UX Digital One-Stop-Shop
My Roles: UX Designer / Developer, UX Research and Design Lead, Content Manager, UX Training and Development Lead, Product Owner (I wore many hats depending on the various needs over time)
Skills Applied: Interaction Design, UI Design, HTML5 / CSS / Responsive, Rapid Prototyping, Visual Design, Training, Communications, Marketing, Competitive Analysis, Usability Testing, Cognitive Walkthroughs, Surveying, Interviewing, Data Analysis, Information Architecture
The UX One-stop-shop is a cross-organizational digital presence designed and developed to: (1) connect employees with a variety of UX resources and services including: design standards and guidelines, reusable assets, research results, UX process and methodology best practices, tools, training / coaching material for agile development teams, etc. (2) promote UX team marketing, direct contact points and next steps (3) highlight success stories showcasing examples of UX in action.
Centralize good work, that was once in many places.
Working in a small, but mighty centralized team of UX researchers and designers involved in various key products and initiatives, my group had created a lot of good work over time. However, for many years the fruits of our labors resided in many different places or wasn’t published at all. As we broadened our scope and research / design deliverables, we needed to not only share our outputs with one another, but serve as a hub for an entire enterprise community benefiting from our resources and services.
As a result, I lead an initiative to design and develop an online hub to showcase and share my team’s work online. Originally I utilized wiki capability, then over time I moved to an enterprise social media and content management platform. Most recently, I launched a website which enabled increased customizability and an enhanced user experience.
Multiple Methods and Roles within an Iterative Process
Depending on my role and the stage of the initiative, I utilized various methods and skills throughout the process. Initially I defined the strategy, designed the structure, and selected the initial tool for the effort. From there, I focused on content development and creation as much of the materials were directly applicable to a hand-picked cohort of colleagues engaged in a user-centered design apprenticeship program I simultaneously led. Next, I influenced management of the need for additional support and hired / managed a contractor to assist in the initial release. As I acquired more collateral over time, I then lead and then coached several research initiatives (e.g., cognitive walkthroughs, usability test sessions, and interviews) to gather feedback from our users and gauge their needs. Later, as a product owner, I additionally received and prioritized feedback from our users and my colleagues via various real-time mechanisms (i.e., conversations, emails, design reviews, and blog submissions).
Over time, all of the research consistently reported the need for a customized website to truly satisfy our end users goals and usage models. Adapting to meet the demand, I applied front-end coding development skills (HTML 5, CSS, Bootstrap 4) over several agile sprints with incremental design iterations, to create and deploy a new and improved digital presence.
Opportunities and Improvement Areas
Over the course of the initiative, there were many improvement opportunities. For years research revealed that users continued to have a hard time finding things with the out-of-the box enterprise wiki and social / content management platforms. The flexibility of a website enabled a cohesive information architecture with the ability for users to quickly and easily locate the information they were looking for.
Along similar lines, feedback revealed that users were pleased that all UX content was readily available in one location. However, over time we learned that we were presenting too much content, and so I collaborated with my user experience colleagues to ensure we showcased the information most important to users. I also made strides to more clearly articulate our team’s services and resources, with direct contact points and next steps.
Web-Analytics for Continuous Improvement
By moving to a website, web-analytics capabilities became available, enabling metrics such as page views, average page time, and bounce rates to provide data about usage patterns and ensure the most meaningful content is available to our end users and stakeholders.
UX Tools, Services and Resources in One Place
The design and development of a cross-organizational UX one-stop-shop led to the achievement of multiple results. By providing and integrated web presence we were able to connect stakeholders and partners with enterprise-level UX tools, services and resources. The roll-out of the most recent web presence, promoted a clear and consistent navigation and information architecture, increasing users’ ability to find relevant content quickly, leading to less meetings and email requests as users could discover UX services and resources on their own. An updated look-and-feel provided enhanced visual design and consistency with current enterprise design standards and guidelines and served as a template for other organizations to follow. The addition of web analytics enabled us with additional data points to observe usage patterns and pivot content accordingly. Most important the website generated a great amount of excitement and pride by the enterprise UX team as we marketed success stories of UX in action.