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Mikael
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« on: January 21, 2010, 04:42:24 pm »

We have come up with a list of questions we feel important to ask in the forthcoming interviews. In this version the interview is divided into 4 (5) different topics. The topics are so far responsibilities, decision-making, evaluations and UX as a concept. The current questions are:

Responsibilities

    * Define your position inside Nokia. (Do you have any special area of responsibility?)  
    * What are the biggest challenges your job entails?
    * At what stage(s) of the development process are you involved?
    * What are the other stakeholders that have an impact on your work (affiliated departments, persons, departments to report to...etc.)
    * What kind of activities do you participate in (as a person, as unit)?

Decision-making

    * What decisions you (your department/unit) can do by yourself and what things are given? (what are the limits of your decision-making?)
    * What's the process for decision-making?
    * On what kind of aspects do you focus?
    * What impact do your decisions have on products and other projects (software development vs. product development vs. service development)
  
Evaluations

    * What kind of evaluations do you perform as a unit?
    * What is the key information you are interested in (in which not at all (limitations))?
    * Are there any common goals set for all departments or units working in a related area to your unit?
    * What about performance reviews? (How do you measure your achievements?)
    * How often are they done?
    * Do you have a set procedure you follow for evaluating?
    * So what are the specific methods you employ?

How designers/developers/marketers (in the business units) understand UX as a concept?

    * What is your understanding of UX?
    * How did you learn about UX?
    * How long have you been aware of the term UX?    
    * How do you feel about UX personally? (Do you consider UX as an add-on to usability?)
    * Is UX important for your work?
       - if yes: how has it changed your way of working? (Do you already employ UX assessment?)
       - if no: why isn't it?  
    * What role does (could) it play for your overall work?
    * Which aspects of UX do you consider relevant for your work?
    * How are UX related issues discussed in your unit?
    * Are you aware of Nokia's UX elements (Usability, Utility, Enjoyment, Social Value)?
    * What kind of needs within the UX field do you have? If any?
    * What are the situations UX knowledge could/should be used?
    * Do you feel that there is a Nokia product that is especially good/bad in UX sense? Why?
  
Goal defintion

    * Who is responsible for goal setting?
    * On what kind of data are the goals built on?
    * Does UX play a role in the goal settings of projects? If yes, are there any objectives for UX? Which things are/should be measured?

Extra
 
    * is there a person you would recommend to us, whom we should interview?  
    * Is there a suitable project we could participate in?
    * How is a product developed in Nokia?
    * What are the individual development stages?
    * How do you monitor the effects of your work on the final product?

Please state your views on these questions and propose additions if you feel we have missed something.

Lutz & Mikael
« Last Edit: January 21, 2010, 04:46:48 pm by Mikael » Logged
Virpi
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« Reply #1 on: January 21, 2010, 10:39:23 pm »

Nice set of questions!
I had to check the goal for the interviews from the project plan, and found this: "Analysis of existing Nokia development processes and understanding the product development domain in which UX tools processes can be utilized". So should we focus a bit more on the development processes, at least to find out the type of the process (e.g. agile)?  I dont know why we have to dig so deeply into decision making, achievements evaluation and goal setting. This does not mean I'm against them, I just need an explanation to understand.

Below my comments/additions bolded.

Responsibilities

    * Define your unit's position inside Nokia. (special area of responsibility?)
    * Define your position inside your unit. (What is your special area or responsibility?) 
    * What are the biggest challenges your job entails?  <Too wide? Focus.>
    * At what stage(s) of the development process are you involved?
    * Do you apply agile development process? <only for developers>
    * What are the other stakeholders that have an impact on your work (affiliated departments, persons, departments to report to...etc.) <Too wide? Focus.>
    * What kind of activities do you participate in (as a person, as unit)? <Too wide? Focus.>

Decision-making  <I don't quite see yet how this helps UXTools work, but I remember Turkka proposed to focus on this. Clarify?>

    * What product-related decisions you (your department/unit) can do by yourself and what things are given? (what are the limits of your decision-making?)
    * What's the process for decision-making?
    * On what kind of aspects do you focus in decision-making?
    * What impact do your decisions have on products and other projects (software development vs. product development vs. service development)
 
Evaluations

    * What kind of evaluations do you perform as a unit? <Too wide? Focus.>
    * What is the key information you are interested in (in which not at all (limitations))?  <Too wide? Focus.>
    * Are there any common goals set for all departments or units working in a related area to your unit?
    * What about performance reviews? (How do you measure your achievements?) <I think the latter question is better>
    * How often are they done?
    * Do you have a set procedure you follow for evaluating?
    * So what are the specific methods you employ? <For what? Focus.>

How designers/developers/marketers (in the business units) understand UX as a concept?

