We work and live in an extraordinary age of connectedness. The products that we create communicate experiences that form the basis of our relationship to them, and ultimately to their success. As we move toward more agile processes, with an emphasis on shipping products to market, how do we structure teams to practice in a connected, software-and-services age?
Peter will address the shortcomings of typical product management, the opportunity that experience-driven thinking provides, and new organizational structures to support products that focus on the experience. He’ll also share stories of experience-driven success.
Peter Merholz is an experience design and product management executive with 20 years experience across a broad range of digital media. In 2016 he co-wrote, with Kristin Skinner, Org Design for Design Orgs, the first book to address building and managing effective in-house design teams.
In 2001, Peter co-founded Adaptive Path, perhaps the world’s premier firm dedicated to user experience. Since leaving Adaptive Path in 2011, he’s been a design and product executive, and has recently embarked on a consulting, coaching, and training practice around matters of design organizations and design leadership.
In 1999, Peter coined the word “blog.” Really. In the OED and everything.
Arq Group, previously Melbourne IT Group, is Australia’s leading digital solutions partner. Arq Group is the dynamic space for smart thinkers. Creating unforgettable experiences, solving complex challenges and providing seamless, end-to-end solutions – from design thinking to customer solutions, leading mobile, cloud and analytical insights, digital marketing to web design – Arq Group powers the growth of businesses, big and small.
This month’s IxDASyd meetup is focussing on the role of design in an organisation. To kick the evening off, Melanie Hambarsoomian will be discussing the relationship and transition modes between UX and Product Manager/Owner. Many are making that transition and Melanie asks what it means for design, specifically, and the oganisation more generally. Following that, Kate Towsey is bringing her years of insights as a “researcher of user researchers” to share the opportunities and challenges of the emerging field of Research Ops.
Kate Towsey: The State of ResearchOps – More Than Just Theory
Over the past decade, user research has matured significantly. It’s
increasingly more common for large organisations to have dozens of
people doing user research, whether as part of a dedicated team of
researchers or other design roles. Growing team sizes and increasing
organisational demand has meant that the pressures placed on people
doing research have grown too. To meet demand and be efficient,
impactful, compliant (and happy, lest we forget), researchers need more
rigorous operational support.
In 2018, through the work of the
ResearchOps Community and its #WhatisResearchOps initiative, the nascent
practice of ResearchOps was given shape: via a series of global
workshops by researchers and for researchers, the Community explored
what ResearchOps should look like and produced a framework to map its
But what’s behind the theory? What does
ResearchOps actually look like in the world today? And who are the
people leading the way? In this talk, Kate will share insight into the
state of ResearchOps today, talk about current and potential ResearchOps
opportunities and challenges, and share what she thinks the future
holds for this emerging practice.
Melanie Hambarsoomian : Why designers are moving into the product career path
When there’s no seat at the table for design, some designers are
taking the product seat. Why is this happening and what does this
scenario reflect about an organisation’s design maturity? How might we
increase design’s influence in organisations, from the strategic level
through to the execution?
5:30-6:25PM Entry, drinks, food, networking
6:30-6:45PM Intro and welcome and general IxDA informatio
6:45-7:10PM Melanie Hambarsoomia
7:10-7:20PM Shoutouts (roles available, projects seeking volunteers, other events of interest)
7:20-8:00PM Kate Towsey
8:00PM- Exeunt and downstairs to for drinks and further discussions/networking, etc.
Kate Towsey has
been a consultant specialist in ResearchOps for more than half a
decade. The instigator of the ResearchOps Community and the #WhatisResearchOps
initiative, she’s been instrumental in amplifying and shaping the
conversation around this emerging practice. Originally a content
strategist, she’s known as the researcher of user researchers and has
designed and delivered labs, participant recruitment services, research
panels, media archives and research communications for large
organisations around the world. Kate now walks the talk as Atlassian’s
Research Operations Manager in Sydney, Australia, where she’s building
out a team and delivering a seamless ecosystem to support people who do
Mel is a Product Designer who’s been working in UX design and research for over 8 years. She spent a few years working in London, for Telegraph UK (being in the newsroom when the EU referendum/Brexit votes were being counted) and MOO. She’s passionate about design being a peer to other disciplines, advocating the design discovery process and ensuring teams are driven by outcomes, not solutions. She’s about to start a podcast with two friends to talk about all things related to design & product.
