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The UX Landscape 2015

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My short talk at the UXPA Cleveland's World Usability Day Conference, November 2015

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The UX Landscape 2015

  1. 1. THE UX LANDSCAPE Cleveland UXPA World Usability Day 2015 1
  2. 2. Me I’ve built small and large UX teams. Co-founded the DFW UXPA chapter in 2002. UXPA International Board, President 2008-2009. Teach at Kent State’s UXD program. Provide user experience research and design consulting.
  3. 3. I’m Going To Do All This In 15 Minutes… The UX Landscape The Continuing Challenge (Part Of) The Solution
  4. 4. The UX Landscape
  5. 5. Everything Is Awesome! Source: UXPA 2014 International Salary Survey Median User Experience Practitioner Salary 2005 - 2014
  6. 6. 71K Jobs on LinkedIn! Source: LinkedIn search about 3 hours ago J
  7. 7. So why do we still struggle for relevance?
  8. 8. It’s About Organizational Alignment At many companies, various groups and departments are not aligned around creating the best user experience possible. Sound familiar?
  9. 9. Time for a story.
  10. 10. At a former company, product management asked my UX team to conduct field research with small businesses. We identified an opportunity for an accounting product that served new value dimensions. That’s awesome! Woo!
  11. 11. Product management began writing up a business case. We created personas and goals. And mocked up workflows and views. We started testing the mockups…
  12. 12. Product management began writing up a business case. We created personas and goals. And mocked up workflows and views. We started testing the mockups… And senior management promptly went batshit crazy.
  13. 13. What went wrong? Org Culture New products “just weren’t done here.” Growth by acquisition. Executives had no incentives to create new products. In fact they had strong disincentives.
  14. 14. What went wrong? Org Culture New products “just weren’t done here.” Growth by acquisition. Executives had no incentives to create new products. In fact they had strong disincentives. Institutional The organization had very few people who had ever worked on new products. There was no institutional memory or process.
  15. 15. What went wrong? Org Culture New products “just weren’t done here.” Growth by acquisition. Executives had no incentives to create new products. In fact they had strong disincentives. Institutional The organization had very few people who had ever worked on new products. There was no institutional memory or process. PM & UX Mistakes We had the data, but we failed to communicate the pressing need effectively. We failed to build awareness and alignment.
  16. 16. Once we started showing the prototype, it was perceived as insubordinate and threatening.
  17. 17. We got shut down within a couple weeks of the first prototype tests.
  18. 18. But organizational cultures can be changed! So I tried.
  19. 19. Executives like process. They really like repeatable processes. So we – UX and Product - created a business process for new product innovation. It included: Field research (not just surveys) to discover new value dimensions. Rapid prototyping and design iteration. Cross-disciplinary involvement: product, design, development. And a whole lot more. The Intervention
  20. 20. Rapid contextual innovation – “RCI” The “3-3-1” process 3 people 3 weeks 1 viable opportunity We Even Had A Fancy Name…
  21. 21. We even made a bad-ass process map…
  22. 22. Prototyping and iteration based on customer feedback became part of: Initial value discovery New product development Business strategy UX UX The Outcome
  23. 23. We moved UX up the value creation chain. We utilized our skills at the front end of the process… On an equal footing with product management and development. The Outcome
  24. 24. Our challenge as UX professionals…
  25. 25. We Need To Get Strategic We need to lead, communicate, and advocate.
  26. 26. So how do you “do” strategic UX?
  27. 27. Strategy “A long term plan of action designed to achieve a particular goal.” “Strategy is differentiated from tactics or immediate actions by its orientation on affecting future, not immediate conditions.” <Lazy>http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Strategy</>
  28. 28. Strategy vs. Tactics
  29. 29. Strategy vs. Tactics Strategic plan: Go from airport to hotel Tactics: Accelerate Make some turns Slow down Stop
  30. 30. Tactics are good techniques… but only if you know where you’re going. Do you?
  31. 31. Guess what? You have a new job: change agent. UX UX
  32. 32. Change Agent A person who leads a business initiative by: Defining and researching the problem Planning the intervention Building business support for the intervention Enlisting others to help drive change Six Sigma - http://Isixsigma.com/dictionary/change-agent/ UXmatters - The User Experience Practitioner As Change Agent – http://bit.ly/a2Xwux
  33. 33. UX Practitioner As Change Agent To be a change agent, you must focus on strategic goals. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t strive for short-term wins. But they should be in the service of a long-term strategy. UX
  34. 34. Research and design is only half of your job! The other half is leading your organization to more fully incorporate UX practices.
  35. 35. Develop a UX plan that aligns with your organization’s business goals. Advocate for the plan, get executive buy-in. Then rack up some tactical wins… And use this leverage to embed UX practices and process more deeply into your organization. Your Mission
  36. 36. Now go be a UX superhero. Thanks for your time.
  37. 37. More on UX and organizations: slideshare.net/paulsherman

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