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Friday, September 24
 

9:15am EDT

Ecosystem of a UX Leader
Whether you are an individual contributor, UX manager, or UX Director, to be a successful and effective UX leader, you need to be connected to the larger organization, build relationships and depend on so many of your counterparts. In this talk, we will review some strategies and tactics that can help you focus on growing your ecosystem.

Speakers
avatar for Kanwaldeep 'KD' Arneja

Kanwaldeep 'KD' Arneja

Senior Director, User Experience, Clarivate
KD Singh Arneja has been in the industry since 2003. While working with startups and mature companies, he has designed and delivered delightful products that have been the culmination of UX, Agile practices, and Design Thinking, all while working with high-performing teams.KD is currently... Read More →


Friday September 24, 2021 9:15am - 10:00am EDT
5 - Liberty (Career)

9:15am EDT

Design for Users Everywhere – How to Craft a Meaningful International UX
Our products are no longer used in single markets. Internet accessibility and digital innovations have reshaped the global user landscape. Nearly 60% of the world’s population is online, and 74% of those people do not speak English.
To drive user retention and business impact outside of your home market, it’s crucial to craft a user experience that resonates with an international audience. Resonance goes beyond “translating the UX copy.” It requires a deep understanding of the local users’ behaviors and their contexts of use to inform design efforts.

This talk will illustrate what makes an international user different, why we need to consider international UX & inclusive design, and 9 timeless tips that you can embed in the foundation of your UX process to set you up for success and help you drive international impact at scale.

Speakers
avatar for Yingdi Qi

Yingdi Qi

Senior Solution Consultant, Google


Friday September 24, 2021 9:15am - 10:00am EDT
2 - Back Bay C/D (Design)

9:15am EDT

Navigating the Complexity of Trust
Trust is complex and transient. Context, safety, privacy, respect, and many other considerations are built into each individuals’ concept of trust. How can we examine this complexity in a way that supports the work of making digital experiences? What research supports this work and how can we use practices of responsible development to make systems that earn appropriate levels of trust? What is an appropriate level of trust for emerging technologies such as machine learning systems? This talk will examine trust and how UX practitioners can define and measure it.

Speakers
avatar for Carol Smith

Carol Smith

Sr. Research Scientist, Human-Machine Interaction, Carnegie Mellon University's SEI
Carol Smith’s UX career spans 20 years, collaborating on complex problems and working across industries and platforms. She has worked on improving interactions and integrating ethics for humane experiences with artificially intelligent systems, autonomous vehicles, and other emerging... Read More →


Friday September 24, 2021 9:15am - 10:00am EDT
1 - Back Bay A/B (Research)

9:15am EDT

Draining the UX Swamp
This talk tells the story of how Delta Market significantly boosted its competitiveness by increasing its UX maturity. Delta Market is a fictitious chain of more than 500 medium to large supermarkets. The talk describes the nine specific steps that Huxley, a newly hired UX professional, took to move Delta Market from a low maturity level (“the UX Swamp”) to a high UX maturity level. The talk describes Delta’s journey from developer-centered and complaint-driven design based solely on opinions to an organization where professionally managed UX work provides significant, measurable improvements in competitiveness and UX for customers and coworkers. The steps can be easily applied in your organization.

Speakers
avatar for Rolf Molich

Rolf Molich

Owner, DialogDesign
Rolf Molich manages DialogDesign, a tiny Danish usability consultancy.In 2014, Rolf received the UXPA Lifetime Achievement Award for his work on the Comparative Usability Evaluation project.He is vice president of the UXPA, which develops and maintains the CPUX-certification. Rolf... Read More →


Friday September 24, 2021 9:15am - 10:00am EDT
3 - Independence (Strategy)

9:15am EDT

Defense UX: field research with the military
An overview of the nuances, struggles, and joys of practicing UX within the defense industry,
which distinguish the Department of Defense from the commercial industry from a
practitioner's point of view. Followed by a discussion on the need to think creatively and adapt
common commercial practices on the fly, as well as the state of UX (and Agile practices
generally) within defense.

Speakers
avatar for Vanessa Battaglia

Vanessa Battaglia

Human Factors Engineer, Raytheon


Friday September 24, 2021 9:15am - 10:00am EDT
4 - Republic (Research & Panels)

10:15am EDT

Mentoring
We will set up breakout rooms for our group mentoring sessions. There will be two mentors in each breakout room. Up to 10 people can attend a given breakout room, on a first-come, first-served basis. Note that we will have two types of group mentoring sessions:
  • "New to UX" or "Career Changers"
  • "Career Development"

Speakers

Friday September 24, 2021 10:15am - 11:00am EDT
5 - Liberty (Career)

10:15am EDT

Write Accessible Copy that Improves Readability for All
Writers, let’s get out ahead of the V3 WCAG guidelines that will advise on both copy and cognitive challenges.
Cognitive impairments present us with opportunities to improve our writing for all. When we address the unique needs of folks with challenges, we can craft and design trustworthy, engaging copy. This text builds loyal customers.