    * What is your understanding of UX? <Too wide? Focus.>
    * How did you learn about UX?
    * How long have you been aware of the term UX?   
    * How do you feel about UX personally? (Do you consider UX as an add-on to usability?)  <I think the latter question is better>
    * Is UX important for your work?
       - if yes: how has it changed your way of working? (Do you already employ UX assessment?)   <I think the latter question is important>
       - if no: why isn't it? 
    * What role does (could) it play for your overall work?
    * Which aspects of UX do you consider relevant for your work?
    * How are UX related issues discussed in your unit?  <Too wide? Focus.>
    * Are you aware of Nokia's UX elements (Usability, Utility, Enjoyment, Social Value)?
    * What kind of needs within the UX field do you have? If any?
    * What are the situations UX knowledge could/should be used?
    * Do you feel that there is a Nokia product that is especially good/bad in UX sense? Why? <Explain them why we ask this question>
 
Goal definition

    * Who is responsible for goal setting?  <What goals? Personal/project/product/UX work? Focus.>
    * On what kind of data are the goals built on?
    * Does UX play a role in the goal settings of projects? If yes, are there any objectives for UX? Which things are/should be measured?

Extra
 
    * is there a person you would recommend to us, whom we should interview? 
    * Is there a suitable project we could participate in?
<I think the following ones are important, wonder why they are here?>
    * How is a product developed in Nokia? <Too wide? Focus.>
    * What are the main phases in product development
    * How do you monitor the effects of your work on the final product?
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Lutz
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« Reply #2 on: January 22, 2010, 02:18:05 pm »

Thank you Virpi for the great comments and additions! I guess this is a good start for making use of this platform as a forum for discussions.

In the following I want to present my views on the matter and respond to some questions that came up:
 
Regarding the set of questions, they were generated in a rather brainstorming manner and do not claim to be either complete or thoroughly elaborated so that's why it is brilliant to have already some feedback. Some of the questions which are marked as <too wide> need certainly more focus and have to be regarded as a kind of lead question or topic that requires more focused follow-up questions. Therefore it is great to gather further comments and proposals for refining the questions the following days.

Concerning the decision making (which probably applies only to certain people we are going to interview) I hope that these questions can help us to better understand what kind of information is needed and relevant, not only from a UX perspective, in order to understand what role, weighting UX related issues might have  and how they could contribute to these decision making processes (also in respect to what kind of data/results we have to produce to meet those peoples needs).
The goal defintion part from my point of view is relevant from the integration perspective. If we want to integrate UX-Tools in a product development process I feel we also have to understand how and by whom (managment, marketing, R&D, design?) project specific goals are defined in order to integrate and derive UX specific targets to and from those descriptions.
The achievement part mainly refers to monitoring the effect of relevant decisions within the product development (which might become important from a UX perspective).

I fully agree that we have to focus and find out more about the product development processes itself in Nokia. Especially as an outsider it is hard to imagine what units are typically involved, how they collaborate and what kind of projects are treated in what way.
Some information however could prove to be useful already prior to the interviews (if available) in order to address the right persons, e.g if there is something like an organisational map to gain an overview about the individual stages a project has to pass in a product development lifecycle in Nokia?
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Virpi
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« Reply #3 on: January 25, 2010, 08:21:49 pm »

Thanks for the reply, Lutz! It all makes sense.

For public information on Nokia's structure, you can check http://www.nokia.com/about-nokia/company/structure.

Virpi
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Mikael
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« Reply #4 on: January 26, 2010, 06:29:09 pm »

We have taken into account the feedback and have revised the questions. The questions in parentheses are meant to further define the area of interest. We separated some more general user-centered questions from UX-related ones and tried to give a clearer focus on some previously commented issues.

Responsibilities (used for orientation and warm-up in order to get a description of the development context)

    - Define your unit's position inside Nokia. (Special area of responsibility?)
    - Define your position inside your unit. (What is your special area or responsibility?)
    - What are the main phases in product development?
    - What kind of projects do you participate in?
    - Describe the type of development processes your projects are involved in?
    - What process models are applied on those projects?
    - At what stage(s) of the development process are you involved?
    - What are the other stakeholders that have a direct impact on your work (affiliated departments, persons, departments to report to...etc.)
    - What kind of development-related activities do you participate in (as a person, as unit)?

