As UX professionals, we have a great many analytical and descriptive tools available to us. In fact, there are so many that it can sometimes be difficult to decide which tool is most appropriate for a given task! Hierarchical task analysis (HTA) is an underused approach in user experience, but one you can easily apply when either modifying an existing design or creating a new design.
This technique has applications across a range of different problem domains, including time-and-motion studies, personnel selection, or training, and provides a broad and deep understanding of task performance. While there are core principles that guide a hierarchical task analysis, it’s possible to adapt the basic approach in a huge number of ways to support the needs of any domain under consideration. In this column, I’ll examine one approach to hierarchical task analysis that enables UX designers to quickly understand both what a system does and how its capabilities translate into the system’s user experience. You can also use this approach to support the UX development process. Read More
Until recently, I never saw the value in customer journey maps. In fact, throughout my career, I’ve even struggled with the value of personas and scenarios. Many times, stakeholders would just skim over them after our presentations or use them only to prove we were making progress on a project. Design teams, with the best intentions, made every effort to keep personas alive and breathing, only to succumb to other project pressures that demanded annotation, use cases, and itemized requirements.
So why have I written an article on the value of customer journey maps? How did I manage to reach the conclusion that customer journey maps are not only a worthy and effective tool, but also a crucial element on large, enterprise user experience (UX) projects? Because I saw them have a significant impact on a recent project with The Boeing Company, and I’m now a believer.
In this article, I’ll attempt to illustrate the virtues of customer journey maps, the necessary ingredients that make them an intelligent deliverable that encourages conversation and collaboration, and the role they can play in effecting real change in large organizations. Read More
In a prior article I wrote for UXmatters, “Presenting UX Research Findings Using the Jobs to Be Done Framework,” I discussed the benefits of using the Jobs to Be Done (JTBD) framework when sharing findings from generative UX research. The article described how the organizational components and the corresponding artifacts of the JTBD method—that is, the Jobs Atlas—empower stakeholders to develop an empathetic understanding of users and help UX researchers make granular, tactical decisions. In the article, I posited that these methods and artifacts offer a better way of providing usable research findings to stakeholders than other methods of disseminating the results of deep-dive, generative, user research—particularly personas.
This last point has inspired some feedback from colleagues and other UX professionals who are already comfortable with creating personas and prickled at the suggestion that JTBD can provide the advantages of these structures with fewer of their inherent weaknesses. As a result, I decided to write this article, which provides a detailed discussion that focuses primarily on the advantages that the JTBD perspective affords over personas. Read More