As writers, we’re often avid and good readers. Let’s turn the non-fiction book backwards for a few minutes and dive into dyslexia. Folks with dyslexia (children and adults) often find it difficult to decode words and/or abstract meaning from text. In part this might be due to a tendency to skip words, sentences, or even (gasp!) key paragraphs of our copy.

Let’s flip this information-based book back again: When searching for information, do you often skip over text? Do you ever struggle to comprehend a set of steps? Have you ever searched for a required button, link, or FAQ? Maybe you’ve had to reread text because of the way it’s formatted…. If you’ve faced any of these challenges, you can see that we’re all on common ground at times.

As a parent and teacher, I’ve also been co-chair of our town’s special education advisory board to the school committee. As a writer, I’ve done user testing specifically for folks with dyslexia as well as those without. It’s been fascinating to witness firsthand that the research is right: The writing tools that help folks with dyslexia improve the user experience for everyone.

In this session, we’ll combine on-point, informative copy with a new understanding of the copy design elements that help users achieve their goals. We’ll also look at, and compare images that support text. Putting it altogether, we’ll look trust and brand loyalty.

Ready to do some flips and learn more? Join me!


Friday September 24, 2021 10:15am - 11:00am EDT
4 - Republic (Research & Panels)

10:15am EDT

Psychological Safety in Teams: The UX of a Design Review
UX designers can face many challenges day-to-day. We are usually responsible for
evangelizing (let’s be honest: selling) our work. From newcomers to established teams
within a company, explaining the value of UX is a key part of our roles. We are also the
ones who usually adapt our pace/process when a company’s rapid growth means a
switch to an agile methodology (don’t worry we won’t be talking about this thorny issue).

These, among other challenges, mean that presenting a unified front when part of a
design team is all but essential to the survival of good UX practices within an
organization. And there is a very important factor that determines how confident and in
sync a team feels. That feeling, that cohesion, comes from psychological safety.
True psychological safety at work can be a more complex issue that stems from
organizational policies and management. We found during our interviews that
transparency and fluency of information from management to teams was absolutely key
to feeling informed and empowered individual contributors. However, this is a cultural
shift that might be outside a design team’s control. We wanted to focus our presentation
on something within the control of the designers themselves. We would like to explore
how team members can empower each other by creating psychological safety during
design reviews/critiques. A psychologically safe team is more open to learning new
things, taking risks, and being innovative. Members of teams who trust each other
collaborate more, which leads to better output.

We wanted to share our experience of working in a new team that grew and changed
rapidly. Through many challenges, we managed to maintain a healthy sense of trust,
and continued to innovate. It became clear to those around us, and to us, that we had
built something special. We became curious and wanted to know how. Employing
proper user-centric methods, we interviewed our teammates, our past manager, and
collaborators. We came out with some key insights about what makes designers and
collaborators psychologically safe during design reviews. We would like to share with
others how to build psychological safety within their design teams.

Speakers
avatar for Ketan Galhotra

Ketan Galhotra

UX Designer, Eversource


Friday September 24, 2021 10:15am - 11:00am EDT
2 - Back Bay C/D (Design)

10:15am EDT

Partners in crime: lessons learned from collaborative research with analysts
There is so much power when combining quantitative and qualitative research methods yet we often run into hurdles when trying to collaborate across disciplines in practice. If your organization has the luxury of data analysts but does not have a mechanism for working together, this session is for you! Too often we miss out on great research opportunities because of competing priorities across business units or lack of understanding of each others’ roles. In other cases, we have the best intentions to collaborate, but combining methods becomes painful and inefficient.

As a UX Researcher and Product Analyst who frequently partner on research initiatives, we want to bridge the gap between our two roles. We’ll discuss the unique impact that collaboration can bring to your organization. You’ll leave this session with an understanding of common challenges encountered when working across these two disciplines and will learn concrete tips to lead more effective mixed methods research.

Speakers
avatar for Margot Lieblich

Margot Lieblich

Research Lead, HubSpot
After stumbling into a design thinking workshop while working in healthcare IT, I found my passion in the field of UX and design research. Since that happy accident, I've gone on to complete my Master's in Human Factors and Information Design at Bentley University and currently work... Read More →


Friday September 24, 2021 10:15am - 11:00am EDT
1 - Back Bay A/B (Research)

10:15am EDT

Scaling Design with Design Ops: The UX of UX
Are the designers on your mid to large-size team frustrated & out-of-sync with each other? Is application design quality declining? Are developer and stakeholder relationships beginning to fray? Or has your team been so successful, they no longer know how to scale to meet demand?

Over the next forty-five minutes, come learn the practical steps you can use to re-align the direction of your UX team, provide systems of scale, and boost the awareness and value of your team.

It's time to UX your UX Org. It's time for your team to consider Design Ops.

