When you have a complicated and time-sensitive job, sitting through training is the last thing you want on your plate.

This is a really unique UX project. A client came to us looking for help in re-establishing a training solution for their department. It wasn’t so much a matter of, “come up with training materials covering these five topics.” Instead it was a challenge to create reusable, scalable training solutions for a job that's complex and for an extremely busy and geographically dispersed audience.

This challenging project is scoped out into three phases: Discovery, Concept, and Prototype. From what we discovered, we'll concept potential solutions, and finally we'll prototype and iterate upon a few of the concepts.



The Discovery phase included a series of stakeholder interviews, a three-day training session, focus groups with trainers and other higher ups, and finally a series user interviews. The user interviews were conducted over the phone, which can be tricky to get an accurate contextual inquiry without being there. It's a welcome challenge to find the right amount of questions to ask to get the information you're looking for, but to not annoy the participant.

Using the plethora of data and information, we started to wrap up our Discovery phase by coming up with key insights.


To get to the key insights we deconstructed the information, which was a rather involved process of: listening to recordings, making notes, creating sticky notes with info, and grouping the info into higher-level key insights. Below is how we deconstructed the user interviews to find trends in the "story" of their job.

Deconstructing user interviews on sticky notes

Plotting our data to find trends


After all the data gathering, synthesis, and sense-making, we presented our findings to the client. I used Keynote as a tool for presenting and creating a leave-behind report. The findings included the five insights and four observations that will guide our brainstorm in the Concept phase. Here are some images from the report

Some general trends discovered.

Putting the general trends into a more comprehensive model.

Defining what insights and observations are.

A preview of the Concept phase.


We have a large amount information and insight to take with us to the Concept phase. This is the part that everyone's been waiting for, client included. It's bound to be an exciting phase where we'll so some serious brainstorming, whiteboarding, and sketching. I'm looking forward to this and seeing which options we try out in the Prototype phase. Stay tuned.


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michelletchin @ mac . com

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