Research Studies

 

Background

I’ve always been passionate about understanding people’s REAL lives through research. Understanding the context of our customers/users - their needs, their aspirations, their struggles and their desires - is what truly inspires great design and places products and services into a meaningful relationship with the people who experience them. Below is a sampling of several research studies I’ve conducted over the years.

 

Higher Ed Instructor Needs - Full Report

Time: January 2016 - May 2017

Background

When I first started at McGraw Hill, I was asked to get an understanding of the overall needs for international higher ed instructors and students in 5 different countries. Being a team of one, I decided to teach the international product teams how to do qualitative research and analysis.

Process

  1. Traveled to each region and taught them contextual inquiry and modeling methods in during a one week workshop.

  2. During the first afternoon, research was completed. I went along and conducted contextual inquiries myself.

  3. During days 2-4, I taught the teams how to create models and then built those models with them. Models built were identity, customer journey, Influence model and an affinity of key insights.

  4. Once models and data was collected from all 6 regions, I consolidated the insights into one master spreadsheet and then created new models that were global. I worked with teammates on this but was a hands-on contributor.

  5. The new models were placed into the final report which was created by a visual designer on my team. I presented the final report with international executive leadership, product leadership, and then the full organization.

 

 
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Customer Journey Research - Full Map

Time: August 2014 - October 2014

Background

As a team of one at Modernizing Medicine , I was given full responsibility for the customer and user experience of our flagship product, a cloud-based EMR. Since the current customer experience was not fully understood by the organization, I conducted a research project to map it out and identify key pain points we were struggling with internally.

Process

  1. I conducted a contextual inquiry with 5 to 6 employees from each department - sales, marketing, product, customer service, customer accounts, etc - and asked them to walk me through their day to day jobs. I also asked them about things that worked well and things that didn’t.

  2. I consolidated each team members workflow into one process and then began linking the processes into one customer journey map.

  3. I created an affinity model from insights and collapsed them into the executive level insights on the journey map.

  4. I shared the journey map with executive leadership and each departmental leadership where we discussed action plans for internal process concerns.

  5. I created a customer research plan for identified problem points in the journey and subsequently conducted that research to better understand what was happening.

 

Health Information Seeking - Full Map

Time: January 2007 - April 2007

Background

I was asked to redesign MayoClinic.com, a health information website for the Mayo Clinic. To start that process, I worked hands-on with a small research team to first understand how the patients were currently utilizing our site and then to understand how the overall behavior and needs of health information seeking for patients.

Process

  1. I started by looking at google analytics of the current site to understand what content was popular via page visits and duration on the page. I also reviewed click-through paths to understand how the customers were navigating the site.

  2. I next conducted 20 usability tests where we asked patients to perform task on the site. As part of that process, I asked interview questions to better understand what they were needing from the site and how they had expected to use it.

  3. Following the usability tests, we asked 20 patients to conduct a journaling exercise where they documented every occurrence where they needed health information.

  4. From those studies, I was able to map the diagnosis part of the journey as seen in the deliverable. (Note, this map was “refreshed” by another designer from a visual design perspective, but the data and information is the same.

  5. I created a customer research plan for identified problem points in the journey and subsequently conducted that research to better understand what was happening.