The UIE Podcast
Summary: The Next Generation of Podcasts from UIE. Stay tuned for new stories and take-aways you can use in your day to day design work.
Sometimes, the world of user experience design requires creative solutions. There are numerous methodologies and an even greater number of myths about where and when they are supposed to be used. Lean UX is one such process that is associated mostly with startups and very early stage projects. But what if you were to apply Lean UX to an existing site? And what if that site was a multinational industry-leader with millions of users? In this episode of the UIE Podcast, Austin Knight, Senior UX Designer at Hubspot, discusses how the Hubspot team employed Lean UX to tackle their website’s redesign. Jeff Gothelf, the co-authour of Lean UX and Sense & Respond, joins us to offer his insights on Austin’s efforts.
Much like superstition, something that is believed to be an important metric may not apply to the reality of your product or service’s experience. Understanding the behavior of your users, introducing some science, is what leads to greater context and insight. In this episode of the UIE Podcast, Chris Callaghan of McCann UK talks about his experience of joining a team and seeing the superstition first hand: A roomful of folks attempting to derive meaning from numbers, but having the same conversations over and over. Straying from superstition and introducing science started with the simple question: “do we know if anyone outside of this room can use this?” Kate Rutter joins us to help dispel some of the myths surrounding analytics and offers insight on how to come to true meaning.
If we keep adding functionality, we start to clutter our enterprise application’s design. That clutter can create a substantial burden on the user while obscuring the functionality we want them to use. In this episode of the UIE Podcast, Amanda Linden talks about her challenge of fighting back clutter in Asana’s design. Hagan Rivers talks about her techniques for helping enterprise app teams deal with the issue of clutter.
Corporate life expects us to be experts, to know the answer to every question. We make “requirements”, which turn out to really be assumptions, but because we never call them assumptions, we never go about testing them. This is as much a social political issue as anything. The higher you are in the organization, the more you’re expected to just know the answer. In this episode, Jared and Richard Banfield explore the role of design sprints in cultivating an environment where it is ok to say “I don’t know”. Allowing yourself to admit this, and allowing your teammates to as well, leads to greater collaboration as you explore the answers together.
Storytelling is a powerful way to measure our understanding of our users and their experiences. But unfortunately, we don't always get the story right. User experience rests more on listening to what the users want to tell us rather than the stories research teams and designers tell themselves within the confines of their organizations. Perhaps it’s time to first try story listening before recanting the tales. In this episode, we hear a story from Mike Monteiro about design going wrong. Jared Spool then talks to Marc Rettig about how the team could employ a technique, the Collective Story Harvest, to take apart the problem and come to new insights. All by listening to a story.
When your user gets value from your design, they’ll likely make using it into a habit. They’ll keep coming back, forming more habits as they continue to get results. When we add new features, we often force them to break the habits they’ve carefully formed. That’s what makes our users upset when we change the design unexpectedly. Their old habits no longer deliver the value they once did, and now they have to form new ones. In this episode, Jared learns from Amy Jo Kim how game designers approach the problem of introducing new levels, weapons, and other features. Amy Jo shows how the way game designers think can be easily applied to your designs.
There’s a saying that you can’t know where you are going unless you know where you come from. Designing navigation for enterprise applications is a journey unto itself. One that UX Immersion speaker, Hagan Rivers is quite familiar with. In this podcast, listen as Jared Spool discusses the importance of clear navigation systems in enterprise applications with special guest Hagan Rivers. They explore techniques for tackling complex navigation, how screen codes are perfect for those with in-depth experience, and how a balance with ease-of-learning is critical. When you’re sitting face to face with the wilderness that is an enterprise application, a map and compass would serve you well. Unless you’re a tracker, know which side moss grows on a tree, or can follow the stars, you’re likely not going to be able to navigate through on your own, much less find shortcuts and become proficient.
Enterprise applications are massive, often unwieldy pieces of software. You get a sense they were never truly improved or updated, they just had a continuous string of features tacked on until it got to the point where they are almost impossible to use. And they’re old. This focus on features let design fall to the wayside, making it less important than the application’s perceived capabilities. Now, you’re forced to stare at a screen straight out of 1995. You’ve become a time traveler, whether you were aware of it or not. We’ve come across other time travelers in our journey. You aren’t alone. One such person is Hagan Rivers, who has worked tirelessly to bring these enterprise applications into modern time, if not the future. In this podcast, listen to Jared Spool weave a tale of time travel with special guests Hagan Rivers and Dana Chisnell.