We are contacted by a department to assist with specific research needs. This can be to explore established user journeys or understand the user’s experience with current material and processes or explore how users experience a prototype of new functionality within an existing platform.
Writing research plan
Write a research plan outlining the research study goals, research questions and themes, methodology, participant profiles and how they will be recruited, participant incentives, the schedule and timelines, analysis and reporting method and timeline and lastly the risks which could influence the outcome and timeline of the research study.
Research cost and timeline
The research plan also includes a research cost and timeline document which outlines the cost for each part of the research i.e. writing and refining the interview script, preparation for interviews, conducting interviews, synthesizing the results and preparing the reports in the proposed format.
This document also contains a detailed research timeline with an overview of what will be completed on each day of the research study. This is a projection and may change if some of the risks identified in the research plan influence the proposed timeline.
Acceptance of plan and costing
Once the department accepts the research plan, timeline and costing, we can start with the research process.
Writing interview script
The interview script will contain an introduction, a general section to build rapport, questions to cover all themes and posed research questions and may also include a usability test should the research study require it.
Participants are recruited via an external recruiter, internal database or are provided by the department who requested the research.
Part of the participant recruitment may also include acquiring incentives to incentivise participants after their session. This can be in the form of a voucher or cash and can be managed by the researcher or the external recruiter.
During the recruitment phase, participants are also required to sign consent forms. This process is also completed by the researcher.
Interviews are conducted in a one-on-one video call environment and may consist of asking the predefined questions in the interview script and sometimes additionally conducting a usability test session where participants complete a set of tasks while the researcher observes their interactions with the prototype and then ask follow up questions about their experience.
These sessions are recorded with the permission of the participant to allow the researcher to go back to the recording to extract themes and insights
Results synthesis with affifnity mapping
Affinity mapping is a method that allows the researcher to extract insights and common themes from the research interviews. This method requires the researcher to make notes during the interview or refer back to the session recording to identify key thoughts and comments which with be grouped together to form the key themes, insights and findings.
Reporting/presentation of results
After the affinity mapping process is complete, the researcher now needs to document these findings in a format to present or deliver to the department.
The results can be delivered in a word document or PowerPoint presentation highlighting the key findings, what went well during the journey, what did not go well during the journey, highlights, pain points and lastly recommendations.