I am an experienced UX researcher, passionate about the scientific/research side of User Experience where the psychological and physiological aspects of design affect user behaviour. I’ve spent the last 7 years in senior UX positions and am comfortable leading teams, and in a hands-on capacity creating UX deliverables.
- End to end UX – Discovery through to launch and beyond, including non-digital territory
- Planning and analysing quantitative studies to find out what the problems are
- Iterative user research and testing to determine why the problems are happening
- Axure RP – building highly interactive prototypes to look at how we can solve our problems
- Agile project management methodology
- UX strategy and process development
- Team leadership, mentoring and ensuring that UX is part of all processes from the start
- Diary studies
- Card sorts
- Tree tests
- Unmoderated remote testing
- Moderated testing (Remote and lab based)
- Guerrilla testing
User Researcher – DWP Digital: Universal Credit
(November 2021 – Present)
I was contracted to DWP to work on the Move to Universal Credit service but started with DWP working on a product for agents to calculate Universal Credit payments for claimants when there were extraordinary circumstances.
Once the Universal Credit programme started, I moved over to become the User Researcher responsible for research with claimants for the Move to UC programme. I work in a team of around 12 comprising of product managers, content designers, interaction designers, BAs and data scientists. My team is part of a wider portfolio team and I collaborate with 1 other researcher who covers internal users. Generally, we work together in both areas when necessary.
Move to UC is a large, high profile programme involving sending letters to around 2.9 million households telling them that their existing benefits are ending and that they need to make a claim for Universal Credit. The earliest testable service for this launched on the 9th May and we are now starting to iterate as different cohorts come into scope.
Typically, my time is spent:
- Running planning workshops to ensure that we understand what we want to learn from research
- Planning the research we are likely to need over the next month or 2
- Conducting research:
- Remote moderated sessions
- Lab based sessions
- Playback sessions with various stakeholders showing the research findings
- Working with data scientists to identify potential areas that need further research
- Ensuring that we have evidence based recommendations to support a user centred approach
- Attending meetings to contribute to an Agile approach
UX Researcher – GSK
(July 2021 – December 2021)
I was mainly responsible for helping GSK develop a much more robust strategy for research on a global basis. This involved changing the entire culture of the organisation from looking at business needs and being very solution focused to looking at user needs and becoming more problem focused. I did this by rolling out a design thinking methodology. I ran this as a pilot to help improve the lives of 25,000 sales reps globally. Initially, this involved diary studies in Japan, China, the US and UK. I then set up workshops to refine problem statements and start to ideate on possible solutions. This exercise will form a blueprint for the whole organization in over 100 markets.
I was also responsible for conducting and managing the quant and qual research across most of the GSK digital landscape but mainly focused on GSKpro, a portal for health care professionals to access information about GSK products. Some of this, I did myself using tools like usertesting.com and some involved managing relationships with external suppliers. This was always going to be a short term contract as their goal was to recruit permanent staff
User Experience Consultant – National Trust
(December 2017 – July 2021)
I’m currently leading the research on a £3.75m project to replace the website and CMS for the National Trust. This has been an 18 month phase in the project and is due to end in the new year. At this point, there is a desire to replace contractors with permanent staff.
National Trust is a product focused, Agile environment and I’m solely responsible for the UX research on several different existing products, and all new products. When I started, I was one of 5 UXers. 4 were permanent with me as a contractor. At the moment, I am the only one left after redundancies were made in the summe.
My role at the National Trust is focused on user research using quantitative data and qualitative research, defining solutions and then validating/tuning those solutions through various usability testing exercises using prototypes that I build in Axure.
We have an internal insights team so I work with them to plan quantitative studies so that we always start with data. I then turn the data into something more user-focused so that we explore trhe problems we’re trying to solve before we start looking at solutions.
Once I have completed the research, I then present this back to stakeholders (internal clients, product managers, developers, UI designers, etc.) to create user stories that can be actioned as part of a project or as part of a product enhancement cycle.
My work covers everything from looking at micro-interactions in one module of one page to more complex, transactional user journeys such as joining and donating for members of the public, for example.
Digital Strategy Director – Ogilvy Healthworld
(January 2017 – November 2017)
Ogilvy Healthworld is part of the WPP Health and Wellness network, specialising in health behaviour change for HCPs and patients/consumers for clients across the world. Clients I worked with personally included Roche, Pfizer, Janssen, Boehringer Ingelheim, GSK, Lilly and AstraZeneca.
