What doesn't bring you joy
should be automated
Photo by Rob Janssen
I work at a product company called Studyportals.
We help students to find education abroad.
Most of us studied abroad
and it was amazing!
We want to share that feeling with everyone.
In simple words we have a website.
It’s visited by almost 3 million users a month.
We have 6 teams
and we design & build lots of stuff
• Monthly tactical research
• Feature based tests
• Strategic long-term
We test a lot
Observers + no-shows
= loss of credibility
from the beginning
So you built
an awesome prototype
But how are you going
to test it?
Who are you going to invite?
Who likes to recruit users?
Please raise your hand
• Professional testers
• Available users
let's imagine you don't have unlimited resources for user research...
Why not agency?
Lower overhead cost
& pay to the user
Students as users
Our users are students, should be easy to recruit?
Well, easier than medical doctors for sure, but…
We struggled with it as long as
I can remember
32 students were recruited
in half a day
to the test
Remember I mentioned Summer?
How it worked
1. Get users
2. Send invites
3. Send reminders & hope for the best
And test more
If there are no shows
A lot of effort for unpredictable
No user background bias
Based on location
Easier to find
Closer to real environment
Day for experiments and learning every two weeks.
When we are not busy fitting dinosaurs inside of the slide we do
projects that make our life easier or more delightful
Automating parts of
At a glance
Email registered users
Previously recruited users
• Critical questions first (Save time for users)
• Consent form (Do not record personal data before consent)
• Personal details
• Contacts (phone number, Skype, email)
decreased no shows
based on personas
• Repeat technical requirements
• Repeat technical requirements
• Request confirmation via email
• Send reminders
User calls from
Don’t blame the user
Blame your unclear instructions
We noticed that people who do not
confirm their participation often do
not show up, that makes user
researchers sad. And we need
them to be happy.
Mobile remote & in-house
Desktop remote moderated
Connect all services to Airtable
Record users and log sessions
Share with the team
16 screener completions
10 students for the test
From the user perspective
Recruit more than you need
No-shows are expensive (pay more than participants’ hourly rate)
Experiment with research methods
Don’t forget about behavioral data
How are you doing it?
Ask me anything
My goal is to make you think creatively about the manual tasks you are performing.
If you challenge your behaviour and automate your workflow I will be very happy.
My name is Den, and barely anyone can pronounce my surname. Born in Ukraine, moved to the Netherlands 7 years ago.
I had a pleasure to work in a dynamic environments with a great teams as UX researcher, UX designer, Scrum Master, Product Owner. Last 3.5 years I’m leading UX design team at SP.
Website tests (mobile, desktop)
Observers & no-shows. Losing credibility
And do some visualisation
No, we don’t…
Is there problem to solve?
Could be even more, but we didn’t want to bother people indoors too much, because most of them were busy.
Problem / solution
Ask phone number
Please respond to this email to confirm your participation.
NN hourly rate of the user is not important. No-shows are more expensive