June’s meetup brings a subject we haven’t approached for a while, design in the physical space. In addition, we have an IxDASydney discount for two more events keeping design physical. Sarah Forde and colleagues bring it to the IxDA Sydney community, just for you!. We have a 10% discount for the Vivid Sydney – Creative thinking and inventing for kids as well as a 10% discount for the Play Academy’s LEGO™ Serious Play™ Facilitation Workshop
Physical prototyping to design a future workplace
A team from AMP will share how they used physical prototypes in real office spaces, to help design and develop the future workplace for its employees. They explore the concept of an organic test and learn environment, where employees are expected to adopt an experiential mindset and contribute to the future design of their workplace.
Tickets to be released on Thursday 30 May , here and on Humanitix.
5:30-6:25 PM Check in, drinks, food, networking
6:30-6:45 PM Intro and welcome and general IxDA Sydney information
6:45-7:10 PM interaction19 Redux – Joe
7:10-7:20 PM Shoutouts (roles available, projects seeking volunteers, other events of interest)
7:20-8:00 PM Physical prototyping to design a future workplace – Sarah Forde and Tom Treffry
8:00 PM- Exeunt and downstairs for drinks and further discussions/networking, etc.
Sarah Forde transitioned in to service design from management consulting in 2017 , with an enquiring mind and a passion for transforming services through the discipline of human centred design. She has developed her passion and skills over nine years, delivering complex transformation projects through service and system re-design, both in Australia and the UK.
Tom Treffry is a corporate sustainability expert, committed to helping organisations address environmental issues and create positive social impact through wellbeing and responsible procurement. Tom is an MBA candidate at AGSM and passionate about using design thinking to help organisations create shared value.
April’s event will be the first run of IxDASydney’s invitational, where our call-out to the community to submit short presentation ideas bore immediate fruit. The first one joins Oli Weidlich to share their insights into creating an effective highlight reel to better communicate your findings. Then Oli will share his extensive experiences about effective intelligent agents. If you’re interested in bringing your 15 minute talk to the IxDA Sydney posse, just fill out our invitation to speak at IxDASydney.org/speaking to be considered.
Intelligent Agents and You – Oliver Weidlich
Intelligent Agents like Google Assistant, Siri and Alexa are becoming more and more prevalent in a range of products we use; from our mobile, to our car, to our home. What’s the difference between them and more importantly what’s the difference in the relationships that you can have with them. How do you design for the personality of the Agent and the services that you’rer interacting with?
The value and ease of highlight reels – Janek Gonsalkorale
Sometimes a presentation or a slide deck just doesn’t get insights into your stakeholders heads. Highlight reels can be a great bridge for creating empathy with your customers. But who has the time for that? I hear you say, especially with all the research and synthesis you have to do. And how do I get started? Although no Werner Herzog, Janek will show you a few tips and tricks of the trade.
Joe will present a quick review of some of the highlights from IxDA’s international conference in Seattle this February.
Agenda (please arrive before 6:15PM)
5:30-6:25 PM Check in, drinks, food, networking
6:30-6:45 PM Intro and welcome and general IxDA Sydney information
With 19 years of user experience consulting to Australia’s top companies, it’s likely you use a service that Oliver played a part in designing across mobile, desktop, wearables, smart devices, and voice. He is the Director of Design & Innovation at Mobile Experience and his clients have included Qantas, Telstra, Optus, Atlassian, NRMA, ABC, Museum of Contemporary Art, Commonwealth Bank and Westpac. He also loves working with start-ups to help them achieve their dreams, especially in the IoT & wearables space, across health, agriculture and automotive. He is an international conference speaker, advisory board member, mentor, and teaches Interaction Design at Sydney University.
Experience designer, semi-pro thinker, and under appreciated pun maker. Always up for a conversation about how much better Zack Snyder movies would be if he just listened to a screenwriter.
We’re proud to be kicking off the new year with a couple of great speakers at our Barangaroo home for 2019, Macquarie Bank. Both presenters want us thinking beyond the basic, beyond the typical, beyond where many of us spend out time, in front of computers and devices and considering a local market, a local collection of people. That’s why this session is particularly interesting as Gerry talks about what’s not being adequately considered in these new interfaces, and Selena brings understanding to the spectrum of diverse considerations that lead to memorable impact.
Speaking of impact, we’re trialling Humanitix for this event, and you are offered the option to donate to this month’s charity, Yalari. It’s not required, but just if you feel like it.
Yalari is a not-for-profit organisation offering secondary education scholarships at leading Australian boarding schools for Indigenous children from regional, rural and remote communities.