Speakers
avatar for Chris LaChance

Chris LaChance

Design Ops Lead, Pegasystems


Friday September 24, 2021 10:15am - 11:00am EDT
3 - Independence (Strategy)

11:15am EDT

Crafting Communication and Inquiry: Visual Thinking Strategies for UX
Deep observation, diversity of perspectives, active collaboration, psychological safety, comfort with ambiguity: all are fundamental to successful, engaging work in UXD, yet few experiences cultivate these skills simultaneously. One way to get there is through the dynamic experience of looking at and discussing art, then applying what you learn to your crucial conversations and interactions. You’ll experience and learn more about the discussion methodology, Visual Thinking Strategies. This research-based approach originated in museums and is now applied in UXD and business broadly. After we guide you through an art discussion, we’ll share a business case to connect the dots. You’ll take away a carefully worded question that deepens evidence-based reasoning.

Speakers
JH

Josephine Holmboe

Director, UX Design, Fidelity Investments


Friday September 24, 2021 11:15am - 12:00pm EDT
5 - Liberty (Career)

11:15am EDT

What’s in a story? Engagement, connection, and better UX.
With short attention spans and a barrage of information coming at us every day, it would be easy to assume that short tag lines are the way to go when crafting copy. But long copy has been shown to be more effective in many situations. Why? Because users love stories; that is how we as humans relate to one another and understand context.

Speakers
avatar for Marli Mesibov

Marli Mesibov

Content Strategy Lead, Verily Life Sciences
Marli Mesibov is a Lead Content Strategist at Verily Life Sciences. She has been helping people understand doctors, hospitals, and health insurers for over a decade. Marli is a frequent conference speaker, a former editor of the UX publication UX Booth, and was voted one of MindTouch’s... Read More →


Friday September 24, 2021 11:15am - 12:00pm EDT
4 - Republic (Research & Panels)

11:15am EDT

The UX of Conversational Design
Conversational Design has high demand for good designers and the demand is increasing daily as the technology becomes better. We are expectng a future with voice-integrated visual interfaces; an understanding of voice interface is therefore becoming increasingly important for UX designers. This presentaion will connect UX concepts to conversational design, so that you can articulate and relate your skills as an experienced UX designer when interviewing for a Conversational Design job or a job that requires you to work with a conversational designer. Conversational Design courses and resources will also be shared.

Speakers
avatar for Yina Smith-Danenhower

Yina Smith-Danenhower

Conversational Product Designer, XAPP AI
Yina is a Conversational Product Designer at XAPP AI. XAPP AI provides conversational AI customer self-service and business productivity solutions for large and medium sized businesses. XAPP AI is an Amazon Web Services (AWS) Independent Software Provider (ISV), part of the AWS Contact... Read More →


Friday September 24, 2021 11:15am - 12:00pm EDT
2 - Back Bay C/D (Design)

11:15am EDT

Give Me the Quick Version! Using One-Pagers to Communicate Research Findings Far and Wide
A year ago, I created a one-page research summary template based on user research with my stakeholders. I will take you through a blueprint of the one-pager and the ways you can use it in your organization to share your findings more effectively.

Speakers
avatar for Mike Ryan

Mike Ryan

Principal User Experience Researcher, Liberty Mutual Insurance
Mike is a Principal User Researcher at Liberty Mutual Insurance and works on a variety of mobile and desktop applications for sales and service tasks. Mike has been working in user experience since 1995 for companies including Thomson Reuters, Trend Micro, HP, Staples, Welch’s... Read More →


Friday September 24, 2021 11:15am - 12:00pm EDT
1 - Back Bay A/B (Research)

11:15am EDT

Service Blueprint vs. Journey Map in enterprise UX design
As Enterprise UX designers, we always ask ourselves whether all B2C design approaches are effective in B2B or Enterprise environment? While the UX design process remains largely the same; sometimes, the same tools that are highly effective in one environment fall short in the other. User Journey is a widely used tool for B2C products, but how well does it visualize a complex enterprise software? Can a Service Blueprint address the gaps that a User Journey does not fulfill?

In this talk, we will compare the effectiveness of Persona and User Journey tools as compared to that of a Service Blueprint, in the context of enterprise software based on an internal case study. We will also discuss how a complex product design changed the business process in our organization and what we've learned along the way.

Join us as we take you through a part of our design process where we evolved from using Journey maps to a Service Blueprint. We believe, a Service Blueprint better helps integrate the user journeys of all the personas that collaborate in complex workflows and provides focus on the critical pain points of the entire business process.

Speakers
avatar for Kanika Ahirwar

Kanika Ahirwar

User Experience Designer, Medidata Solutions
avatar for Pouya Shabanpour

Pouya Shabanpour

Manager, User Experience, Medidata Solutions


Friday September 24, 2021 11:15am - 12:00pm EDT
3 - Independence (Strategy)

1:00pm EDT

Boost your Emotional Intelligence to move from good UX to great
The industry shift towards human-centered design and a democratized design process has encouraged UXers to optimize results by directly involving the people for whom they design. But humans are complex, and certain personal interaction skills don’t come naturally to everyone. Navigating diverse priorities, opinions, and personalities is difficult. Ethnographic research, co-creation workshops, cross-team design reviews, multidisciplinary project teams, socializing and defending design decisions with stakeholders, all should require UXers to self-reflect on how they handle situations. A typical design education doesn’t completely prepare UXers for the challenges of a role that sits at the intersection of many other disciplines.

