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Towards corporate usability maturity

  2. 2. INTRO…  A framework for determining your organisational maturity Neilsen 2006  Goal is to become a User Driven Organisation – User data helps determines projects that are funded – User research helps determines company direction – Experience design extended beyond IxD into Customer Experience
  3. 3. STAGES OF MATURITY  Stage 1: Hostility toward UX. This stage can last decades.  Stage 2: Developer-centred UX. Two to three years.  Stage 3: Skunkworks UX. Two to three years.  Stage 4: Dedicated UX budget. Two to three years.  Stage 5: Managed UX. Six to seven years.  Stage 6: A Systematic UX process. Six to seven years.  Stage 7: Integrated user-centred design. Insufficient data.  Stage 8: User-driven corporation.
  4. 4. STAGE 1: HOSTILITY TOWARD UX  In this mindset, humans are irrelevant—they're told to use the system, regardless of whether doing so is easy or pleasant.  Throwback to early days of computing where hardware costs etc meant it made sense to subjugate people to computers needs.  Hard to change behaviour.  Timescale: This stage can last decades.
  5. 5. STAGE 2: DEVELOPER-CENTRED UX  Team relies on its own intuition about what constitutes good UX  Works ok if mental model matches audience – i.e. developing tools such as IDE’s etc  For every other case this is a bad idea  We know too much about the problem space  BUT executives generally responsive to the idea of UX  Logic, flattery, persuasion, analytics  Timescale: Two to three years.
  6. 6. STAGE 3: SKUNKWORKS UX.  No official recognition of UX, nor is there an approved budget  Organization realises need to be customer focused  Guerrilla testing prevalent  Activities are ad hoc and driven by UX advocates  Primitive but effective skunkwork techniques employed  Rely on results to progress: analytics, AB test, survey  To prevent being overlooked, save the initial design ideas, clumsy as they may seem, and show before/after comparisons to document the UX advances.  Timescale: Two to three years.
  7. 7. STAGE 4: DEDICATED UX BUDGET  Someone higher up makes the UX aspects of product quality a higher priority.  A dedicated budget for UX allows UX activities to be planned  There are dedicated UX staff  Main UX method is User Testing (but usually happens late in process)  A budget to recruit participants  The team spends most of its time fixing individual design mistakes, and no time at increasing organisational maturity.  To move to next stage: Collect ammunition, higher conversion rates, fewer calls to call centre, increasedproductivty - involve senior stakeholders in sessions  Timescale: Two to three years.
  8. 8. STAGE 5: MANAGED UX.  Official UX group, led by Manager  Studies are conducted more consistently as the UX group refines its methodology  The group archives and compiles the findings of UX reports.  The company has a person whose job it is to think about UX across the organization, in order to increase organisational maturity and leverage existing UX staff for more strategic purposes  To move to next stage: Use budget on high profile projects aim for spectacular wins, evangelise, participatory design, involve senior stakeholders in sessions  Timescale: Six to seven years
  9. 9. STAGE 6: A SYSTEMATIC UX PROCESS.  The company has recognized the need for an actual user-centred design process, with multiple activities and milestones  Iterative design is more common because the company realizes that the best UI quality requires several rounds of UX  Projects are prioritized according to the business value of their user experience.  Even projects that don't get a lot of UX resources go through at least some form of UX review before they're approved for release  The UX budget large enough that key projects receive sufficient resources  The company starts doing field studies  To move to the next stage  Use participatory & iterative design to bring stakeholders on the journey.  Lobby for Field Studies  Timescale: Six to seven years
  10. 10. STAGE 7: INTEGRATED USER-CENTRED DESIGN.  Field studies, as a form of very early user research is in the DNA.  Each step in the development process is infused with user data, including the project definition and the requirements phase.  Beyond simply estimating user experience quality, the company tracks quality through quantitative UX metrics.  Each project has defined UX goals that these measurements must surpass for the design to be greenlighted for release.  The company begins to employ UX data to determine what it should build.
  11. 11. STAGE 8: USER-DRIVEN CORPORATION.  User data now determines the type of projects that are funded.  User research determines the company’s overall direction and priorities. The concept of total user experience is extended beyond the screen to other customer-company interaction.  The company uses the same UX methods, but these now affect corporate strategy & activities beyond interaction design.  Corporate decision-making takes a mixed methody approach including data from behavioural observation of real users—data about what customers do.
  12. 12. CONCLUSION  The timing obviously differs among organizations  Start-ups are lucky and can begin the maturity process at stage 3 or stage 4  Steps must be addressed in order, hard to skip a stage  Too many simultaneous changes are likely to result in failure  Find the best ‘buttons’ in your organisation to press and keep punching them.