Extras:
    - Do you apply agile development process? (only for developers)



Decision-making (Probing out possible limitations for the integration of UX processes)

    - What development-related decisions you (your department/unit) can do by yourself and what things are given? (what are the limits of your decision-making?)
    - What's the process for decision-making?
    - On what kind of aspects do you focus in decision-making?
    - What impact do your decisions have on products and other projects (software development vs. product development vs. service development)
  

Evaluations

    - What kind of evaluation methods do you perform on the products* the unit produces?

*products meaning here the kind of results the unit produces, which can be services, software, products, prototypes, etc.

    - What is the key information you are interested in (in relation to the previous question)?
    - Are there any common goals set for all departments or units working in a related area to your unit?
    - How do you monitor your achievements? (not meaning personal achievements)
    - How often it is done?
    - Are evaluations done inside the workgroup/unit or are personnel from some other unit needed?
        If inside the unit
        - Do you have a set procedure you follow for evaluating?
        - What are the specific methods you employ?
    - How do you monitor the effects of your work on the final product?

How designers/developers/marketers (in the business units) understand UX as a concept?

    - Do you feel that there is a Nokia product that is regarded especially good or bad in the eyes of the user? Why?
    - What kind of a role do the users play on your line of work?
    - What information about the user do you consider relevant for your work?
    - How are user-related issues discussed in your unit?
    - Are you familiar with the term User Experience?  

Set for those familiar with the concept of UX

    - What is your understanding of UX?
    - How did you learn about UX?
    - How long have you been aware of the term UX?    
    - Do you consider UX as an add-on to usability?
    - Is UX important for your work?
       - if yes: Do you already employ UX assessment?
       - if no: why isn't it?  
    - Which aspects of UX do you consider relevant for your work?
    - Are you aware of Nokia's UX elements (Usability, Utility, Enjoyment, Social Value)?
    - What kind of needs within the UX field do you have? If any?
    - What are the situations UX knowledge could/should be used?
  
Goal definition

    - Who is responsible for goal setting for the projects?
    - On what kind of data are the goals built on?
    - How is UX considered in the goal settings of projects? If yes, are there any objectives for UX? Which things are/should be measured?

Extra
 
    - is there a person you would recommend to us, whom we should interview? (e.g. in a situation where evaluations are not done inside the unit)
    - Is there a suitable project we could participate in?

« Last Edit: January 26, 2010, 06:36:06 pm by Mikael » Logged
Virpi
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« Reply #5 on: January 27, 2010, 09:14:33 am »

Thanks Mikael!

I think the questions are in a good shape now for the first interview; you can then give more explanations if the interviewee does not know how to answer, and adjust the questions on the way.

Have you already thought about the analysis phase? Something more concrete than the talk might help the analysis: drawings, tables, even questionnaires? I'm just worried that if you run up to 10 interviews, you will have the knowledge in your head, but how you will be able to disseminate the results to the rest of the team?

  Virpi
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Jaakko
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« Reply #6 on: February 01, 2010, 08:53:17 am »

Thank you all for the good inital work with the questions!

A few additional questions worth asking from my perspective would also be:
-- To what extent can a special problem area of user experience/usability act as a key starting point of a new product development project at Nokia (or in your work)?
-- To what extent do you identify key problem/development areas of user experience/usability (a) by surveying users/consumers in general vs. (b) studying the strengths of competitors' products vis-a-vis your own ones specifically.
-- How do you manage consumers' expectations of the user experience of your products? (E.g. X is a feature where the consumer can/should expect a wow experience vs. Y is a basic hygiene feature that just needs to be in order even if we don't claim to provide any wow experience concerning Y)
-- Does consumer feedback about a product soon after market launch get integrated into development of improved version of the product (in portfolio/versioning management)?
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Virpi
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« Reply #7 on: February 01, 2010, 05:45:21 pm »

Hyviä kysymyksiä, kannatan niiden lisäämistä joukkoon!

Virpi
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Lutz
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« Reply #8 on: February 01, 2010, 06:14:20 pm »

Thank you Virpi and Jaakko for the swift feedback.

We have now been refining the structure of the questions and also included Jaakko's proposals to the list.
In addition we have made the interview lead and a plan for analyzing the results.

We believe that the questions are on a good level now so that we can conduct a pilot interview if you don't have any further proposals for improvement.
We realize that the amount of questions is rather large and we acknowledge that during the interview we most likely have to adapt the questions to meet our time limits.

As we are planning to conduct the pilot interview after the workshop on Tuesday 9th of February, we will bring the signed NDAs to NRC.

