Lean Up Your Act: How to Tackle Lean and Win at Design

https://designforuse.net/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/just-the-ux-process-large.jpg

Jul 7
0

It's 2014, and that means big changes - not just for Elon Musk, but for small UX consulting firms too! To shake things up a bit, Design For Use has recently overhauled our process from a longish-term Waterfall methodology to the very sexy newish Lean design and testing approach. After attending numerous UX conferences and networking meetups, we were inspired by the iterative and revelatory nature of Agile and Lean methodologies - and, of course, the major perk: less time spent on creating those beautiful deliverables. Armed with guidance from books like Lean UX...

Off the Beaten Path: The Compassionate Moderator

Jun 24
0

We've heard - and experienced - a lot of discussion about the technology hurdles of remote testing: picking the best testing tool, getting participants to download screensharing tools, dealing with proprietary software that participants don't have access to...Tech issues run the gamut. But we hear considerably less about the interpersonal challenges of running a remote usability session. It’s not just about finding the right tool or getting your participant to download Webex; it’s about maintaining your participant’s motivation and engagement by showing (gasp!) empathy and compassion during a remote session....

Skinning Cats: A New Take on Old UX Research

Jun 24
0

They say there's more than one way to skin a cat - and that's true of UX research as much as anything else. Especially if the "cat" is everything you need to know in order to design a uniquely user-centered experience.   The Fat Cat: Taking Your Time and Getting All the Milk Our traditional approach to user research has been honed and refined over several years to tease out the major needs, goals, and behaviors of end users, as well as to gain a broad and deep understanding of...

“Great Designers Steal”: Free Tools to Improve Your Designs

Mar 14
0

Picasso is purported to have remarked, "Good artists borrow, but great artists steal." He probably did not mean it in a literal sense. He wanted to inspire us from great works of arts and re-interpret or re-imagine them in a different way. Here are some references that have inspired us to become better designers.   1. Balsamiq: Its simple, sketchy interface evokes a sense of nostalgia of our playing with crayons as children. The clients don't get distracted by little details, allowing us to focus on important things such as navigation, content prioritization, quantity of...

From the Ground Up: UX Lessons from Startups

Mar 14
0

User experience, or UX, dictates the strength of the connection between your product and your user—both from a functional standpoint, by how easily the user can accomplish a task, and from an emotional standpoint, which is a sum total of experience during and after using the product. It goes way beyond just the aesthetics, though that is an important part. It’s really about how well the user’s expectations and objectives are met and fulfilled. Sometimes, unexpected delights become even more important to create a loyal base of customers. Therefore, a...

Incentives: Ensuring the Kindness of Strangers

Jan 7
0

A lot of things can go wrong during a usability test. You might forget to bring that Ethernet cable, lose your Internet connection, or even leave behind the testing protocol and be forced to fly blind. Potential problems abound. Preparation is vital. But…none of that matters if your participant just doesn’t show up at all.   No-Show Time One of the most frustrating—not to mention time-consuming and financially burdensome—components of usability testing is the no-show. People forget; people have other priorities; people have emergencies. It’s to be expected, even accepted. Most usability professionals make...

The Remote Possibilities Are Endless: Part Two

Jan 7
1

Summary: After research into moderated and automated remote testing, Design For Use is ready to move forward with remote synchronous evaluations. We'd love to hear about your experiences and best practices with respect to moderated remote testing. Methods Now that we've looked at remote testing versus lab testing, we can delve deeper into remote testing for a more comprehensive analysis. There are two methods of remote usability testing—synchronous (moderated) and asynchronous (automated)—each with its own benefits and drawbacks. The major difference between the two methods lies in whether there is temporal division...

Pushing the Boundaries of Remote Card Sorting

Jan 7
0

An Age Old Problem DFU recently engaged in a project with a client to develop a new sitemap, focusing specifically on restructuring the global navigation and labeling conventions. The challenge for this project was the large volume of content: thousands of pages spanning various directories and subdirectories. The crux of the project was to conduct an open card sort remotely to determine the user’s mental model for the best labels and content groupings on the site. We’ve conducted dozens of card sorts over the years with OptimalSort, our trusted online application for...

Social Media For Everyone(Even Our Friends in the Public Sector)

Jun 24
0

Does Social Media Work for Retirement Systems? In the past few years, "social media" has gone from a buzz-word known by few, to a communication tool used by many. Facebook and Twitter dominate as channels for timely and effective communication for hundreds of millions of users across the globe. These individuals represent various industries, interests, hobbies, organizational affiliations and other relationships. While most of us see the value of social media in our personal lives and have embraced it, leveraging social media for our organizations and companies is less prevalent,...

South by South West Interactive Highlights

Jan 7
0

The South by South West interactive conference hit Austin on March 11 with a wave of nearly 15,000 interactive professionals (not to mention the 13,000 music and 9,000 film badge-holding attendees). Although the interactive portion of the conference was the largest in its 12 year history, many attendees lamented that the large number of participants compromised the quality of panels and presentations. Conceivably, in order to meet the needs of 15,000 conference-goers, the number of panels had to be increased from years past, which some believe lead to...