When you have direct access to users, and can get feedback from them, this is a gift. It really is wonderful to be able to reach out directly to your users and have them tell you how they feel about the product you are redesigning.
You’d better believe that I took advantage of this resource. I have access to some users right in my office. This is great, but it’s not everything. There are several other users located in other offices, in other countries, and they too, are gold mines of information. Since I know my place of employment will not fly me to Europe or Asia, I have to rely on other means to gather information from those remote users.
Though not the ideal form of research, a survey can be a good way to gather a lot of information, from several people, that are co-locted. Again, I would love to visit them in person, but this is not going to happen. They survey was my weapon of choice for gathering information.
The method was simple, I created a Google form, consisting of a few simple questions, and emailed the form to all users of the software. I had a great response, with over 90% giving feedback. So with all of the information gathered, I needed to share the high-level themes with the team.
My report to the team focused on what the users said are the “Worst Part of the Console” or the enterprise software they use to do their job. I think this information is especially important because it can act as a to-do list for improvements. That is what I hope they will do with the major and consistent complaints the users shared in the survey.
You are welcome to read the entire SOC Survey Report which I shared wit the team.
The importance of research is that is is meant to be shared; and research is critical to make informed design decisions. That is why is is so valuable to share your research findings with your team. Moreover, make sure that they actually read the research and make an action plan or updates based on the findings. Don’t go designing blind.