In the first of a new series of blogs, we speak directly to the team here at Mando and understand more about their role and how they help us to engineer change. First up it’s Lead UX at Mando – Alex Holloway

Briefly explain your role as ‘Lead UX Consultant’ at Mando

"My role is ensuring that the products that we design are ultimately focused on the needs of users and the goals set by our clients.

"To ensure that this is the case throughout the entire product development, I am involved in every step of the process. Primarily I look at personas and journey mapping, wireframes, discovery workshops, and prototype testing.

"My work deciphers the entire end-to-end journey the user has with the product, and includes identifying new opportunities for both the product and the client."

What are the main benefits to improving UX and putting it front and centre of a digital strategy?

"UX is based on listening to what customers need and creating a product that fulfils those needs. By doing this you create a product that puts its users first and paves the way for positive experiences.

"For our clients this directly links to positive business outcomes."

What are the most common challenges that you have had to overcome in your role?

"At university I studied Biochemistry and because I didn't start my role in design or computing like many individuals who work in UX, this was quite a large barrier for me getting my first position in UX.

"That being said, my dissertation was in data genotype sequencing I got an interview with Mando for a half data analysis and half UX role. You could say my data side got me my interview and my passion for UX got me the job."

What aspects of UX are particularly high on a clients’ priority list in 2022?

"Accessibility, Accessibility, Accessibility.

"You wouldn't design a building that 15% of users couldn't access, so why would you build a website that 15% of users couldn't effectively interact with.

When planning a project are there any ‘quick wins’ that can lead to instant improvements in UX?

"This is more of a mindset switch. We must take a step back when addressing the customer feedback and insights and think what is causing them to feel/react in that way. If one person thinks something is a problem, then it’s likely others will too.

"A good example is that if a user complains that the search feature on a site isn't delivering a good experience, then you have to think about the changes you could make. Instead of thinking about buying a new search tool, think why they might be using the search feature.

"Is it because the MegaNav isn't giving them directions to where they want to go, and does the ordering needs addressing?

"It’s also important to look at what are people searching for and review this data. Ask yourself questions like:

  • Are there terms which are regularly being searched for, that you don't currently have on the site?
  • Is there a list of missed customer types and audiences that you need to cater for?
  • Does the language used in searches get reflected in the MegaNav and other sign posting around the site?

"By taking one comment or one area of the site and really investigating it and fleshing it out can lead to a lot of interesting (and sometimes free) improvements."

What should clients be looking to improve in the future and how can they achieve this? (New metrics to consider, tools to use etc.)

"We always want to be improving how we can collect feedback from users whether that is by interviews, surveys, or A/B testing. Small iterations and changes to products prevents the need for big overhauls of systems. As long as we use a customer’s set of needs as the ‘North Star’, we can’t go wrong."

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