The greatest UXers I’ve observed have one thing in common – emotional intelligence (EI).

The term emotional intelligence has in recent years become quite commonplace, but many often mistake it to only mean keeping a cool head in all situations. During this talk, I will describe the four competencies of EI: Self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, and relationship management and take a closer look at how great UXers express these and why they’re critical to make an impact in any UX career.

The talk will also contain actionable advice on how new and experienced UXers can build these competencies so they’re able to connect with, understand and persuade important stakeholders in the design process.

Speakers
avatar for Priyama Barua

Priyama Barua

Experience Strategy Director, Mad*Pow
As a service designer, design researcher and experience strategist, her work affects the lives of many people and can change the strategic direction of large Fortune 500 member companies. She leverages a background in design, business and education, to create compelling experiences... Read More →


Friday September 24, 2021 1:00pm - 1:45pm EDT
5 - Liberty (Career)

1:00pm EDT

The Indispensable Principles of Designing Complex Interfaces
Complex, data-intensive apps pose serious UX challenges, requiring crowded UI that only Excel ninjas could love. Learn the secrets to building compact digital products that perform powerfully and help people get real work done. Change the way you think about constrained UI. Users will love you for it.

Speakers
avatar for Dean Schuster

Dean Schuster

owner/principle, truematter
Founder and partner of truematter, a user experience strategy firm, Dean has created user-centered digital products for 25 years. He oversees truematter’s UX practice, leading strategic engagements for regional organizations as well as the Fortune 100.Dean specializes in defining... Read More →


Friday September 24, 2021 1:00pm - 1:45pm EDT
2 - Back Bay C/D (Design)

1:00pm EDT

Fighting Back Against Fictional Personas
The creation and use of personas can be a hotly debated topic among UX practitioners. Many of us have experienced the pain of crafting detailed biographies of current or target customers that represent people that we have no evidence actually exist in the world. In an effort to achieve empathy, focus is given to attributes that don’t really matter to our design work. Project teams then get attached to these figments of our collective imaginations and craft solutions for people that have no basis in reality. And this attachment makes it challenging to update the personas when we get actual data in the course of our work.
 
In an effort to combat creating fictional representations of customers, the speakers advocate for incorporating quantitative research into persona development with a focus on uncovering behaviors that will matter to the design and are likely to correlate in populations. We can leave the demographics that probably don’t matter for UX behind and still create empathy, differentiation and the team short-hand for user goals that personas provide so well. 
 
In this session, we will discuss a case study where this methodology was used, our results and what we’d do differently in the future.

Speakers
avatar for Emma Ditto

Emma Ditto

Director, User Research, Fidelity Investments
avatar for Margot Lieblich

Margot Lieblich

Research Lead, HubSpot
After stumbling into a design thinking workshop while working in healthcare IT, I found my passion in the field of UX and design research. Since that happy accident, I've gone on to complete my Master's in Human Factors and Information Design at Bentley University and currently work... Read More →


Friday September 24, 2021 1:00pm - 1:45pm EDT
1 - Back Bay A/B (Research)

1:00pm EDT

Innovating and Collaborating Remotely: How the UX Community Adapted
Collaborative workshops are central to Design Thinking and innovation practices. Workshops bring multi-disciplinary groups together for unique perspectives and support divergent thinking by allowing participants to think visually, and build on each other’s ideas. Yes, workshops should be structured, but often the best outcomes result when the team goes off script. Thus, historically, creative workshops were done in-person.   
Of course, the global pandemic accelerated the need for many teams to conduct these sessions remotely. For better or worse, teams moved their in-person methods and protocols to the online environment. The good news is that there are some advantages to remote workshops. For example, online or asynchronous messaging in a workshop may make it easier for introverts to participate on a level playing field. Also, there is the potential for increased diversity in attendance.

But, there are challenges as well. There are plenty of studies showing that remote work has its limitations, and this may impact the outcome of creative, collaborative working sessions. For example, what effect does not being able to see body language have on our ability to gauge reactions to an idea? If visual thinking is key to innovation, what is the implication of leveraging online tools versus good, old-fashioned tactile paper and pen, or whiteboard markers? How does screen fatigue affect our creativity?

This presentation will take stock of our current collaborative ideation and workshop methods in the hybrid, remote environment we find ourselves in today. The talk will explore the implications of moving in-person workshops online, and present themes, best practices, and unique methods for remote Design Thinking activities. Insights are based on interviews with over 20+ UX leaders on the topic. Finally, the presentation will present a case study and lessons learned from a recent innovation project.

Speakers
avatar for Michael Hawley

Michael Hawley

VP Experience Research & Strategy, ZeroDegrees
I’ve worked for 20+ years researching and designing digital experiences. From my first jobs working with hospital staff to understand new software, to serving as Chief Design Officer at Mad*Pow, to my most recent position as VP Experience Research & Strategy at ZeroDegrees, I’ve... Read More →


Friday September 24, 2021 1:00pm - 1:45pm EDT
3 - Independence (Strategy)

1:00pm EDT

5 Concrete Actions UX Designers Can Take Today to Improve the World
As designers we shape many things in the world. We are expert user researchers, problem solvers, fixers, inventors and know how to make an idea manifest. Yet we know that massive positive change is needed badly in the world. We witness rampant social injustices tied with impending climate catastrophe on the heels of a pandemic that won’t quit. It can be overwhelming to face these issues, and we feel limited by business priorities, budgets, job security, health concerns, and so on.

