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Understanding Invisible Labour

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Slides for talk on "Understanding Invisible Labour" given by Gareth Edwards on 12 July 2018 at the IWMW 2018 event.

See http://iwmw.org/iwmw2018/talks/understanding-invisible-labour/

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Understanding Invisible Labour

  1. 1. 1 I N V I S I B L E L A B O U R G A R E T H E D W A R D S U n i v e r s i t y o f G r e e n w i c h
  2. 2. 2 VISIBLE LABOUR INVISIBLE LABOUR T h e t a s k s y o u d o to a c c o m p l i s h y o u r d a i l y ( o r p r o j e c t ) w o r k T h e h i d d e n m i c r o - t a s k s y o u d o to h e l p y o u r u s e r s c o m p l e te t h e i r w o r k @garius #iwmw18 #P3
  3. 3. 3 Adding a banner image T h i s i s t h e s t a n d a r d , u n i v e r s i t y - w i d e p r o c e s s f o r u p l o a d i n g a n e w i m a g e to t h e w e b s i te a n d a t t a c h i n g i t to t h e to p o f a p a g e o r a r t i c l e . ONE: UPLOAD Use the Web Hub to upload your image onto the website TWO: NOTE ID Copy (or note down) the ID of the image you uploaded THREE: BROWSE Find the page you want to use the image on and choose to edit FOUR: ADD IT Add the ID you copied (or noted) into the ‘thumbnail’ field FIVE: PUBLISH Go to the details page and choose to publish your changes @garius #iwmw18 #P3
  4. 4. 4 Adding a banner image ( Wi t h i n v i s i b l e l a b o u r ) ONE: UPLOAD Use the Web Hub to upload your image onto the website TWO: NOTE ID Copy (or note down) the ID of the image you uploaded QUERY IMAGE Webteam asked for feedback on picture quality and relevance RESIZE IMAGE Send image to webteam for resizing as too big UPLOAD FAILED Webteam troubleshoot why image did not upload @garius #iwmw18 #P3
  5. 5. 5 Adding a banner image (cont.) ( Wi t h i n v i s i b l e l a b o u r ) CAN’T SEEM TO EDIT The edit link doesn’t seem to work. Ask webteam for help THREE: BROWSE Find the page you want to use the image on and choose to edit FOUR: ADD IT Add the ID you copied (or noted) into the ‘thumbnail’ field FIVE: PUBLISH Go to the details page and choose to publish your changes IMAGE ISN’T SHOWING Ring Webteam and ask them why it is not showing @garius #iwmw18 #P3
  6. 6. 6 Self-created micro-tasks S o m e m i c r o - t a s k s a r e t h e r e s u l t o f y o u r o w n b a d h a b i t s @garius #iwmw18 #P3 @FreelanceWars
  7. 7. 7 “When's the last time you had three or four hours to yourself to get work done? It probably wasn't at the office.” J a s o n F r i e d , 3 7 s i g n a l s @garius #iwmw18 #P3
  8. 8. 8 THE IMPACT OF INVISIBLE MICRO-TASKS T A S K S W I T C H I N G M i c r o - t a s k s d i s r u p t t h e w o r k p a t te r n a n d o f te n f o r c e ( o r m a ke a te a m m e m b e r i n i t i a te ) a t a s k s w i tc h . A l l d a t a f r o m : M a r y Cz e r w i n s k i E r i c H o r v i t z S u s a n Wi l h i te ( 2 0 1 3 ) 50 Average number of tasks interrupted for another one, 
 per day TASK SWITCHES 266% Time-to-complete (TTC) for a returned-to task over an uninterrupted one TTC (INTERRUPTED) 31% Time spent answering the phone or email, per day TIME ON COMMS 40% Number of switches that were initiated by the team member themselves. SELF-MADE SWITCHES @garius #iwmw18 #P3
  9. 9. 9 Understanding micro-tasks I N V I S I B L E L A B O U R I n v i s i b l e m i c r o - t a s k s e x i s t i n p r a c t i c a l l y e v e r y te a m , s y s te m o r p r o c e s s . T h e i m p o r t a n t t h i n g i s h o w te a m s t r e a t a n d d e a l w i t h t h e m . It’s rare that the initiator is trying to be disruptive M I C R O - T A S K S A R E N O T I N H E R E N T LY B A D The first step to addressing them is to drive them out into the open M I C R O - T A S K S N E E D T O B E A C K N O W L E D G E D Often they exist because of fixable problems within our systems or processes M I C R O - T A S K S C A N B E E N G I N E E R E D O U T @garius #iwmw18 #P3
  10. 10. T H E M A S S E F F E C T Websites are spaceships. The bigger they are, the harder to turn.
  11. 11. 11 THE MASS EFFECT Entrepreneurial activities differ substantially depending on the type of organization and creativity. Entrepreneurial activities differ substantially depending on the type of organization and creativity. Entrepreneurial activities differMicro -tasks that exist because the website is overly large, the codebase too complex or a wide range of admin systems exist “That section is set up differently to the other ones” “This page looks weird since you made those other changes” “Can anyone remember who coded this?” “Oh that page is in the old style. We have to change it for you” @garius #iwmw18 #P3
