Internal UX Academy

Series of seven theory and practice sessions covering the most common UX techniques in the design thinking process.

Design thinking process.

My role
syllabus, content and slides preparation, session planning and lecturing

About FlexTrade

London office has 120 developers and engineers who build and support different trading systems for equities, FX, options, futures and fixed income. As the first UX designer in the company, I am dedicated only to one of the product called FlexNOW, in which we have improved our UX maturity from Dev-centered UX (2th stage) to Managed usability (5th).

Issue

Recently, it was more difficult to continue growing on the team UX maturity scale due to limitations on a company level. Although people from other teams are interested in UX, they don't have the appropriate skillset to establish design techniques in their product development. If they became UX advocates, we could 1. improve UX of their products and 2. together we could push the UX maturity of the company.

UX Academy Idea

Before I started preparing content for the academy, I surveyed all employees whether there is enough interest in series of 2 hour-long sessions twice a month where we would go through topics from the syllabus mentioned below. The response was very positive, it turned out that there were 24 people ready to join the academy.

Syllabus

I have created 2 groups, so we could have enough time to go through practical exercises in each session. The syllabus is based on design thinking process theory, my favourite book The Elements of User Experience by J. J. Garret and the syllabus of Czech UXWell Academy in which I lectured before I moved to London. In total, we had 7 sessions covering the following topics:

User Research

Qualitative vs. quantitative techniques, attitudinal vs. behavioral research techniques, user interview (practice), user journey map (practice), lean canvas model (practice).

Information Architecture

User mental models (practice), card sorting (practice), See/Think/Do framework (practice), Why? How? What? framework (practice), microcopy and domain vocabulary.

Prototyping

Lo-fi and hi-fi prototypes, design brief (practice), design studio (practice), usability test (practice), heuristic usability evaluation.

Visual Design

Artistic vs. functional visual design, visual grammar - color, typography, layout (practice), iconography, imagery. CRAP - Contrast, repetition, alignment, proximity. Poster (practice), visual design feedback (practice), visual appeal measurement.

Psychology in UX

Cognitive psychology, Gestalt, cognitive load, cognitive biases, behavior model, persuasive design (practice), dark patterns.

UX in Agile Development

Design upfront - design zero/ahead, design spike. Lean UX - outcomes definition, hypothesis (practice), MVP, design systems, learn cycle. Agile dual track, Google Design Sprint.

UX Analytics & UX Management

Usage analytics, A/B test, ad-hoc and standardized surveys, e.g. System Usability Scale (practice), Net Promoter Score. Data-driven vs. data-informed development. Corporate UX maturity scale, beyond UX: CX and service design.

Session about user research.

User research session.

Prototyping session.

Prototyping session.

"It was really interesting, and gave me a lot of ideas and things to think about as I build things going forward."

Outcomes

More and more ad-hoc UX projects in the company has started appearing. While one team is trying to adopt the lean canvas model, another team introduced personas in their development and experiment with card sorting. Many teams also adopted CRAP visual design framework and they are also interested in prototyping. Establishing UX in a company is a long-run process, my goal is to go with some of the teams through the 3rd stage of UX maturity (Skunkworks UX) and get them to the 4th stage - Dedicated UX Budget so they are prepared to have their own designer.

UX Academy Stats

Out of the 24 people indicating the interest, 5 never showed up or attended only once. 7 people were at all sessions and 8 more people came at to 3 sessions at least.

A wirobook for all UX academy graduates.

A wirobook for all UX academy graduates.

"Great course, well structured and useful for any team member."

Skip to another project:

Contact

Meet me on my social networks.

Matej Kvasnovsky on LinkedInMatej Kvasnovsky on FacebookMatej Kvasnovsky on InstagramMatej Kvasnovsky on Twitter

Or get connected with my artistic alter ego KvasoArt and check my drawing style #concatism on Etsy or Instagram, in which I skew the reality by merging the unrelated, as the CONCAT function in the Excel does.