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Understanding Your Users

Book Description

Today many companies are employing a user-centered design (UCD) process, but for most companies, usability begins and ends with the usability test. Although usability testing is a critical part of an effective user-centered life cycle, it is only one component of the UCD process. This book is focused on the requirements gathering stage, which often receives less attention than usability testing, but is equally as important. Understanding user requirements is critical to the development of a successful product.

Understanding Your Users is an easy to read, easy to implement, how-to guide on usability in the real world. It focuses on the "user requirements gathering" stage of product development and it provides a variety of techniques, many of which may be new to usability professionals. For each technique, readers will learn how to prepare for and conduct the activity, as well as analyze and present the data —all in a practical and hands-on way. In addition, each method presented provides different information about the user and their requirements (e.g., functional requirements, information architecture, task flows). The techniques can be used together to form a complete picture of the users’ requirements or they can be used separately to address specific product questions. These techniques have helped product teams understand the value of user requirements gathering by providing insight into how users work and what they need to be successful at their tasks. Case studies from industry-leading companies demonstrate each method in action. In addition, readers are provided with the foundation to conduct any usability activity (e.g., getting buy-in from management, legal and ethical considerations, setting up your facilities, recruiting, moderating activities) and to ensure the incorporation of the results into their products.

·Covers all of the significant requirements gathering methods in a readable, practical way
·Presents the foundation readers need to prepare for any requirements gathering activity and ensure that the results are incorporated into their products
·Includes invaluable worksheet and template appendices
·Includes a case study for each method from industry leaders
·Written by experienced authors who teach conference courses on this subject to usability professionals and new product designers alike