Ogilvy has a tried and tested philosophy for customer engagement which is strong on UX so I promoted the use of this across any projects that I was involved with.
I managed a team of digital strategists covering:
- User Experience
- Engagement strategy
- Content planning
- Social strategy
- Marketing automation
- Insight and Research
- Learning for Health
I spent around 75% of my time in a hands-on capacity which involved any of the areas in this list but I mainly specialised in UX in terms of the deliverables I personally created. I delivered everything from moderating/observing lab-based usability testing sessions all over Europe through to creating highly functional prototypes and working with creative and development teams to see products through to launch and beyond.
The other 25% of my time was spent managing my team, acting in a consultative role and developing more robust processes to ensure that User Experience was central to projects from the outset and continued to be part of the strategic roadmap after the projects were completed.
I’m a confident communicator, able to influence stakeholders at all levels and comfortable telling stories to illustrate technical concepts to non-technical people.
The range of projects that I worked on was huge. From apps, training platforms and e-commerce websites to planning interactive digital experiences for visitors to congress events.
My biggest achievement here was as part of a team where we won a global award for an HCP education programme which carried a prize of $10,000. I was also involved in the UX and digital strategy for what will be one of the highest profile changes in terms of a prescription medication shifting to over-the-counter and e-commerce supply.
Head of User Experience – OgilvyOne Business
(June 2014 – December 2016)
OgilvyOne Business is one of the largest digital B2B marketing agencies in the UK with a fantastic portfolio of instantly recognisable clients including MasterCard, Vodafone, Nokia, Inmarsat, BT, UPS and many others. My role was managing a multi-disciplinary team in an agile environment to ensure that the assets we delivered to clients were of the highest standard. Projects ranged from campaign builds such as microsites up to cross platform solutions to support omni and multi-channel experiences.
Achievements and responsibilities:
- Day to day running of the UX team including daily stand-ups with the design team, working alongside developers and ensuring that all projects adhere to best practice principles in terms of UX/CX
- Creating UX deliverables such as personas, user journeys, simple wireframes and interactive prototypes, and providing supporting documentation to communicate the rationale for any recommendations along with the risks of not following best practice
- Content strategies, planning and messaging
- Requirements gathering – business and user
- Supporting/leading pitches and customer workshops
- User testing specifications and discussion guides
- Won 4 awards for the work I did or the contribution I made to projects for various clients
- Heading the strategic services team:
- Search Engine Marketing
- Email Marketing and Social Listening
- Marketing Automation
- Digital Planning
- User Experience
User Experience Lead – Gulf Talent
(June 2013 – January 2014)
Gulf Talent is one of the largest recruitment portals in the Middle East. Their web site has around 8,000 companies and 4,000,000 candidates registered and gets 1.5 to 2 million unique visits per month.
We followed a strict agile process at Gulf Talent running 2 week sprints. I joined when a new office was opened in London and was involved in setting up the initial timing of the sprints from planning and estimation through to UAT and launch.
Achievements and responsibilities:
- Responsible for all UX assets to redesign and rebuild gulftalent.com
- Split time between London and Dubai
- Managing Business Analysts based in Dubai working on business and user requirements
- Facilitating focus group and user workshops
- Managing the relationship with external suppliers
- User testing
- User research – over the phone and getting out on the streets in Dubai with the business analysts to interview random members of the public on brand awareness and use cases of gulftalent.com
- HND Computer Science and Electronics
- GCSEs, grade A-C: Maths, English, Biology, Physics, Chemistry and Geography
I have a 3 daughters and 2 step-sons so family plays a big part in life outside work. When I do get the odd minute to myself, I can be found in any one of the following positions:
- Soldering iron in one hand and a Raspberry Pi or similar in the other or learning Python to build that “thing” I’ve been talking about that will take the world by storm
- Tinkering with one of the 60 or so home automation devices I have when they’re not being very “smart”
- Cursing my 3D printers – I’ve spent many hours and more than it’s worth modifying it. I’m happy to say that it’s now almost as good as it was straight out of the box
- Learning Spanish… very slowly. We have a house in Spain in a town where I think I’ve met one person who speaks English so this is an imperative