17:30-18:25 Drinks, food, networking
18:25-18:45 Welcome and general IxDA information
18:45-19:15 First presentation
19:15-19:25 Shoutouts (roles available, projects seeking volunteers, other events of interest)
19:25-20:00 Second presentation
20:00 Exeunt and downstairs for drinks and further discussions/networking, etc.
We often act as if the mobile phone were the pinnacle of human endeavour, instead of the short-term work-around it really is. The devices are too small, too big, too clunky, too limited, too distracting, too demanding to present a genuinely interactive and unobtrusive experience with the datasphere. And the touted replacements – heads-up displays, smart things, Home/Alexa/Siri are lamentably poor. So where does that leave Interaction Design and UX Design? Is it time to pack up our gear and go to the beach?
Selena Griffith – What I learned about experience design, innovation and entrepreneurship from 3 weeks in India and Myanmar
Designing memorable experiences is a passion of mine. I often have to juggle multiple stakeholders with varying needs and goals. Over the past 3 months I have designed and delivered 3 offshore courses in Indonesia, India and Myanmar. In this presentation I will discuss the insights I have gained through delivering these across language, culture, age, philosophy and discipline barriers along with what I’ve learn about innovation, entrepreneurship and delivering impact. I’ll take you on a full emotional rollercoaster from laughter to tears and back again and we’ll have some fun and learn stuff along the way. Oh and I’ll also shamelessly plug my book at the end.
Gerry has been in UX design for many years, working in private and public sectors. He’s co-authored a couple of books (Forms That Work, The Usability Kit), he’s been Director of Publications at UXPA.
Selena is a design and systems thinker and educator with 30 years of user centred design and 20 years of education experience. She is passionate about creating cross disciplinary learning experiences which provide opportunities to experience new perspectives, places and people paired with a goal of creating positive social and environmental Impact through considered innovation and entrepreneurship practices.
For our first of many IxDA Sydney events at Macquarie Bank we have decided to focus on the value of stories in design processes. Stories run through many of our research, design and deployment activities. We elicit stories from people, we tell stories in customer journeys, we may employ personas and stories in the design process and there probably no shortage of user stories written as part of the build process.
Stories and storytelling are enjoying unprecedented attention recently, both as features of culture and products of design. However, the analysis of stories is popularly reduced to a study of form, a repetition of certain archetypal characters and plots. This presentation will consider how we can both respect and go beyond this devotion to the heroic, considering the ways we can expand our use of stories to better represent organisations (story as identity), structure experiences (story as journey), and plot objects (story as form).
Melody Ha: Storytelling in immersive technologies.
Melody Ha will be drawing from her experiences with dramatic and thematic presentations, and story-telling within virtual reality and immersive environments, to share the value and power of storytelling to give interfaces better meaning. Although Melody is not a designer by training, her wide experience of storytelling across several media, informs how she guides designers to consider how to approach immersive virtual reality. Melody will outline the challenges and considerations when designing a virtual reality product or content that carries meaning and clarity through to the final product.
Our first IxDASydney #Upfront
In addition, Melody will be presenting as an #upfront, where she will be joined onstage by a few volunteer non-participants, as Lauren Currie described so well at UXAustralia in Melbourne this August. If you are interested in how you can do this at one of your events, or are just curious about what it is, have a look at We Are Up Front for more information.
Dreu has spent over 10 years researching and applying new ways to understand client situations and solve complex problems. He started out undertaking doctoral research on resolving wicked problems using conversation and co-design. On completion, he honed his consulting skills at Second Road, a strategic innovation consultancy recently purchased by Accenture. In 2017, he co-founded Pivot, the business strategy and innovation unit within Frost*collective. In the last 12 months, he has worked with a range of clients including Macquarie Capital, CBA, Telstra, UTS, UNSW, and NSW Family and Community Services. Dreu enjoys bringing insights from outside into business, drawing on the humanities and design to drive more innovative outcomes for his clients.
Melody is a multi-disciplinary producer with experience in a wide variety of mediums, from virtual reality to webseries, live action and animation, and everything in between – even the VIVID projections on the Sydney Opera House! Her interactive 360 thriller film 30 Minutes of Danger will be premiering at Melbourne International Film Festival, and she is currently producing VR Game, Sky Kraken: One For All. Last year she also produced the 2D animated webseries The Ibis Queen as part of the Fresh Blood initiative, and animated children’s webseries, Reggie and Friends. Her experience in post-production and animation combined with her past life as an actor give her the best combination for creating films with a creative and logistical eye.
