Product Design | User Experience
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Introducing Google Ventures Design Sprints to MOO: Building Rapid Prototyping Capability

Facilitating Design Sprints & Building Rapid Prototyping Capability

Introducing Google Ventures approach to MOO to rapidly progress responsive design work and showcase a better way of working for the business. (2015 - 2016)

 
 

Background

As we launched our responsive project at MOO, I designed, lead and facilitated several major one and two week design sprint exercises to explore problems and solutions quickly. I convinced other department heads that this time-boxed approach has value. I secured designers from our creative team, photography, developers and my own team to work on these momentum-building exercises. We quickly built and tested several new page concepts at once as we made our ecommerce customer experience responsive. We tackled one set of pages at a time (for example, a product category page), and sketch, design and build responsive prototypes to share with the rest of the company and test with users in a short timespan.

 

Customer & Business Challenge

These design explorations or ‘spikes’ proved useful to build a wider business understanding of customer problems in the user journey, beyond the UX and product teams. Our previous research highlighted a list of prioritised customer issues when ordering with MOO. Our marketing team provided us with a list of their priorities to address. This included customers not understanding our printfinity offering, or our USPs as a printer, to more difficult challenges such as communicating the quality of our various paper stocks through the screen.

Some of the team's sketches and ideas as we worked through each customer problem.

Some of the team's sketches and ideas as we worked through each customer problem.

 

By the first afternoon of the week, already a wealth of ideas emerging from the team.

 

The Approach & My Role

These workshops and outputs are some of my major hands-on design achievements at MOO. I whittled down a list of applicable customer and business problems. I negotiated time from members of other departments and led the newly-formed team (who hadn’t worked together before) to create amazing responsive design prototypes in the space of 5 days. We did this by reframing many of the customer issues we believed to be problems in the journey, and worked up many sketched solutions which were responses to the 'How Might We...?' design framework.

We then roadtested these in the business and with customers to positive response. My role was planning and scripting the workshop, managing all output and creative direction, keeping the team spirits high and ongoing decision-making and direction to lead the group to a strong set of outcomes.

Team sketches.

Team sketches.

 
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Outcome

We piloted this approach in late 2014, and by 2015 it was being used regularly for all new responsive content being created for the redesign of MOO’s site. It was extremely well-received by the team working on it, as it provided a powerful way of making their ideas real. It demonstrated the value such a group could provide for the wider business, once various obstacles were taken out of their way.

Our new responsive designs also tested most highly of any we’d shown before with customers, and we managed to get ongoing buy-in from senior members of the business to maintain the work. My manager at the time noted it was often these projects that showed others in the business how to move forward.

Solving customer problems around what the end result will look like, what size MOO's cards are, and offering the ability to browse many designs easily and quickly.

Solving customer problems around what the end result will look like, what size MOO's cards are, and offering the ability to browse many designs easily and quickly.

What I've Learned

Outside of building a wonderful design practice and team, these sessions were some of my proudest at MOO. I loved seeing and fostering the team’s creativity and seeing their eyes light up as they realised this way of working could achieve powerful, and immediate results. This was particularly valuable in the eyes of the Executive team, who rallied behind this approach, once proven.

 
The prototype designs we arrived at after 5 days. We used the phone's accelerometer to show cards from various angles - a common customer complaint that they could not easily understand what they were going to get. This approach helped the marketing team understand how we could enhance the marketability of our products on the site, exploiting the benefits different device context offered.

The prototype designs we arrived at after 5 days. We used the phone's accelerometer to show cards from various angles - a common customer complaint that they could not easily understand what they were going to get. This approach helped the marketing team understand how we could enhance the marketability of our products on the site, exploiting the benefits different device context offered.

 

Key Team Credits

Interaction Designers: Mark Batup , Sam Charman, Suzy Willis, Jaime Robb
Front End: Jak Spalding & Andrew Nartey
Year: 2015