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UoE - 'Let the guerrilla loose'


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UoE - 'Let the guerrilla loose'

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A look into the value and practical use of Guerrilla Research when time and budget are an issue for your project.
Delivered internally for the University of Edinburgh.

A look into the value and practical use of Guerrilla Research when time and budget are an issue for your project.
Delivered internally for the University of Edinburgh.


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UoE - 'Let the guerrilla loose'

  1. 1. LET THE GUERRILLA LOOSE Marty Dunlop
  2. 2. INTRODUCTION UX Consultant IS website program Principal Consultant XP | Consultants Interaction Designer
  3. 3. INTRODUCTION • Building a strategy toward a user centered service • Creating a new product or service All work has included the need for user research and all have not had the time and/or budget
  4. 4. Guerrilla “Referring to actions or activities performed in an impromptu way, often without authorization”
  5. 5. Guerrilla research “A proactive measure to take, embedded with your target user base, without a timesheet.”
  6. 6. What is required?
  7. 7. Permission?
  8. 8. Permission?
  9. 9. A script?
  10. 10. A script?
  11. 11. Planning?
  12. 12. Planning?
  13. 13. Funding?
  14. 14. Funding?
  15. 15. Funding?Permission? Planning?A script?
  16. 16. Funding?Permission? Planning?A script? Passion
  17. 17. Funding?Permission? Planning?A script? Passion Time is merely a seasoning
  18. 18. The (De)evolution of research
  19. 19. THE (DE)EVOLUTION OF RESEARCH Originally Well planned out, scientific experiments with in depth briefings Step back Well planned out sessions, inviting a big group to a workshop or (bored)room sessions Result Proactive, in the moment, information gathering.
  20. 20. THE (DE)EVOLUTION OF RESEARCH Time Assumptions
  21. 21. THE (DE)EVOLUTION OF RESEARCH Time Assumptions Guerrilla zone
  22. 22. Guerrilla activities
  23. 23. GUERRILLA ACTIVITIES From the seat Reviewing analytics information (ex Google) Quick, concise surveys (ex Typeform, Fivesecondtest) Phone interviews From the feet Get out in the middle of your target user group and talk Email individuals (if known) and go for a coffee Organise a meetup, post on social media (targeted) and offer refreshments for a couple hour event
  24. 24. Different levels
  25. 25. DIFFERENT LEVELS CAPUCHIN Just walk around the office/client space and recruit people for ‘5 minute’ session Email colleagues a simple question or an image/doc to review very quickly Post to social media (if possible) with a poll for options/specified thoughts
  26. 26. DIFFERENT LEVELS CHIMP Get out there in the middle of your target user group with a notebook, pen and an endearingly cheerful face Contact pre established community groups and ask to visit/join them (ex shared interest groups, study groups)
  27. 27. DIFFERENT LEVELS SILVERBACK Organise a meetup style event. The venue should be within the target user group domain. Email out to pre existing channels. Approach users by visiting their environment (ex Students at the student café or quad)
  28. 28. When
  29. 29. WHEN Therapy When you’ve had enough of your project team for one day Necessity As soon as you’re told there’s no time or budget for research. It will only get more difficult to conduct research Quick validation When you just need that wee bit of validation for a single element
  30. 30. Value
  31. 31. VALUE User morale 9/10 the users you approach want to give their thoughts and are surprised that they are considered. User centered The rank of the project ACTUALLY being user centered goes up by +1. Skeptic withdrawal Those that proclaimed there was no time or budget, or that didn’t see the benefit, now do and are ecstatic. (sale by proof) Evidence You’ve been able to provide answers where there was questions and you’ve validated assumptions.
  32. 32. Examples from experience
  33. 33. EXAMPLES FROM EXPERIENCE Scot Gov Creating digital services for important public services.
  34. 34. EXAMPLES FROM EXPERIENCE Scot Gov Creating digital services for important public services. UoE Creating engagement channels and understanding the student digital experience.
  35. 35. Lessons learned
  36. 36. LESSONS LEARNED Just one day Even with a busy schedule as we all have, putting just one day down in the diary for a week or two later, means that you can dedicate focus to just sourcing and talking to the user base. Be human Everyone is human, forget your professional stance to a certain degree and just be curious and strike up conversations. People are more open than you think, especially when you’re not selling something or trying to tell them what to think.
  37. 37. Tips
  38. 38. TIPS Take as many photos as possible With the users consent, this can be invaluable when recording the environment and interactions. (a consent form is all that is needed) Choose to be overt or covert There are two ways; Go out there with a clipboard and a sign saying you’re doing research and you’ll generally get quantitative input. Go out and just strike up conversations, really engross in that interaction with people, and you’ll get qualitative.
  39. 39. “If you Google something it usually comes up” “We use MyEd every day. I actually don’t think it’s that easy to use, I think…” Molly Finley, England UG Physics Hayley, USA UG CAHSS Genna, England UG Graphic design “I think the emails were helpful but I think the timing for us was…” Hannah, USA PG International dev Alexa, USA PG International dev “Finding accommodation was difficult, that needs to be fixed.” Ana Andrea Claudia
  40. 40. References to take away Guerrilla Research material ‘Get Guerrilla with it’ (Article) ‘Doing pop up research’ (Article) ‘How to impact your project with guerrilla user research techniques’ (Video)
  41. 41. For more information on UX and User Research methods: Neil Allison - IS Website program/UX Service

