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Get Your Train On:
Building Your UX Team Through
    Practical Usability Testing
       GSA First Fridays Usability Program
                 Jonathan Rubin
                 Angela Hooker

                 October 2012
Hi!
 Jonathan Rubin
@jonathan_rubin

 Angela Hooker
 @AccessForAll




                  2
(Photograph of a desert)




                           3
Usability tests
       +
  Usability
 education
      =
More trained
  UX staff!
                  4
In this 30 minutes
1. What is First Fridays?
2. How to create an educational
   program
3. Stories from “graduates”

                                  5
1. What is First Fridays?




                            6
 Education
 Demonstration Tests
 Awareness



                        7
Best: Two rooms to test




 Observation room   Testing room

                                   8
First Fridays “discount” testing
8:30 – 11:30 AM = 3 testers, 1 hour




                                      9
First Fridays “discount” testing
8:30 – 11:30 AM = 3 testers, 1 hour
11:30 – Noon = Lunch and accessibility




                                     10
First Fridays “discount” testing
8:30 – 11:30 AM = 3 testers, 1 hour
11:30 – Noon = Lunch and accessibility
Noon – 12:45 PM = Collect problems




                                     11
First Fridays “discount” testing
8:30 – 11:30 AM = 3 testers, 1 hour
11:30 – Noon = Lunch and accessibility
Noon – 12:45 PM = Collect problems
12:45 – 1:30 PM = Offer solutions



                                     12
First Fridays “discount” testing
8:30 – 11:30 AM = 3 testers, 1 hour
11:30 – Noon = Lunch and accessibility
Noon – 12:45 PM = Collect problems
12:45 – 1:30 PM = Offer solutions
1:30 PM = Adjourn


                                     13
First Fridays “discount” testing
   DOT             State
   Interior        FCC
   IRS             USAJobs
   Army            Census
   NASA            NSF
   OMB             And 35 others

                                     14
Free @ HowTo.gov/firstfridays
 Usability testing    Project
  scripts               management
 Email templates      Before and after
 Best practices        screenshots
 Final report         Videos
  examples             Etc.

                                       15
Hallway test




               16
Teach ‘em to fish …




                      17
In this 30 minutes
1. What is First Fridays?
2. How to create an educational
   program


                                  18
Behind the curtain




                     19
Team sport




             20
Each test is
a training
opportunity


               21
Matrixed approach to staffing
 Part-time
  volunteers!
 Borrow from other
  departments
 You are “providing
  skill building
  opportunities”
 Flexible needs: 1
  -20 hours a month
                                22
Many roles to choose from
•   Observe
•   Room Manager
•   Greeter
•   Data Collector
•   Backup




                                23
Grow your
own facilitator


                  24
Get it: Rocket Surgery Made Easy
  Commit to monthly
   product testing
  Same time each
   month
  More observers +
   more testing =
   more buy-in

                               25
4-step process




                 26
Make a big deal




                  27
Make a syllabus for trainees
1. Summary




                                28
Make a syllabus for trainees
1. Summary
2. Cost + duration




                                29
Make a syllabus for trainees
1. Summary
2. Cost + duration
3. Program goals



                                30
Make a syllabus for trainees
1.    Summary
2.    Cost + duration
3.    Program goals
4.    Schedule and timeline


                                    31
Make a syllabus for trainees
1.    Summary
2.    Cost + duration
3.    Program goals
4.    Schedule and timeline
5.    Optional reading
                                    32
Manage it




            33
In this 30 minutes
1. What is First Fridays?
2. How to create an educational
   program
3. Stories from “graduates”

                                  34
Graduate 1: internal
              David Kaufmann
              Federal Information
                Specialist
              david.kaufmann@gsa.gov




                                  35
Graduate 1: internal
• Needed UX work




                       36
Graduate 1: internal
• Needed UX work
• Four months training with us




                                 37
Graduate 1: internal
• Needed UX work
• Four months training with us
• Comparison test – 2 designs, 30
  users




                                    38
Graduate 1: internal
• Needed UX work
• Four months training with us
• Comparison test – 2 designs, 30
  users
• Informed content of 100s of pages



                                      39
Graduate 1: internal
• Needed UX work
• Four months training with us
• Comparison test – 2 designs, 30
  users
• Informed content of 100s of pages
• Speaks publicly about usability


                                      40
Graduate 1: internal
• Needed UX work
• Four months training with us
• Comparison test – 2 designs, 30
  users
• Informed content of 100s of pages
• Speaks publicly about usability
• Tests on Call Center
                                      41
Graduate 2: external
 Couldn’t persuade agency to test, so
  volunteered




