Research findings over the long term

My rough and patchy notes from the Cross Government Research meet-up that happened on Tuesday 12 April 2016 at DVLA in Swansea.

Dave Ellender

Stop important stories from being forgotten

  • create a spreadsheet of user stories
  • give each story a star rating
  • star rating = how many times this problem was seen
  • use this rating to help prioritise backlog
  • product owners can really relate to the star rating
  • if design fixes don’t meet the user need, this method helps to push issues back to the top of the agenda

Example user story spreadsheet

ID Story Status Source Star Rating
Story number User story Fixed or not? Date & time *****

John Waterworth

Make research data traceable

  • create one folder per round
  • e.g. date - R12 - name of study
  • keep all materials in there
  • participant naming: R12-P3-name-of-file.jpg
  • prune video files (keep key recordings, delete everything else)
  • watch out for accidental deletion (especially when using shared folders on Google Drive or Dropbox)

Sharing and keeping findings

  • show and tell what you’ve learnt (this builds up a “corporate memory”)
  • show 5 to 10 findings per showcase
  • each slide should have: a heading, 3 points and an image
  • share the slides around afterwards
  • build up a library of slides overtime
  • helps you to understand and remember
  • create a summary slide at the end of each phase to round-up important findings

Share at every opportunity

  • blog posts
  • make a comic
  • make posters
  • create “big picture” journey maps
  • create things that stay after you’ve gone (this is tricky)

Vicky Teinaki

Documenting changes in agile teams

  • things get buried in confluence
  • create living documents
  • Google Drive FTW
  • spreadsheets don’t work too well
  • try Google presentations (these are visual, malleable, trackable)
  • in Google videos, you can link to timestamps
  • create a stack of successes as you go
  • use them for decision making
  • these will help bring new staff up to speed
  • it’s a hub, it doesn’t have to include everything
  • everything must be shareable

Tara Land

User needs

  • user needs should not become too granular
  • real user needs are stable (they don’t change much overtime)
  • they come from the lived experience of real people
  • read Indy Young’s Mental Models book

Further reading