Our mission as UX professionals is to do design that is good for people. Easy-to-use is not the extent of our impact. Do you have the personal motivation or sense of responsibility that you want to do more? Does your design sensibility go beyond the typical set of requirements? We have the opportunity and the ability to lead with ideas, suggestions and behaviors that can have results for the good of all. We are capable of effecting change—but where to start? This session will help you take the first steps or inspire you to keep stepping up if you already are.

In this panel, 5 designers seriously concerned about the current state of the world will share their ideas for stepping into action right away. Each panelist will present one important concrete action that you can take right now to have a positive impact on the world around you. The panelists also look forward to a lively discussion with the audience. Join us to have your awareness raised and to raise ours with your own thoughts and questions.

Speakers
avatar for Elizabeth Rosenzweig

Elizabeth Rosenzweig

President of Board, Director, World Usability Day
avatar for Dorothy Shamonsky

Dorothy Shamonsky

Director UX R&D, Integrated Computer Solutions
Dorothy Shamonsky has over 30 years of experience as an interface designer. She has spent much of her career working on applied research projects for such clients as MOMA, Merrill Lynch, and MTV. She held teaching positions at New York University and Pratt Institute. Dorothy holds... Read More →
avatar for Brian K Smith

Brian K Smith

Boston College
avatar for Dan Zollman

Dan Zollman

UX Strategist, Independent
Dan Zollman is an information architect and UX strategist living in Boston, MA. His interests in purposeful, ethical, and systemic design have evolved through his experiences practicing IA and UX in complex organizations including Vanguard, Tufts University, and the Commonwealth of... Read More →


Friday September 24, 2021 1:00pm - 1:45pm EDT
4 - Republic (Research & Panels)

2:00pm EDT

Sponsored talk
Speakers

Friday September 24, 2021 2:00pm - 2:45pm EDT
5 - Liberty (Career)

2:00pm EDT

Mentoring Session
Speakers

Friday September 24, 2021 2:00pm - 2:45pm EDT
6 - Ballroom (UXPA Boston)

2:00pm EDT

Build for action, not distraction Five practical steps you can take to build successful UI
It seems simple, build a system that allows users to effortlessly reach their goals. So why is it a challenge for teams to stay aligned to user needs throughout the entire design process? Distractions crop up, extra design elements are added along the way, and soon you have a user interface that potentially causes user diversion and is not the streamlined interface you envisioned it would be. In this session the audience watches the development of a mobile app to discover five simple steps they can take to build UI that avoids distraction and helps users reach their goals.
  • Mapping results from research, recognizing and grouping user needs to recognize importance and hierarchy
  • Brainstorming features that align to those user needs
  • Mapping user needs to specific features
  • Building a rough information architecture from features
  • Prototyping and testing

Speakers
avatar for Jennifer Smith

Jennifer Smith

Vice President, American Graphics Institute
Jennifer Smith's expertise bridges the gap between design, and development of print, web, and interactive design.Jennifer's career started when she was one of the first creative directors to push the limits of technology and its integration with design. She has since managed and developed... Read More →


Friday September 24, 2021 2:00pm - 2:45pm EDT
4 - Republic (Research & Panels)

2:00pm EDT

Oh No! Avoiding the Unintended Consequences of Design
As UX designers, we have the best intentions for the products we create. The trouble is, we don’t always anticipate the things that cause problems -- the unintended consequences.

It’s the design consequences that we didn’t see coming that can have large ramifications, and even do the opposite of what we set out to do.

So how can we avoid this? How do we strive to avoid the consequences that can trip up our designs? Creative Director and Senior UX Strategist Cindy Brummer explains the steps designers can and should take in their practice.

Speakers
avatar for Cindy Brummer

Cindy Brummer

CEO, Standard Beagle Studio


Friday September 24, 2021 2:00pm - 2:45pm EDT
2 - Back Bay C/D (Design)

2:00pm EDT

How to develop your own UX Research Panel
Are your user research and usability initiatives hobbled by an inability to quickly bring in appropriate participants for research studies? In this presentation, you will learn the process for creating a participant panel tailored to your team’s user research needs. We will cover the full sweep of steps involved in developing a panel that include defining requirements, evaluating panel platform vendors, developing online and in-person recruitment strategies, operational best practices, data management and security, how to keep participants engaged, and gaining political and financial support to build the panel. Audience members will learn the practical steps around building a user research panel from concept to realization. They will also walk away with practical knowledge and a reading list of articles, podcasts and books that describe how to build a successful and cost-effective participant panel for UX Research.