Table of Contents

  1. Cover image
  2. Title page
  3. Table of Contents
  4. Critical acclaim for Understanding Your Users
  5. The Morgan Kaufmann Series in Interactive Technologies
  6. Copyright
  7. PREFACE
  8. ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
  9. PART 1: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW BEFORE CHOOSING AN ACTIVITY
    1. Chapter 1: INTRODUCTION TO USER REQUIREMENTS
      1. Introduction
      2. User-centered Design
      3. A Variety of Requirements
      4. Getting Stakeholder Buy-in for Your Activity
      5. The Methods
    2. Chapter 2: BEFORE YOU CHOOSE AN ACTIVITY: LEARNING ABOUT YOUR PRODUCT AND USERS
      1. Introduction
      2. Learn About Your Product
      3. Learn About Your Users
      4. Pulling It All Together
      5. Competitive Intelligence: Mining Design Concepts from Business School Libraries
      6. Personas: A Case Study by Microsoft Corporation
    3. Chapter 3: ETHICAL AND LEGAL CONSIDERATIONS
      1. Introduction
      2. Ethical Considerations
      3. Legal Considerations
      4. Pulling It All Together
    4. Chapter 4: SETTING UP FACILITIES FOR YOUR USER REQUIREMENTS ACTIVITY
      1. Introduction
      2. Using Your Company’s Existing Facilities
      3. Renting a Marketing or Hotel Facility
      4. Building a Permanent Facility
      5. Digital versus Analog Labs
      6. Pulling It All Together
      7. Designing an Innovative Cost-effective Usability Lab
  10. PART 2: GET UP AND RUNNING
    1. Chapter 5: PREPARING FOR YOUR USER REQUIREMENTS ACTIVITY
      1. Introduction
      2. Creating a Proposal
      3. Deciding the Duration and Timing of Your Session
      4. Recruiting Participants
      5. Tracking Participants
      6. Creating a Protocol
      7. Piloting Your Activity
      8. Pulling It All Together
    2. Chapter 6: DURING YOUR USER REQUIREMENTS ACTIVITY
      1. Introduction
      2. Welcoming Your Participants
      3. Dealing with Late and Absent Participants
      4. Warm-up Exercises
      5. Inviting Observers
      6. Introducing Your Think-aloud Protocol
      7. Moderating Your Activity
      8. Recording and Note-taking
      9. Dealing with Awkward Situations
      10. Pulling It All Together
  11. PART 3: THE METHODS
    1. Chapter 7: INTERVIEWS
      1. Introduction
      2. When Should You Conduct Interviews?
      3. Things To Be Aware of When Conducting Interviews
      4. Preparing to Conduct an Interview
      5. Conducting an Interview
      6. Data Analysis and Interpretation
      7. Communicate the Findings
      8. Lessons Learned
      9. Pulling It All Together
      10. Preparing and Conducting On-site Interviews
    2. Chapter 8: SURVEYS
      1. Introduction
      2. When Should You Use a Survey?
      3. Things To Be Aware of When Using a Survey
      4. Creating and Distributing Your Survey
      5. Data Analysis and Interpretation
      6. Communicate the Findings
      7. Lessons Learned
      8. Pulling It All Together
      9. Using Online Surveys to Quantify Usability Issues
    3. Chapter 9: WANTS AND NEEDS ANALYSIS
      1. Introduction
      2. When Should You Conduct a Wants and Needs Analysis?
      3. Things To Be Aware of When Conducting a Wants and Needs Analysis
      4. Preparing for a Wants and Needs Analysis
      5. Conducting a Wants and Needs Analysis
      6. The Brainstorming
      7. Data Analysis and Interpretation
      8. Communicate the Findings
      9. Modifications
      10. Lessons Learned
      11. Pulling It All Together
      12. Understanding Users’ Healthcare Wants and Needs
    4. Chapter 10: CARD SORTING
      1. Introduction
      2. When Should You Conduct a Card Sort?
      3. Things To Be Aware of When Conducting a Card Sort
      4. Group or Individual Card Sort?
      5. Preparing to Conduct a Card Sort
      6. Conducting a Card Sort
      7. Data Analysis and Interpretation
      8. Communicate the Findings
      9. Modifications
      10. Lessons Learned
      11. Pulling It All Together
      12. How Card Sorting Changed a Website Team’s View of How the Site Should Be Organized
    5. Chapter 11: GROUP TASK ANALYSIS
      1. Introduction
      2. Background to Task Analysis
      3. Overview of Group Task Analysis
      4. Preparing to Conduct a Group Task Analysis
      5. Conducting a Group Task Analysis
      6. Data Analysis and Interpretation
      7. Communicate the Findings
      8. Modifications
      9. Lessons Learned
      10. Pulling It All Together
      11. Capturing Task Information on How People Prepare For and Conduct Online Meetings
    6. Chapter 12: FOCUS GROUPS
      1. Introduction
      2. When Should You Use a Focus Group?
      3. Things To Be Aware of When Conducting a Focus Group
      4. Preparing to Conduct a Focus Group
      5. Conducting a Focus Group
      6. Data Analysis and Interpretation
      7. Communicate the Findings
      8. Modifications
      9. Lessons Learned
      10. Pulling It All Together
      11. Engineering Collaborative Tools: a Different Use
    7. Chapter 13: FIELD STUDIES
      1. Introduction
      2. When Should You Conduct Field Studies?
      3. Things To Be Aware of When Conducting Field Research
      4. Field Study Methods to Choose From
      5. Preparing for a Field Study
      6. Conducting a Field Study
      7. Data Analysis and Interpretation
      8. Communicate the Findings
      9. Lessons Learned
      10. Pulling It All Together
      11. Understanding the Staples Delivery Experience
  12. PART 4: WRAPPING UP
    1. Chapter 14: CONCLUDING YOUR ACTIVITY
      1. Introduction
      2. Prioritization of Findings
      3. Presenting Your Findings
      4. Reporting Your Findings
      5. Ensuring the Incorporation of Your Findings
      6. Pulling It All Together
      7. Calico Configuration Modeling Workbench
  13. PART 5: APPENDICES
    1. APPENDIX A: LEARN ABOUT USABILITY
    2. APPENDIX B: VENDORS THAT OFFER TRAINING IN USABILITY ACTIVITIES
    3. APPENDIX C: VENDORS THAT CONSULT ON USABILITY LAB DESIGN, SELL OR RENT LAB EQUIPMENT, OR BUILD LABS
    4. APPENDIX D: VENDORS THAT RECRUIT PARTICIPANTS, CONDUCT USABILITY ACTIVITIES FOR YOU, AND/OR RENT FACILITIES TO YOU
    5. APPENDIX E: REQUIREMENTS FOR CREATING A PARTICIPANT RECRUITMENT DATABASE
    6. APPENDIX F: AFFINITY DIAGRAM
    7. APPENDIX G: COMPUTERIZED QUALITATIVE ANALYSIS TOOLS
    8. APPENDIX H: REPORT TEMPLATE
    9. APPENDIX I: GLOSSARY
    10. APPENDIX J: REFERENCES
  14. INDEX
  15. FIGURE AND TABLE CREDITS
  16. ABOUT THE AUTHORS