Editor's Notes

  • One foundational point of Guerrilla research is that it doesn’t necessarily need to be sanctioned, the insight you gain after all doesn’t have to be overly personal or confidential.
  • As long as you have one or two questions in mind and you have an idea of where to find relevant users, you don’t need an exhaustive script to follow. You just want that little bit of factual insight.
  • If you have an hour you can spare to venture out to your users environment and interact with just a couple of people, a thorough plan isn’t vital.
  • Talking to someone is free, if you yourself can spare the time and openly approach people to interact with for just a few minutes, there is next to no cost.
  • The only thing that is vital here, is the passion or the desire to go out there and talk with users to gather some valuable insight. If you are interested in talking to people in order to gain their perspective on something, 9 times out of 10 they will sense that and be open to a quick chat.
  • Time is the only boundary that can create any kind of issue, but only if the investment is going to be more than a few minutes. Otherwise it is a considerably small restriction.
  • Research has changed over the years, in that it has become more restricted in terms of time and commitment.
    From very scientific and well planned out sessions, we have come to a point where it is hard enough to gain sign off for a small hour long session with just a few attendees.
    This has led toward a movement of being more proactive, finding whatever time you can and having just the minimum number of attendees come along to an impromptu session,
  • Research has long been the method of reducing assumptions in order to gain 100% facts, with a major investment of time in order to do so.
  • Conducting guerrilla research, with its limited factor of time will still leave a certain level of assumption in the air, but far less than not having completed any research at all.
    That ‘Guerrilla zone’ harnesses a great amount of value of its own.
  • Half way...?
  • The more you know, the better everything will be.

    It’s like fight or flight, you’ve been told you can’t have 100% so go out and get 1%.

    Ensuring that one small element does exactly what it needs to as it impacts the greater experience.
  • Usual scenario. There was buy in to conduct research but time became a factor for the client.

    Stretched unicorn resource. UX designer has to design UI, document all wireframes and concepts, direct front end development, then organise and conduct user research.

    Research was split between half a day on project and then purely own time.

    Research participants were sourced locally and adhoc. Children of team members who were students and taxi drivers whilst taking a taxi as normal.
  • Intention for UoE welcome week.

    Onboarding experience.

    General student experience of services so far.

  • Overt:
    Be a beacon in a high traffic area to gain a high number of interactions.
    Be specific about those you interact with and afford more time for detailed conversation.
  • The more time you give to your interactions, the more detail you’ll get and the better the insight into that persons life.