Speakers
avatar for Kay Corry Aubrey

Kay Corry Aubrey

UX Researcher and Trainer, www.usabilityresources.net
Kay Corry Aubrey is an independent usability consultant and trainer from the Boston area. She particularly enjoys working with organizations who use technology to build community. Kay trains product managers and market researchers in User Experience and teaches within Northeastern... Read More →


Friday September 24, 2021 2:00pm - 2:45pm EDT
1 - Back Bay A/B (Research)

2:00pm EDT

Optimizing Design Operations for Inclusive User Experiences
Get practical ideas for creating efficient workflows that use teamwork, tools and resources to improve the quality and impact of design outputs benefiting all users.

The presenters will draw upon their combined 40 years of experience in UX, digital accessibility to deliver an engaging and actionable presentation. Attendees will walk away with a strategy they can implement at their organization to optimize design operations in order to create user experiences that are inclusive of all users, regardless of age, ability or means of access.

Speakers
avatar for Gary Aussant

Gary Aussant

Director of Accessibility Consulting, Perkins Access
Over my 25-year career in UX and accessibility consulting, I've helped numerous Fortune 100 companies including Bank of America, Microsoft, Google, Facebook, eBay, General Motors, Transamerica, and Twitter embrace inclusive design methodologies. I specialize in employing design thinking... Read More →
avatar for Michael Beauchamp

Michael Beauchamp

UX Manager, Amica Insurance
For over 10 years, Michael has forged the way for UX at a major insurance company and currently oversees UX strategy and direction, as well as digital accessibility. His work is driven by the value placed on diversity and bringing people together in order to collaborate and thrive... Read More →


Friday September 24, 2021 2:00pm - 2:45pm EDT
3 - Independence (Strategy)

3:00pm EDT

10-minute talks
Josephine Massey - To Run Successful User Interviews, Be Prepared to Throw Out the Script

If you’re a UX designer or researcher running user interviews, you will spend a large part of your time writing interview scripts. You’ll craft the perfect introduction, make sure to match your questions with your-research goals, and try to think of the best open-ended ways to get at what you’re trying to learn—without leading your user on. But sometimes putting so much time into the perfect script doesn’t allow you to actually react to what your user is trying to tell you.
Especially if you’re early on in your UX research journey, it can feel like you need to stick to a plan. However, interviews often don’t go as planned. I’ll share some insights into how departing from your script and learning how to be adaptive in your interview can produce far more useful and rich research findings.


Nouran Shehata - Storytime: How 4 Peers from non-UX Disciplines Created a UX Practice at a Large Enterprise

Companies now more than ever are realizing the importance and value of more intentionally integrating UX into their software development practices. While this realization is a great first step in achieving your true potential as a company and delighting your users, a series of questions typically ensue: Where do I start? Should I hire the folks for this function externally? Should I recruit in-house? What processes do I need? How do I hold my organization accountable to UX practices? Will these UX practices play nice with AGILE software development? What does success look like and how do I measure it?

And so with that being said, I’m going to tell you a story. A story of a Product Manager, a Program Manager, a Content Designer and a Data Engineer who were tasked with answering these questions and more. Four people with no background in user experience were tasked with spinning up a UX function at their organization and spoiler alert: they figured it out and learned a considerable amount along the way.
As the individual tasked with leading this initiative and maturing this practice, I’ll be presenting the 8-month journey that led to many, many actionable lessons learned on creating a team structure, understanding the product development landscape of your organization, acknowledging/recognizing your stakeholders, proving “your worth” as a new function to the enterprise, creating the UX processes that will help you design/identify/measure user experience improvements for your organization’s products and last, but certainly not least, how to realistically define/measure success to tell a profound value story for your UX practice (especially if you have no prior UX experience or budget for formal UX practitioners).
Scaling UX for the first time at a company is never an easy feat or one size fits all, but if we can do it, we’re confident you can take some of these lessons, tailor them to your organization and create your success story.


Georgiy Chernyavsky - Passing Contrast Check does not Always Ensure Pleasant Reading Experience

Web elements that meet accessibility requirements for contrast are not always easy to read. This may sound like absolute nonsense. We have WCAG for a reason, they are scientific, they help us design the better web for all the people, right? Well, it is not as simple as that. People’s judgements are quite subjective, even when they are rooted in simple human biology. By formalizing the way users perceive web pages with standards such as contrast ratios we are simply taking an educated guess. And this guess may not work for everyone, there will always be extremes. Such as people with a certain type of colour blindness, who still prefer a colour combination that does not pass the contrast check, but instead “feels right” for them. Surprisingly, there exist certain “accessible” colour combinations that are WCAG compatible, but difficult and unpleasant to read. Well, what do we do then? Join me in this short talk on colour palettes and accessibility, where we will review an example of accessible-inaccessible design element and learn our options of dealing with the problem.

