Web: UX Studies: Who Needs Them?
Marketers often think user experience research only pertains to consumers. While an improved user experience for consumers is the expected outcome, it's not the only objective of a well-organized study.
So says "It's Our Research: Getting Stakeholder Buy-in for User Experience Research Projects" by Tomer Sharon, a book published in April 2012 by Morgan Kaufmann.
Marketers, after all, are the ones originating the study, Sharon points out. Companies need to include product managers, software developers, designers and salespeople in the process, especially at the beginning.
Questions for those "stakeholders" are encapsulated in the chapter titled "Mmm … Interesting; So What Exactly Is It That You Want to Learn?"
● What is the product? In this description, marketers should include the product's purpose, what stage it's in (already launched?) ß why they developed it.
● Who are the users of the product?
● What do you want to know? Why? Here the stakeholders detail what they want to learn, why they need the study to learn it and what their business goals are for the product.
● When do you need the results? "Tomorrow" and "no idea" are bad answers, and "next quarter" is the best one.
● What will you do with the research results?
● Bonus question: What do you know now? Companies will often find they don't know everything about user experience, even if they perhaps thought they did.