Below the refined questions:

Responsibilities (orientating questions and a warm-up, meant to be run through quickly and in order to get a description of the development context)

- Define your unit's position inside Nokia. (Special area of responsibility?)
- Define your position inside your unit. (What is your special area or responsibility?)
- What kind of projects do you participate in?
- What are the main phases in product development? (From your standpoint)
- What process models are applied on those projects?
- At what stage(s) of the development process are you involved?
- Describe the types of processes/activities that are used in your projects?
- What are the other stakeholders that have a direct impact on your work (affiliated departments, persons, departments to report to...etc.)

Extras:
- Do you apply agile development process? (only for developers)


Decision-making and goal setting (Probing out possible limitations for the integration of UX processes)

- What's the process for decision-making?
- On what kind of aspects do you focus in decision-making?
- What impact do your decisions have on products and other projects (software    development vs. product development vs. service development)
- What development-related decisions you (your department/unit) can do by yourself and what things are given? (what are the limits of your decision-making?)
- Who is responsible for goal setting for the projects?
- On what kind of data are the goals built on?
- To what extent do you identify key problem/development areas of user experience/usability (a) by surveying users/consumers in general vs. (b) studying the strengths of competitors' products vis-a-vis your own ones specifically. (where applicable)


Evaluations

- What kind of evaluation methods do you perform on the products* the unit produces? (*products meaning here the kind of results the unit produces, which can be services, software, products, prototypes, etc.)
- What is the key information you are interested in (in relation to the previous question)?
- Are there any common goals set for all departments or units working in a related area to your unit?
- How do you monitor your achievements? (not meaning personal achievements)
- Are evaluations done inside the workgroup/unit or are personnel from some other unit needed?
        If inside the unit
        - Do you have a set procedure you follow for evaluating?
        - What are the specific methods you employ?
- How do you monitor the effects of your work on the final product?
- Does consumer feedback about a product soon after market launch get integrated into development of improved version of the product (in portfolio/versioning management)?


How designers/developers/marketers (in the business units) understand UX as a concept?

- Do you feel that there is a Nokia product that is regarded especially good or bad in the eyes of the user? Why?
- What kind of a role do the users play on your line of work?
- What information about the user do you consider relevant for your work?
- How are user-related issues discussed in your unit?
- Are you familiar with the term User Experience?   

Set for those familiar with the concept of UX

- What is your understanding of UX?
- How did you learn about UX?
- How long have you been aware of the term UX?   
- How do you feel about UX personally? (Do you consider UX as an add-on to usability?)
- How is UX considered in the goal settings of projects? If yes, are there any objectives for UX? Which things are/should be measured?
- Is UX important for your work?
       - if yes: how has it changed your way of working? (Do you already employ UX assessment?)
       - if no: why isn't it?   
- Which aspects of UX do you consider relevant for your work?
- To what extent can a special problem area of user experience/usability act as a key starting point of a new product development project at Nokia (or in your work)?
- Are you aware of Nokia's UX elements (Usability, Utility, Enjoyment, Social Value)?
- How do you manage consumers' expectations of the user experience of your products? (E.g. X is a feature where the consumer can/should expect a wow experience vs. Y is a basic hygiene feature that just needs to be in order even if we don't claim to provide any wow experience concerning Y)
- What kind of needs within the UX field do you have? If any?
- What are the situations UX knowledge could/should be used?
   
Extra
 
- is there a person you would recommend to us, whom we should interview? (e.g. in a situation where evaluations are not done inside the unit)
- Is there a suitable project we could participate in?



Data Analysis

The individual interviews will be conducted in pairs by UX tools researchers. The interviews will be audio recorded, if the interviewee agrees, and complemented by written notes. Subsequent to the interviews, relevant information will be filtered out and partially transcripted. The obtained data will be qualitatively and if applicable quantitatively analyzed.
The results of the analysis will be shared among the project members in the form of slides and a workshop presentation.



Interview lead:

Dear XY,

We have selected you as a potential interviewee in the context of the UX Tools (User Experience Tools) project.

UX Tools is a Nokia Research Center (NRC) funded project which is conducted in collaboration with Aalto University. The UX Tools project aims at creating a set of tools and methods to assist Nokia in integrating User Experience into development processes. From NRC side the responsible head of the project is Principal Scientist Virpi Roto.
The purpose of the interview is to gain an understanding of current Nokia product development processes and methods. We are especially interested in the assessment of user related issues and their impacts on the whole development field.

Topics to be covered will be responsibilities concerning product or service development, decisions factors, evaluation methodologies, goal definition and User Experience. The interview will take approximately 1-2 hours and will be conducted in English. You will be interviewed by either one or two UX Tools project researchers.

