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Day 5: Testing

During the entire sprint, we work towards a whole day of tests which get us feedback on our solution from real users. This happens on day 5 - the final day of the sprint.

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Setup

A good user study requires a good setup. You will need 2 rooms – one for the actual interviews, and another for the team to watch a livestream of the interviews. Make sure to also save a recording of the screen and audio for synthesis later on.

Interviews

It’s time for the moment for which you’ve been working your butts off the whole week. Begin every interview by welcoming the interviewee and easing them into a light conversation and then slowly transition into questions about the product or service you are about to test. Next, introduce the user to the prototype and explain how it might have limited functionality. Don’t forget to add that the designer of the prototype is not present, and ask the user to think out loud without fear of hurting any feelings. Finally, take the user through the prototype by asking her to do a series of tasks and carefully observe the points of friction. It’s ok to deviate a bit from the script, but don’t do it too often and be careful of asking leading questions. Close the interview with a quick debrief that gives the user a chance to voice her final thoughts about the prototype.

Live synthesis

In the observation room, find a whiteboard (or a shared spreadsheet) and divide it into 3 columns with titles:

What worked very well and needs little or no improvement?
What worked reasonably well and needs more work?
What did not work and might need a lot of work?

Alongside each interview, everyone takes notes and at the end of the interview adds them to the relevant column. Continue this exercise for all the 5 interviews, and then clean up the notes by removing duplicates.

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Closure Spend an hour discussing the observations as a team. Talk about ‘what worked well’, ‘what worked reasonably well’ and ‘what did not work at all’. Think about your next steps, pat each other on the back, and get some beers to celebrate your new found ability to put your ideas in front of your customers in a matter of a week.

Product Marathon