An interview with the Product UX Research team on the practicalities of running research.
UserZoom’s Co-CEO and Co-founder, Alfonso de la Nuez, sat down with the Product UX Research team – Rose Leitner and Becky Wright – to interview them on their process, including the practicalities of running research using the very platform they’re trying to improve, the benefits of working collaboratively and the research methods they’re using.
This is part one of three videos, we’ll publish the next installments over the next couple of weeks, and you’ll find a transcript of this video below.
ALFONSO: Today we’re talking about drinking our own champagne. I’m extremely, extremely excited about this video. You know, I really believe that it’s important to run research on your own product. And in this case we run research, a lot of research, as we’re about to talk about in UserZoom’s product. Using, of course, the UserZoom platform. And so I’ve got our two UXRs… Product UXRs, here with me and I’d like to ask you guys about how we do it. First what we do and second how we do it.
ROSE: We’ve been ramping up this kind of research over time, more and more. Becky and I joined fairly recently, beginning of the year. And since then we’ve created a really great flow and process to get just more and more rapid research out. We started out doing things like entire reports and you know, a big long PowerPoint, those kind of things. And we realized that’s just not Agile enough for the amount of research and development we want to do. And we are embedded in the product team, which is just amazing to me. That’s just, you know, every researcher wants to be embedded in product and understand the roadmap and be there for the planning.
But yeah, we start from either research-led or PM-led, or designer-led requested research and we go from there. And we are constantly iteratively testing.
ALFONSO: Awesome. The thing is, product in our team includes product managers, includes designers, includes the researchers and we’re all working very collaboratively, even though we’re in totally different locations. So it’s a remote team and we’re making it happen, and it’s working better than ever before.
ROSE: And actually what I was going to say, is that coming here to work with you guys at UserZoom and forming this great team. It’s just been really amazing because, you know, in the traditional lab, research is very difficult to recruit users and we all know that struggle as researchers. Recruit the right users and recruit them in time and be a part of the Agile process while doing that.
So UserZoom is great because we’ve done I think somewhere over 34 studies just between the two of us, since the beginning of the year. And then that’s just been amazing, coming from doing mostly lab work to this is… the amount of rapid iterative testing you can do is really great. Along with the more formative research.
ALFONSO: Let’s talk about that. Let’s talk a little bit more about the type of research we do. Formative, summative, which we’ve talked about before in other videos.
BECKY: First of all, what allows us to do both types of research is because we do have this buy-in from the entire company and especially the designers themselves want us involved. We’ve been doing very early discovery work. Talking to our customers, finding out what their needs are.
And really kind of, deep-diving into exactly what we need to be doing to help them do their own research, what their expectations and needs are.
And then, of course, we go across the whole life-cycle and we’re doing more tactical research, when our designers have things that they want us to test, prototypes, and running quick tests to make sure that we’re on the right track. And as you said, through to UX benchmarking what the current experience is and making sure that things on the live in the platform now are still meeting expectations or where we can find areas to continually improve.