                                         42
Graduate 2: external
 Couldn’t persuade agency to test, so
  volunteered
 Four months training with us




                                     43
Graduate 2: external
 Couldn’t persuade agency to test, so
  volunteered
 Four months training with us
 Made 8 personas (tested 4)




                                     44
Graduate 2: external
 Couldn’t persuade agency to test, so
  volunteered
 Four months training with us
 Made 8 personas (tested 4)
 UX test and marketed it



                                     45
In conclusion …
 You can do it




                  46
In conclusion …
 You can do it
 No cost – and money saving



                               47
In conclusion …
 You can do it
 No cost – and money saving
 Employee multiplier


                               48
Thanks!
Jonathan Rubin
@jonathan_rubin
jonathan.rubin@gsa.gov

Angela Hooker
@AccessForAll
angela.hooker@gsa.gov

                         49

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Get Your Train On: Building Your UX Team Through Practical Usability Testing

Editor's Notes

  1. Problem – want to test sites but not enough staff or resources
  2. Solution: combine testing and education and get more volunteers!
  3. How to get some usability momentum at your agency
  4. We’re part of the Office of Citizen Services and Innovative Technologies at the US General Services Administration (GSA) We handle innovative programs like prizes and challenges, sharing public data sets, digital content education, and lots more
  5. Educate our clients who want to improve their sites Demonstration tests and invite people to see it Awareness – generate awareness for our training program, and see facilitators in practice
  6. We use two rooms to test – our test participant room and our observation room where we get to see what’s going on in the test Provides a lot of insight into how people use the site You don’t need a lab – just a couple of conference rooms work find. Go low tech!
  7. Our style in a nutshell – 3 testers an hour each Why 3 people and not 30? Research has shown that testing with 3-5 people can find up to 70% of usability problems, which gives you a lot of bang for your buck
  8. Lunch – provide if you can; otherwise, have people bring back. Start on time; keep momentum going . Accessibility demonstration during lunch (we demonstrate how people would use assistive technologies on the site/project, and point out where they can improve accessibility for all users).
  9. Go around the room and collect 2-3 problems per person. Or have them submit before they leave Important to have lots of people there – they become big evangelizers for you
  10. Work with parties who are there to determine solutions that they can implement in 30 days
  11. Done – people agree so they have marching orders. Send stakeholders the problems and solutions that day. Send a short report and accessibility feedback 2-3 days later.
  12. Here’s who we’ve helped – over 52 agencies Saved them tons of feedback, headaches, and complaints
  13. We post templates, best practices, roles and responsibilities, checklists, and much more on our website
  14. Hallway test – more users, informal, public space. Very successful – army.mil test Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pC0ODg2MpuE
  15. First Fridays teaches other agencies how to test So they don’t need to go out and pay to have this done – do it for themselves NOW! Makes sense for agencies to test (fish) for themselves Saved $1.3 million to date BY TEACHING and demoing
  16. You have had the monopoly on user experience – you are the go-to person. People come to you for information; now, you are going to share your secrets. Don't want people to steal your thunder; it’s a competitive field and town. No one wants to make it look like that anyone can do their job, but if you believe in discount usability testing – that a smart person can learn to do a basic test in months and not years
  17. Usability is now a team sport - relying on others to help you, or creating their teams and sending them off Guiding others says lots about how capable you are, what a great practitioner you are, and work collaboratively with other teams
  18. First Fridays approach to staffing – one full time employee; all others borrowed
  19. Best possible research – they can conduct a test, represent your program, spread the education, fix more sites
  20. The bible of do-it-yourself testing Met someone at UX mixer; she bought the book; did tests; people thought she was a genius
  21. Training manual for facilitators: pass out materials, give to bosses, etc.
  22. Colleague had too much to test – we didn’t have time for all requests
  23. Went through our training program – various roles, observing, feedback
  24. Big test – hallway test, two types of content, timed tests, 30 users
  25. He found the best content was written in plain language or used short subheads Became the new standard for all their content Extremely useful results – plain Language, style
  26. Knows enough to talk about it
  27. Will be applying it to non-web based products
  28. Wasn’t comfortable with us posting their report online Didn’t want results to be public
  29. He went back to his agency and tried to set up a set Took a lot of convincing, but he got approval to make personas and test them
  30. Test was a big success, had middle managers to witness it and chime in Marketing the results heavily via email, newsletter, monthly reports Convinced people a lot about value of UX – voice of customer being important and how it could save money