Research Resources Stretched?

If you don’t have dedicated User Experience Research departments, or they don’t have capacity to take on your project, you may be missing the chance to get essential user feedback on your designs. Next time you face the decision to skip usability testing or missing development deadlines to fit it in, consider hiring a consultant or research firm to help.

Benefits of hiring outside UX help:

Fosters Internal Collaboration: When a consultant runs testing, internal team members can observe user testing together. We’ve seen many design challenges worked out collaboratively behind the glass. It puts UX and product owners together on level ground, creating the right environment for creativity and teamwork in the problem-solving stage.

Reduces bias: Good user experience practitioners strive for zero bias. But when you’ve had a hand in creating the design – I don’t care who you are – it’s impossible to be unbiased when it comes to testing. We want our own designs to succeed. So just take a deep breath, let go, and let someone else conduct the testing. 

Keeps internal resources working: “We can’t do user testing; we don’t have time.” A huge benefit of external research facilitation is that internal design teams can keep working while testing happens. This is especially important in agile development environments where user testing on certain components can take place while design sprints continue in other areas.

Provides fresh design recommendations: Good researchers will not only identify usability issues, but also they will tell you WHY those issues happened and recommend possible design solutions to fix them. One new idea from a fresh set of eyes could be just the catalyst you need to delight your users.