  12. 12. 12 MANAGING MASS EFFECT I N V I S I B L E L A B O U R D e a l i n g w i t h M a s s E f f e c t r e q u i r e s te a m s to b e s t r i c te r i n h o w t h e y s c o p e a n d c o d e s y s te m s CONSISTENTLY B U I L D Don’t create custom interfaces or sections of your website unless you really have to. This ensures user skills are transferable COMPLEXITY B L O C K Don’t build complex layouts or systems just because the user likes them or feels they can cope. Stick to the basics unless its unavoidable STANDARDS M A I N T A I N Use industry standard techniques and languages. Ensure that anyone on the team can code something, or at least navigate the code base SEMANTIC B E Structure you content and code semantically. This helps people think the right way, and helps keep things simple and easy to update or improve @garius #iwmw18 #P3
  13. 13. F E A R O F T H E U N K N O W N Some users won’t jump. They need a gentle push.
  14. 14. 14 FEAR OF THE UNKNOWN Entrepreneurial activities differ substantially depending on the type of organization and creativity. Entrepreneurial activities differ substantially depending on the type of organization and creativity. Entrepreneurial activities differMicro -tasks that exist because the user is reluctant to make a decision or unwilling to take an action “I don’t think I’ve been trained on this” “It just needs doing as my manager says it’s really urgent” “Can you just stay on the phone while I do it?” “I would try, but it doesn’t seem to want to let me log in” @garius #iwmw18 #P3
  15. 15. 15 MANAGING FEAR ITSELF I N V I S I B L E L A B O U R D e a l i n g w i t h Fe a r o f t h e U n k n o w n r e q u i r e s a n u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f h o w p e o p l e t h i n k a n d t h e p s y c h o l o g y o f f a i l u r e a n d p r o c r a s t i n a t i o n . TUTORIALS M A K E You don’t have to document everything, but you do need to provide easy guides for the things people actually struggle with. SKILLS D E M A N D Set a baseline level of computer ability you expect your users to have before they can be granted access to your systems. PHONES R O T A T E Some users will latch on to the people they see as helpful. Make it harder for them to get attached. NO S A Y There are very few things that genuinely require an urgent intervention. Make failure have a cost for the user so they are motivated to change. @garius #iwmw18 #P3
  16. 16. 16 L E E R O Y J E N K I N S ! That button you told people not to click yet? He’s clicking it.
  17. 17. 17 “ O k a y g u y s … t h e s e e g g s h a v e g i v e n u s a l o t o f t r o u b l e i n t h e p a s t … ” “ W h a t d o y o u t h i n k A b d u l , c a n y o u g i v e u s a n u m b e r c r u n c h r e a l q u i c k ? ” “ I ’ m c o m i n g u p w i t h 3 2 . 3 3 , r e p e a t i n g o f c o u r s e , p e r c e n t a g e o f s u r v i v a l … ” “…alright chums let’s do this! LEEEEROY JENKINS!!!” “ O h m y G o d . H e j u s t r a n i n . ” @garius #iwmw18 #P3
  18. 18. 18 Everybody died @garius #iwmw18 #P3
  19. 19. 19 LEEROY JENKINS! Entrepreneurial activities differ substantially depending on the type of organization and creativity. Entrepreneurial activities differ substantially depending on the type of organization and creativity. Entrepreneurial activities differMicro -tasks that exist because the user has done something they shouldn’t have done “Um. Something weird has happened” “I thought I’d try it myself and…” “The person who set this up isn’t here anymore” “We’ve hired a graduate intern” @garius #iwmw18 #P3
  20. 20. 20 MANAGING THE LEEROYS I N V I S I B L E L A B O U R D e a l i n g w i t h L e e r o y s m e a n s a c c e p t i n g t h a t ‘ b i g r e d b u t to n s ’ a r e j u s t to o te m p t i n g f o r s o m e PERMISSIONS D E F I N E Make sure that your permission structure correctly blocks things you don’t want people to do SIMPLICITY E N F O R C E ‘We can look at that in future, but only after you’ve done the basics first’ EXPERTS B E Expertise in a different subject, or an outside interest in digital media, does not make one an expert. Be firm but clear 
 about this. EVERYTHING H I D E Most CMS systems are a hotbed of features that are designed to look good in the showroom but are rarely used. Hide them all! @garius #iwmw18 #P3
  21. 21. @garius #iwmw18 #P3 { display : none }
  22. 22. 22 Quick wins I N V I S I B L E L A B O U R G e t t i n g b e t te r a t h a n d l i n g m i c r o - t a s k s d o e s n ’ t h a v e to s t a r t w i t h b i g c h a n g e s . A f e w c u l t u r a l c h a n g e s c a n g o a l o n g w a y. Build a team culture that acknowledges the need for concentration time I T I S O K AY T O S AY ‘ N O T N O W ’ If a person cannot use a computer then there is a training issue, not a digital one I T I S O K AY T O R E M O V E A C C E S S If someone insists on complexity, make them prove it is necessary I T I S O K AY T O S AY ‘ P R O V E I T ’ @garius #iwmw18 #P3
  23. 23. 23 @garius twitch.tv/garius GARETH EDWARDS U N I V E R S I T Y O F G R E E N W I C H

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