The results of the interview will be treated as confidential. The interviewers work under permission of Nokia and have signed a non-disclosure agreement.

If you are willing to participate we would kindly ask you to propose some dates that will suit you the best. If you have any questions please contact...xy



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Virpi
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« Reply #9 on: February 02, 2010, 01:24:51 pm »

Thanks! Yes, there are plenty of questions, so you will have to select the most important ones for each interviewee. I can prioritize the questions from my perspective, but I dont know how helpful that would be.

How many interviews are you targeting at?

About the interview lead, I guess it will be used in the invitation email when recruiting the interviewees? If so, I would like to emphasize the confidentiality aspects before explaining the content. I did also some changes to make this sound more convincing (I hope; I bolded the text I was not sure about):

"Dear XY,

We have selected you as a potential interviewee for the following purpose:

User Experience (UX) Tools is a winner project from Nokia's open call for research projects. It is funded by Nokia Research Center (NRC) and conducted in collaboration with Aalto University. The UX Tools project aims at creating a set of methods and techniques to assist Nokia in ensuring great User Experience during product development. From NRC side the responsible head of the project is Virpi Roto (Principal Scientist, UX).

To be able to innovate new UX design and evaluation methods that benefit Nokia, the team must understand the ways of working in this company. To gain this understanding, we will conduct interviews with ~10 key people from different Nokia units.

Naturally, the results of the interviews will be treated as confidential. The interviewers work under the permission of Nokia and all team members have signed non-disclosure agreements.

We are especially interested in the assessment of user related issues and their impacts on the whole development field.

Topics to be covered in this interview will be
- responsibilities concerning product or service development,
- decision making process during product design
- design and evaluation methods in use

- goal definition
- User Experience in general

The interview will take approximately 1-2 hours and will be conducted in English. You will be interviewed by two UX Tools project researchers.

If you are willing to participate we would kindly ask you to propose some dates in February that will suit you the best. If you have any questions on the interview content or potential interviewees, please contact Virpi Roto. For questions on the interview scheduling, please contact Lutz Gegner.


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Lutz
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« Reply #10 on: February 04, 2010, 01:57:02 pm »

Thanks for the comments and especially for the interview lead. It sounds so much better and convincing now. It will be used in the invitation for recruiting the interviewees.

We plan to interview approximately 10 people. So far we have 5 "friendly" people that we are planning to contact.

These are the contacts we have:

- Marko Ahtisaari, (Design)
- Anne Kaikkonen, (Usability)
- Harri Kiljander, (User Interface R&D Linux platform?)
- Anita Navaratnam, (Solutions marketing)
- Janne Jalkanen, (Head of Early Technology Validation)

If you have some additional suggestions for people that we definitely should interview, we would be more than happy to include them in our list.

Our plan is to start with Anita Navaratnam as a pilot interview as soon as possible. 
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Virpi
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« Reply #11 on: February 08, 2010, 09:05:49 am »

I have now contacted 4 other interviewee candidates, with a slightly clarified invitation text (below). With most managers, it is quite impossible to get 2 hours of their time to this interview, so we should ask either 1 or 1.5 hours. Lutz, I added your taik.fi address as the contact; I hope it still works?

See you tomorrow!

       Virpi

------------

<I added a short personalized invitation here, mentioning also the potential benefit for the interviewee's team.>

User Experience (UX) Tools project is a winner of Nokia's open call for research projects. It is funded by Nokia Research Center (NRC) and conducted in collaboration with Aalto University. The UX Tools project aims at creating a set of methods and techniques to assist Nokia in ensuring great User Experience during product development. From NRC side the responsible head of the project is Virpi Roto.

To be able to innovate new UX design and evaluation methods that benefit Nokia, the team must understand the ways of working in this company. To gain this understanding, we will conduct interviews with ~10 key people from different Nokia units.

Naturally, the results of the interviews will be treated as confidential. The interviewers work under the permission of Nokia and all team members have signed non-disclosure agreements.

We are especially interested in the assessment of user related issues and their impacts on the whole development field.

Topics to be covered in this interview will be
- responsibilities concerning product or service development,
- decision making process during product design
- design and evaluation methods in use
- goal definition
- User Experience in general

The interview will take approximately 1.5 hours and will be conducted in English. You will be interviewed by two UX Tools project researchers.

If you are willing to participate we would kindly ask you to propose some dates in February that will suit you the best; Lutz Gegner is your contact for interview scheduling (lutz.gegner@taik.fi). If you have any questions on the interview content or other potential interviewees, please contact Virpi Roto (virpi.roto@nokia.com).
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