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Moving away from persona templates: 8 traps and tips to make your personas work

Sophie Schmidt
June 15 2018

Most UX people have a love-hate relationship with Personas – and for good reasons! They can easily become a checklist item that no-one puts to proper use. In this article we will guide you through the common pitfalls in persona creation and use, and provide you with ideas on how to effectively utilise personas for future projects.

Categories: User centred design,Tools & methods,User research

Peak Usability is now PeakXD

Tania Lang
February 06 2018

I am excited to announce Peak Usability has now been renamed PeakXD (short for Peak eXperience Design). Why?

When I started Peak Usability 15 years ago I actually named it UX consulting but no one knew what UX meant (User eXperience for those of you who don't work in the industry). Back then most people’s understanding of user centred design went as far as ‘usability’. And let’s face it, in 2003 there were a lot of really bad websites offering poor user experiences due largely to usability issues. User experience is so much more than usability and people understand that now.

Categories: Usability testing,User centred design,Tools & methods

Collaborative Design in Government - The importance of engaging stakeholders

Tania Lang - Principal and Trainer
September 28 2017

Anyone working in or for government in the digital space should be aware of the wide range of standards, guidelines and methods such as Australia’s Digital Service Standard, UK’s Digital Service Standard and USA’s usability.gov and Web design standards. These standards and frameworks provide excellent resources for providing customer centric websites and systems. One of the common themes across these standards is the importance of having a multidisciplinary team including product managers, business analysts, user researchers, designers and technical roles. However, little is mentioned in these standards about how these multidisciplinary teams should actually work together.  Having worked in or for government and many large organisations over 17 years I have learnt hard way about the importance of engaging stakeholders. In this article, I want to outline some of the methods we typically use to take stakeholders on the journey. This article is relevant for anyone working in large organisations as well as in or for government.

Categories: UX Training,Tools & methods,Usability testing,User research

Moderating usability test sessions: Are you Darth Vader or C-3PO?

Miranda Wee and Tania Lang
August 23 2017

Helping participants’ complete tasks; tipping them off that they have made a mistake; giving them too much freedom or leading participants; these are all things inexperienced test moderators might find themselves doing when moderating a test session. This article explores some of the common mistakes and why they’re damaging to the test outcomes presented through 5 Star Wars archetypes. Learn how to be a good test moderator and how to avoid being one of these 5 archetypes.

Categories: Usability testing,User centred design,Tools & methods

Usability testing versus expert views: a comparison of usability evaluation methods

Tania Lang, Michael Zrobok
December 07 2016

Here at Peak our preferred usability evaluation method is to conduct testing of a site or system with real representative users. In this article we explore the pros and cons of expert reviews versus usability testing and draw on a recent project which had some unexpected outcomes which triggered this article.

Categories: Evaluation,ROI,Content,Tools & methods,User centred design

Designing a robust user research approach

Amber Dean
February 01 2013

Designing a robust user research approach is about minimising bias, and maximising the validity and reliability of your research. Triangulation is a process you can use to help get your research ‘into shape’.

Categories: User research,Tools & methods
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