How UX Research Plays in an Innovation Strategy World

February, 05 2020 | UX Strategy

     As the world continues to move faster and technology evolves quicker, consultancies and corporations are increasingly concentrating on their innovation strategies. As user researchers, designers, and leaders, we have a unique set of skills and methodologies that integrate well and provide a strong value add to strategy development. Researchers are well equipped to determine objectives, understand customers and competitors, define value propositions, assess capabilities, and establish systems and processes. In the earliest stages, while businesses are assessing their innovation strategy, there is a role for UX researchers to influence and assist in making proper strategic decisions.

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Preventing Worst-Case Scenario User Experiences

January, 31 2020 | UX Strategy

    In a world where our interactions with services, companies, and even other people are increasingly mediated by mobile apps, software, and services, unpleasant user experiences can leave people feeling unsettled and exposed. Those negative experiences affect not only people’s opinions of the products but often the reputation of the company itself, spreading swiftly through social media and word of mouth. Some of these issues have been addressed, some are ongoing, but it seems that all share the same root cause - failure during design and implementation to consider potential bad outcomes from using the product.

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Inclusivity and UXR Part 2: Reframing How We Think About Inclusive Design

December, 27 2019 | Design, UX Strategy, Markets, Multicultural UX

     
         When we think of inclusive design, search results tell the industry to associate inclusive design with product accessibility and users with disabilities or other impairments, but what if this type of thinking is what is truly limiting the impact and role of inclusive design in product development?

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The UX of Autonomous Vehicles

       The autonomous vehicle is more than just a blurred dream that is still off in the distant future; it’s already happening. Recently, the first self-driving taxi service has been launched in Singapore. It is predicted that it’s only a matter of a couple of years before fully automated driving vehicles will be available for purchase on the consumer’s market (Tesla is already taking incremental steps to make semi-autonomous driving vehicles available to the public). However, only a few companies like Google and Volvo have been testing fully automated driving cars on public roads. 

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Should Designers and Researchers Sign Their Own Hippocratic Oath?

November, 27 2019 | Research Methods, UX Strategy, Industries

     In this era, designers and researchers with all types of backgrounds are becoming strategic leaders and specialists in creating new products, businesses, and services. While these leaders from all walks are coming into positions of power in which we have breathtaking technological capabilities, should we not feel an obligation to do no harm? Healers agree to a Hippocratic oath- upholding them to maintain ethical standards in the work they do. Detrimental and questionable products and features have been created when power and feasibility can turn honest intentions into design decisions that alienate and do harm to the very people that the product was created to protect.

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Inclusivity and UXR Part 1: Revising Survey Screeners

   
     User experience seeks to be able to capture the accurate experience of the user, but it is critical to consider if we are truly being inclusive when it comes to including all users in that collective experience. Inclusivity in UX means helping to develop and/or improve products that can serve as many people as possible. It means that all users, including those with diverse characteristics, are all able to use the product and feel included in the collective user experience that is being captured surrounding a product. The reality is we are currently designing, studying and testing products that will be used by millions of people- and it is important to make sure that all potential users can feel included, and validated, in the shared user experience.

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Pre-Work for Usability Studies


       
In collaboration with Jasmin Joseph.

       The goal of a user research study is to better understand users behaviors, desires, needs, frustrations and attitudes through using varying feedback and observation based research methods. Therefore, it is critical that we as researchers are able to understand and capture the user experience to the best of our ability. This relies in the researchers ability to listen, as well as the participants ability to articulate themselves. Sometimes, participants may find it difficult to think of things in the moment, or know what to tell researchers. In these instances, it could be helpful for researchers to add an extra step of “pre-work” for the participants to help ensure that the research study is able to illustrate their experience in the most accurate way possible.  

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Three Questions to Ask Before Creating an Immersive Retail Experience

      As consumers, we expect our shopping experiences to be engaging and intuitive. More and more brands are going beyond traditional means of website and storefronts by opening temporary and permanent immersive retail experiences. What is an immersive retail experience? It is a highly instagrammable, interactive happening that is re-thinking traditional brick-and-mortar stores and taking over both the art and retail worlds alike. Some examples include Samsung 837, Sony Lost in Music, Ikea Play Cafe, Adias NDM, Visible’s InVisible, Dolby Soho...the list goes on and on. At their core, these immersive retail experiences are driven by good UX design. They attempt to connect with consumers by creating moments of empathy and personalization, immediately satisfying interactions and word-of-mouth marketing strategies. It may not be a website but all the same principles are applied.

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Participant Recruitment: What Not to Do


In collaboration with Jasmin Joseph.

         Recruitment, whether it be internal or external, is a necessary part of the research process. Part of being able to carry out an effective UX research study is being able to recruit participants who are right for the study, as well as making sure to recruit enough of them. There are several articles (including our own) that provide various different tips and tricks in order to try to help the recruitment process run more smoothly and efficiently. But what about what not to do when trying to recruit participants?

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Creating a Custom Material UI Theme Part 1: Customizing a Color Scheme

       The standard Material UI color palette is extensive – and for good reason. If you’ve ever built a website or a software application, you’ll quickly realize that you need more colors than you could ever imagine.

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