Speakers
avatar for Georgiy Chernyavsky

Georgiy Chernyavsky

Senior Product Designer, Citrix
avatar for Josephine Massey

Josephine Massey

User Experience Designer, Harvard Business Review
Josephine is a UX designer and leads UX research at the Harvard Business Review. She thrives in the early-stages of the design process where she can tackle complex user flows and champion a research-first approach. Prior to HBR, she designed experiences and educational resources across the US, UK and China working within edTech and travel. Josephine is an active me... Read More →
NS

Nouran Shehata

Product Experience Manager, SMB and Key Accounts, Unitedhealthcare, Optum
Hi! I’m a native Jersey girl (recently turned southerner) with an unwavering passion for product management. My experience has primarily been in creating outstanding healthcare products for our commercial business line, but as of last year, I was charged with one of my greatest... Read More →


Friday September 24, 2021 3:00pm - 3:45pm EDT
5 - Liberty (Career)

3:00pm EDT

Over-complicated? Over-simplified? The UX Efficient Frontier
For years we, designers, have been celebrated for making everything easier. For decluttering complex and convoluted interfaces. For adding a bit of emotion to all those dull screens. But can we go too far sometimes?
What makes for a good user experience is entirely dependent on who uses it. There is a danger in treating complex problems as if they were much simpler than they really are. Especially in industries like financial services! When simple becomes simplistic, we run the risk of disempowering our users.

In this talk, you'll find out:

  • How to find the right balance between simplicity and complexity
  • How not to be overwhelmed when designing for complex apps and tools
  • How to design with advanced users in mind

Speakers

Friday September 24, 2021 3:00pm - 3:45pm EDT
4 - Republic (Research & Panels)

3:00pm EDT

UX design without sketching
Can you design without sketching? As a recent poll indicates, most likely not. While sketching is the heart of the design process and is a great way to suggest and explore design alternatives, it's time to ask: Isn't sketching really UI design, and true UX design requires broader thinking using other tools?
 
In this talk, Everett will explore what sketching is all about in the UI vs. UX context, leading to an emphatic "yes" to the question above. [the presenter] will then share several examples of UX design challenges that were done better by delaying sketching, [the presenter] will explore three ways to design a user experience without sketching.
 
By attending, you will learn three important UX design tools that you probably aren’t using now.

Speakers
avatar for Everett McKay

Everett McKay

Principal, UX Design Edge
UX Design Edge


Friday September 24, 2021 3:00pm - 3:45pm EDT
2 - Back Bay C/D (Design)

3:00pm EDT

Converting to UX Research: How to Leverage CRO Testing to Kickstart Your Organization's User Research Practice
UX research is tough to sell in some organizations. We know that gathering user insights is the best way to design intuitive experiences, but for some stakeholders talking to users is a waste of time and resources that could be spent elsewhere.

I've been in this situation too many times to count, and I'm happy to report that even the most stubborn stakeholders can be won over. From tire retailers to Montessori subscription companies, I've had the pleasure of introducing teams to user research in a way that earns trust through clear business impact: AB Testing.

In this presentation, you will learn how to leverage your team's desire to move quickly and win big to get buy in for conducting UX research. By combining user research with AB testing strategies, you can show stakeholders just how much they leave on the table when the organization is not talking to users.

Together, we will investigate common arguments against running UX research, why AB testing appeals to organizations of all sizes, and how to get started with low-cost user research activities for AB testing programs.
We'll learn how to run usability tests to uncover optimizations and how to build a case for research by tracking user-driven AB test performance.

Finally, we'll look at how one streaming service was convinced to invest in user research and the user-driven AB test that made it all happen.

This session is for anyone trying to start or grow a user research practice in an organization that is low on time, resources, and stakeholder interest.

Speakers

Friday September 24, 2021 3:00pm - 3:45pm EDT
1 - Back Bay A/B (Research)

3:00pm EDT

Two Birds, One Branch: A Strategy for Managing UX Debt and Accessibility
Every UX team is charged with improving their product experience. Every product suffers from
some amount of UX Debt and accessibility non-compliance. Very few teams are able to
prioritize their reduction of UX Debt and improvements in accessibility when their organizations
tend to prioritize new feature work above all else. In this presentation, learn about one team’s
strategy for identifying, classifying and prioritizing a backlog of UX Debt and accessibility
problems found in their product portfolio, and the methodology they defined for systematically
drawing down that backlog to reach specified OKRs for the year.


Friday September 24, 2021 3:00pm - 3:45pm EDT
3 - Independence (Strategy)

4:15pm EDT

From the Workplace to the Classroom: Teaching User Research
As the UX industry grows, more opportunities to train new generations of researchers are emerging. Experienced practitioners with full-time jobs now make up adjunct professor or instructor positions in graduate programs, bootcamps, and online learning programs. But why should UXers branch out into teaching, on top of full-time work? This panel will bring together a number of adjunct professors, lecturers, and educators in the UX domain, to help explain why.

Together we’ll review the following:

  • Backgrounds
  • How to get started
  • Overview: masters programs, certificates, guest lectures, conferences/smaller events
  • Goal setting/What does success in teaching look like?
  • Challenges & Successes
  • Overall Tips- pay, rights to content, etc.

