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User Centered Design in the Drupal agency

Anna Hanchar spoke on behalf of Zurich-based Drupal agency Amazee Labs. She talked the audience through some of the tools that they use. As a UXer in an agency, it’s always interesting to see what similarities and differences there are from agency to agency.

A lot of the things that Amazee use are similar to those that the Orange Bus UX team use:

  • wireframing – both Amazee and Orange Bus favour Axure (though it’s always worth pointing out that one licence costs $US500 unless you’re a student or educator who qualifies for the free educational version).
  • cardsorting – either in person with literal cards or online with tools such as Optimalsort
  • usability testing – Amazee use that old stock standard of videoconferencing GotoMeeting (with other alternatives such as join.me or Skype) for usability testing since most of their testing is remote moderated. Our team use this to some degree but also do one-to-one testing using Morae as well as remote unmoderated tools such as Usertesting.com and What Users Do.

Hanchar brought up a very important (if sometimes unexpected) truth when it comes to usability testing – often the tests can help overcome internal politics when it comes to something being done a certain way. We’ve certainly found that – the power of direct quotes or even short videos can help stakeholders get over their own assumptions.

I did have one question that I brought up in regards to her testing – she suggested to never test just before launch. While doing your first rounds of testing just before a launch is definitely a bad idea as it’s too late to fix any serious changes, doing a second set of tests can be useful to allow for quick wins as well as amends to go into a backlog.

Slides are available below.

Header image CC-BY-SA by Amazee Labs