterations Common UX Roles 41
  42. 42. Appendix
  43. 43. Different types of frameworks you can use to answer UX questions during interviews. Frameworks • UX Case Study Evaluation • Heuristic Evaluation • UX Hierarchy of Needs • Usability Principles • UX Processes
  44. 44. Case Study Evaluation QUESTION 1 What user need does this address? Any UX problem needs to be grounded in user needs. Any evaluation of an experience should always start from the user’s perspective. QUESTION 2 What are we hoping to achieve by doing this? Understand the hypothesis for the solution. That will help design KPIs and a testing and validation methodology. Plus any solution needs to have a clear justification as to how it ties back to user needs or it can’t start to deliver on them. QUESTION 3 How will we measure success? Understanding how you’ll measure success is critical to proving that the design of your experience is the correct one. FRAME WO RKS
  45. 45. 45 FRAME WO RKS Heuristic Evaluations Jacob Nielsen • Visibility of system status: The system should always keep users informed about what is going on, through appropriate feedback within reasonable time. • Match between system and the real world: The system should speak the users' language, with words, phrases and concepts familiar to the user, rather than system-oriented terms. Follow real-world conventions, making information appear in a natural and logical order. • User control and freedom: Users often choose system functions by mistake and will need a clearly marked "emergency exit" to leave the unwanted state without having to go through an extended dialogue. Support undo and redo. • Consistency and standards: Users should not have to wonder whether different words, situations, or actions mean the same thing. Follow platform conventions. • Error prevention: Even better than good error messages is a careful design which prevents a problem from occurring in the first place. Either eliminate error-prone conditions or check for them and present users with a confirmation option before they commit to the action.  • Recognition rather than recall: Minimize the user's memory load by making objects, actions, and options visible. The user should not have to remember information from one part of the dialogue to another. Instructions for use of the system should be visible or easily retrievable whenever appropriate.  • Flexibility and efficiency of use: Accelerators -- unseen by the novice user -- may often speed up the interaction for the expert user such that the system can cater to both inexperienced and experienced users. Allow users to tailor frequent actions. • Aesthetic and minimalist design: Dialogues should not contain information which is irrelevant or rarely needed. Every extra unit of information in a dialogue competes with the relevant units of information and diminishes their relative visibility. • Help users recognize, diagnose, and recover from errors: Error messages should be expressed in plain language (no codes), precisely indicate the problem, and constructively suggest a solution. • Help and documentation: Even though it is better if the system can be used without documentation, it may be necessary to provide help and documentation. Any such information should be easy to search, focused on the user's task, list concrete steps to be carried out, and not be too large.
  46. 46. 46 FRAME WO RKS Heuristic Evaluations Conversion Heuristics The probability of Conversion (C) is dependent upon visitor Motivation (m), force of the Value Proposition (v), presence of Friction (f) & Anxiety (a) in the process, and Incentive (i) offsetting Friction that cannot be eliminated. C = 4M + 3V + 2(I-F) - 2A The Conversion Sequence Heuristic is not an equation to solve. Rather, it is a heuristic, or thought tool (i.e., really cool checklist), to use as you work on webpages and marketing collateral.
  47. 47. 47 FRAME WO RKS UX Hierarchy of Needs PHYSIOLOGICAL food, water, shelter, warmth SAFETY security, stability, no fear SOCIAL friends, family, love ESTEEM achievement, confidence SELF- ACTUALIZATION creativity fulfillment problem solving FUNCTIONAL it works RELIABLE it is available and accurate USABLE can be used without difficulty PLEASURABLE memorable experience MEANINGFUL personal significance MASLOW’SHIERARCHY OF NEEDS USER EXPERIENCEHIERARCHY OF NEEDS
  48. 48. Learnability How easy is it for users to accomplish basic tasks the first time they encounter the design? Error Handling How often are mistakes being made? Are error messages clear? How easily can the user recover from mistakes? Satisfaction How pleasant is it to use the design? Efficiency How quickly can users perform tasks after learning the design? Memorability When users return to the design after a period of not using it, how easily can they reestablish proficiency? FRAME WO RKS Usability Principles 48
  49. 49. FRAME WO RKS UX Processes 49 Waterfall • Discover: gather info, brainstorm, conduct competitive audit, define scope and create personas and user stories/use cases • Define: create the interaction model, content and functionality requirements, information architecture and project plan • Design: create site maps, user flows and the experience design (start with sketches and increase fidelity through wireframes, user interface designs and prototypes • Develop: provide clarity to devs to help create the final experience • Deliver: conduct usability testing, refine and prepare for deployment Lean UX Agile UX
  50. 50. Key books and sites to further your UX knowledge… in no particular order. Reading List Sites • https://www.smashingmagazine.com • https://alistapart.com • https://www.nngroup.com • http://blog.invisionapp.com • http://rosenfeldmedia.com/books/
  51. 51. Key books and sites to further your UX knowledge… in no particular order. Reading List Books • Smashing UX Design, by Jesmond Allen and James Chudley • Web Form Design, by Luke Wroblewski • Mobile First, by Luke Wroblewski • Don’t Make Me Think, by Steve Krug • The Design of Everyday Things, by Don Norman • 100 Things Every Designer Needs to Know About People, by Susan Weinschenk • Envisioning Information, by Edward R. Tufte • Lean UX, by Jeff Gothelf and Josh Seiden
  52. 52. Thank You.