Speakers
avatar for Grace Phang

Grace Phang

Professor, User Researcher, NYIT, Liberty Mutual
Grace Phang is a user researcher at Liberty Mutual with a passion for inclusive design, mixed methods, and leading diversity initiatives. Prior to Liberty, she worked for the Tufts spatial cognition lab, examining origami and paper engineering. With her sister, Grace co-founded a... Read More →


Friday September 24, 2021 4:15pm - 5:00pm EDT
5 - Liberty (Career)

4:15pm EDT

Designing meaningful visualizations: a case study in connecting users to their data
Information fuels decision-making and motivates action—but only if data makes sense to its users. Across many industries, customers often find themselves distanced from making informed choices when they fail to interpret data and extract relevant insights. Designers must face the challenge head-on to find the right balance of context and focus when presenting narratives with data.

This presentation will discuss a case study about a medication adherence app that grounds the research and design of data visualizations in patients’ perspectives and behaviors. Learn about user-centered methods like scenario validation, decision tree diagramming, and comprehension testing that can advance your practice and create products that use data in ways that resonate with your customers.

Speakers
avatar for Ben Elgart

Ben Elgart

User Experience Designer


Friday September 24, 2021 4:15pm - 5:00pm EDT
2 - Back Bay C/D (Design)

4:15pm EDT

Driving UX outcomes with PURE scores: One company’s journey to metrics through expert reviews
How do we know if the UX team is doing a good job? With executives obsessed with measurement and our obsession with designing great products, how can a team keep up?  Is large-scale user testing the answer, or even feasible?
 
This is the story of one team's attempt drive change through the Practical Usability Rating by Experts method (PURE) (Rohrer, et al). We have built a system around tracking usability with scores generated by PURE. The challenge is to implement, execute, and report across a broad portfolio of products and workflows aimed at our users. You will learn about our motivation for tracking usability this way, methods for adapting to this complex product environment, and our lessons learned with these tools to drive change for our users.

Speakers
avatar for Kevin Berni

Kevin Berni

User Experience Design Director, Dassault Systemes SolidWorks Corp
Kevin is Director of User Experience Design at DS SolidWorks in Waltham, MA, where he leads of team of UX Designers, Visual Designers, and User Researchers who design software used by engineers to design many of the products that we all use every day. Prior to Dassault Systemes SolidWorks... Read More →


Friday September 24, 2021 4:15pm - 5:00pm EDT
4 - Republic (Research & Panels)

4:15pm EDT

SUS Plus: Amp up your usability survey!
Many organizations use standard usability questionnaires such as the System Usability Scale (SUS) to benchmark their products’ usability and track it over time, or compare to competitors. But the SUS on its own does not tell you what or how to improve. Also, the score can be just another “so what” metric, especially to colleagues outside the user experience team who may not be as familiar with it as, say, Net Promoter Score.

Finally, answering the SUS questions is not a very compelling activity for your customers.
How can you amp up your usability survey to increase response rates, give the score context that your stakeholders will care about, and drive more action from the results? I will share a case study that helped me get buy-in for a major redesign project.

Speakers
avatar for Kirsten Robinson

Kirsten Robinson

Director of Product Design, BitSight Technologies, Inc.


Friday September 24, 2021 4:15pm - 5:00pm EDT
1 - Back Bay A/B (Research)

4:15pm EDT

Designing for Decision Support: What Product Design Leaders Need to Know About Enabling Successful Enterprise Data Analytics and Machine Learning Initiatives
In 2019, VentureBeat predicted 87%+ of data science projects won’t make it into production. Countless other studies show how large data-driven initiatives from analytics to data science and AI tend to fail at a rate of 80% or higher—despite ongoing and sizable investments in technology and data. Can product design leaders and UX professionals help fix this, particularly at the enterprise level? Your executives are worried about having an AI strategy. Data scientists worry about getting their models to be as accurate as possible, having the right data, and tons of it before they can even do anything. Where is the customer in all of this? Who exactly is the customer of a “predictive model”? How do we measure success in this context? If business value is dependent on specific users engaging successfully with a model, decision support application or data product, then teams must design these solutions around the people using them—not the data or technology. Design leaders inherently get this, but what’s unique about creating valuable data-driven products and solutions? How are traditional analytics products different than those that generate probabilistic outputs from new techniques such as machine learning? And where does data visualization fit in? If you lead UX at a large enterprise, AI as a strategy is likely on your executive roadmap. However, your executive leadership, particularly if you’re at a non-digital native company, may not even know exactly what AI is, what’s possible, and most importantly how they can leverage it to produce new customer-facing experiences, services, or products. Designer leaders and UX professionals can help, but it means looking at data as “the new pixel,” and understanding what it means to add value when working in this medium, and how UX+Data Science may become just as important as the UX+Product Management relationship.

Speakers
avatar for Brian O'Neill

Brian O'Neill

Founder, Principal, & Advisor, Designing for Analytics
Brian T. O'Neill is the founder of Designing for Analytics and a consulting product designer who helps companies create innovative ML and analytics solutions. For over 20 years, he has worked with companies including DellEMC, Global Strategy Group, Tripadvisor, Fidelity, JP Morgan... Read More →


Friday September 24, 2021 4:15pm - 5:00pm EDT
3 - Independence (Strategy)