Do, Learn, Enjoy. A full day of awesome UX workshops.
On Friday 28th April I headed over to Leeds to attend NUX Camp 2017 at The Rose Bowl (part of Leeds Beckett University). The venue itself was impressive and clear to see why the university call it their “flagship development and a landmark for the city of Leeds”.
After arriving early and doing a little work beforehand, registration opened at 9am where you would pick up your lanyard and choose the workshops you wanted to attend. It was first-come first-served with limited places, with colour coded wristbands handed out to mark your choices.
The first session of the day for me was “And you didn’t invent sex, either: content practices for today’s user needs” by Rahel Anne Bailie (@rahelab). To summarise the workshop, Rahel noted:
The cheeky title for this workshop is a nod to each generation that thinks it has invented sex, and hates to think of the generation that spawned them, and the previous generations who got the practice down pat. This workshop is a good introduction to the rich publishing history from which to draw on for editorial practices, rich processes from relevant fields, and current technical aspects to add to the mix.
During this workshop Rahel walked us through a brief history of publishing and reiterated the 4C’s:
Before discussing the content lifecycle (Analyse > Collect > Manage > Publish) and omnichannel marketing.
Throughout the workshop we took part in various exercises such as card-sorting the content lifecycle, or another where we chose a product or service and had to determine the types of content required for the marketing of it, and where (if any) there was content crossover etc. It was interesting to see how many times the same piece of content can be reused and the importance of being able to manage that content in a single place.
The key takeaway from all of this was that content should ideally be created once, delivered anywhere (CODA; for short).
The slides from the day aren’t online, but you can view Rahel’s presentation from Adobe DITA World 2017 where she gave a similar talk.
Breaking for lunch – where there was a vast choice of sandwiches – there was plenty of time for networking and discussions about the morning before we headed off for our second workshop choice. For me this was “User experience design for Travel, Tourism and Hospitality industries” by Chris Rourke (@UserVision). Summarised by Chris, he said:
The travel sector is changing rapidly and so are customers’ expectations. In this workshop Chris will first give an overview of why travel is such a challenge and the key design principles to support customers as they discover and book travel and hospitality. He’ll draw on examples of innovative, compelling and intuitive ways of presenting travel & leisure information online.
In the first half of the workshop we learned more about the psychology of booking online and important of images and reassurance factors such as reviews/ratings. After discussing examples of sites that do this well for accommodation (most people reference Booking.com which is a personal favourite of mine and gets used a lot for personal trips away!) we looked at complications involved when flights are added into the mix, with the likes of Skyscanner, Hipmunk, and momondo all receiving notable mentions for their differing approaches.
For the second part of the workshop we moved onto two interactive exercises, split into 2 groups of 4 tables. One group analysed and created mock user journeys for Goldcar – which we would later test out on somebody from another table – while the other group discussed the creation of a new cruise brand aimed at younger people, where interview questions were put together to be trialled on someone from a different table (this was me; which wasn’t the most helpful as a cruise is my worst nightmare).
Overall takeaways from this session were the importance of varied user testing (never make assumptions) and how much of a difference imagery and reinforcement factors (i.e. ratings and reviews) make to the booking process.