Lots of people would call this a focus group, he noted, but these tests are instead done individually. Focus groups can involve a lot of bias, with one or two people influencing the group as a whole, and by doing their tests individually, they avoid this complication.
“We show these designs to users to make sure they understand the concept, are able to use it, and know how much training they will need if it is to go into production in the near future,” he said.
Rachel Marcotte, Croesus’ business analyst, says one example of what the UX research team does is when they present a two-way filing system to testers. It was either a raster or a file format. “We played around with it and presented it to users. Little did the design team know how powerful the grille was or what the ultimate purpose of that grille actually was. It was a pretty positive surprise, ”she explained.
“As the interviews were running, so did the inputs, so we could do more research and find out what users were actually doing with the information,” she said. “Sometimes when you show your designs to people the reactions are not what we expected. In the end we learn and adapt our solutions to the needs of our users. “
An example from Bouchard of a project where the UX research team learned a lot was testing a Croesus for Investors product – an interface that advisors can show investors and then access all information through provided by the advisor.