In developing the previous iterations of our products, we had taken a much more structured approach to managing the user experience. This was driven by our Product Manager at the time, who immersed himself in the subject, and created a simple, but powerful, framework which we could share and use within the team.
This approach was so successful that we felt that we felt it would be valuable for the new Product Development team to develop a better understanding as a group.
To achieve this, we turned to a local provider of digital skills training, CodeClan. I met the CodeClan team at the New Start Scotland Expo 2018 event in Glasgow, back in November 2018. Their short course on UX Design Fundamentals felt like a perfect fit for us, and we subsequently enrolled in the next scheduled session. This took place in Edinburgh in February, and the early signs are that this will prove to be a successful move!
The course was delivered by Wojtek Kutyla, an experienced UX practitioner, whose engaging and inclusive style soon had the entire group participating! We covered lots of interesting ground over the 3 days, and I certainly feel better-equipped to deal with the UX challenges we’ll face as we continue our product development journey. This starts as early as next week as we look to recruit a Lead Product Designer to take hands-on ownership of UX/UI Design for our team!
For the moment, I can certainly recommend both CodeClan and Wojtek to anyone looking to upskill either themselves or their team.
My thoughts on the recent #LuminaryMeetup at #Qlik HQ, our subsequent #UserDiscovery session back at #WebhelpUK, the #QlikLuminary program and the #QlikCommunity re-launch!
Qlik Luminary Meetup
If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a thousand times – the #QlikLuminary group is an amazing group of people, and it’s a privilege to be in their company. The majority of the time, with a few notable exceptions (including, but not limited to, #Qonnections and #QlikDevGroup meetings) the company is virtual, of course. However, the annual #LuminaryMeetup in Lund changes that significantly – for a couple of days, and nights, many of us are together – and we are together with Qlik. We’ve joked previously about the collective noun for Luminaries, but it now seems sensible to go with ‘bundle’, given the content of the Qlik Sense November 2018 release! This year, the bundle reached 30! It is a full-on couple of days, brimming with content, debate and forthright discussion. There is something to be taken from every session, every topic and every interaction. I enjoyed this year’s Meetup immensely! There is an excellent write-up of some of the details – with more pictures! – on the Qlik Blog.
During Day 2 of the #LuminaryMeetup, we took part in a user discovery workshop session with Qlik Research & Usability team members. In addition to the experience of simply being able to collaborate with fellow Luminaries and Qlik colleagues, we took some genuine inspiration from this session back to our own ‘Discovery Lab’ in Falkirk, Scotland. The GCS Product Development team’s latest product will make our workforce scheduling, incentive scheme and payroll processing data visible to each individual advisor and team leader. We felt that getting a deep understanding of how this population would consume, understand and navigate this data would be crucial to the product’s success. We also thought that an interactive session would help us to better gauge the level of awareness – actually, the Data Literacy – of this audience, specifically with respect to this data and the relevant business processes. Long story short – it was a great success! We had four highly engaged and enthusiastic, cross-departmental groups who came up with some excellent suggestions, commentary and even designs! Afterwards, one delegate told me, “It was exciting. I’m excited. I can’t wait to see what the final product will look like!”. “Me too!”, I grinned from ear to ear, “Me too!”.
Becoming a Qlik Luminary
So, why should you apply to be a Qlik Luminary?
Qlik’s own introduction at Qlik Luminary Program gives a collection of Luminary benefits and characteristics – it also contains links to the current Qlik Luminary Class of 2018, and to the 2019 Qlik Luminary Application Form.
However, if you’ve read this far – or if, you’ve read any of my earlier blogs, including my recent series on Qonnections 2018 – then hopefully you’ve got a flavour of the personal and professional positives I’ve taken from a range of fantastic experiences over the last two years.
But don’t just take my word for it: look through Qlik Community (newly relaunched this week, looking and feeling better than ever, by the way!) and review the quality and volume of content authored by this group; or search for #QlikLuminary on Twitter to find help, snippets and signposts to all kinds of useful resources.
Then, ask yourself, “Why would I NOT want to be part of the Qlik Luminary Program?”. Whatever you decide, don’t hang about – applications close on 30th November 2018.