Melody is currently in development for the VR series Remember and 300 Minutes of Danger at The Pulse Originals, and has recently launched website and interview series THE GREAT WAVE, which explores Asian-Australian creative talent. She is now currently producing two female powered comedy webseries, Chikas and Not That Easy.
IxDA Sydney, in association with Adobe, are very proud to bring you a panel discussion for the first World International Design Day 2018 #IxDD alongside over 50 other cities around the world. This year’s theme is Diversity and Inclusion in Design and we are excited to have a stellar line-up to speak on a panel about this exciting and relevant topic.
We are very pleased to welcome experts in this area, Manisha Amin, Ashlea McKay, Meera Pankhania and Sarah Pulis, alongside you and your participation.
We will be asking our community for some questions before the day (Tweet to @IxDA_Sydney with the hashtag #IxDASydQA) to get us started, but we will also take questions from the audience as the discussion evolves on the night.
Dr Manisha Amin is the CEO of the Centre for Inclusive Design (formally Media Access Australia), a not-for-profit social enterprise that uses the power of the marketplace. As the real and the digital worlds collide CfID help people to build and design products, services and policies that are inclusive and usable to as many people as possible. As technology becomes more complex they work to provide simple solutions to that everyone has opportunity to participate in economic, social, civil, political and cultural life.
Ashlea McKay is a freelance UX researcher, writer and keynote speaker with more than 8 years of experience in UX spanning both the public and private sectors in Australia as well as the international start-up space. She comes from an industrial design background and co-founded UX advice column UX Agony Aunt with Optimal Workshop in 2015. Ashlea is a proud autistic person who was diagnosed later in life at the age of 29 and is currently writing her first book on life as an autistic UXer that will also explore research and design for autism. www.ashleamckay.com
Meera has over 14 years experience working with digital agencies and consultancies and is the former Head of Accessibility and User Experience at AbilityNet, where she helped deliver the most inclusive Olympic Games in London 2012. At the DTA, Meera was a Product Manager and Service Designer on the Identity Program (GovPass) and is currently heading up the Service Design practice at the DTA. Meera has worked for global organisations including British Telecom, HSBC, Microsoft, The United Nations and Walmart.
Sarah Pulis is director of accessibility services and co-founder of Intopia, Australia’s fastest growing digital accessibility consultancy dedicated to creating an inclusive digital world. Sarah has worked in digital accessibility and inclusion for over 8 years, including as Head of Accessibility Services with PwC Australia and digital accessibility evangelist and specialist for Media Access Australia. Sarah is founder of A11y Bytes, a series of events run across Australia for Global Accessibility Awareness Day and A11y Camp, Australia’s premier conference on digital accessibility and inclusion. She is also co-organiser of the Sydney Web Accessibility and Inclusive Design Meetup.
In association with the University of Sydney Architecture, Design, and Planning campus.
About the Participants
Alan Cooper wants to be a good ancestor. That is why he is the co-creator of the “Ancestry Thinking Lab.” It’s an organization dedicated to finding and teaching practical methods for assuring that technology products behave in an ethical manner. This is just his latest effort in a long career as an inventor and thought leader in the world of software.
In 2017, Alan and his wife, Sue, sold Cooper, the company they had founded 25 years earlier. It was the very first interaction design consulting firm. Early on he established the basic design methods that are used across the industry today and helped to popularize the notion that digital technology shouldn’t terrorize its human users. In particular, his invention, design personas, is almost universally used in the field. He shared his tools, knowledge, and experience in two best-selling books, still in print and widely referenced. The company’s new owners are a European design firm, Designit, owned by Wipro, a tech company based in Bangalore, India.
In 1988 Alan invented a dynamically extensible visual programming tool and sold it to Bill Gates, who released it to the world as Visual Basic, arguably the most successful programming language ever. This is how Alan earned the sobriquet, “The Father of Visual Basic.” He started his first software company in 1976 and produced what has been called “The first serious business software for microcomputers.”
In 2017, Alan was named a Fellow of the Computer History Museum in Silicon Valley, California. In 1998 he was named a Visionary by the Silicon Valley Forum, and in 1995 Bill Gates named him the first Windows Pioneer.
In 2011, Cooper left Silicon Valley to live on a 50-acre former dairy farm in the rolling hills north of San Francisco where he continues to advocate for more humane technology.
In a world of broken systems, intractable problems and too little time, our obvious choice is to just keep going. Lauren Currie spells out why, when it comes to doing good, it’s time to recognise that brilliant ideas demand brilliant teamwork.
Lauren believes that the design process can help all of us tackle social problems and imagine how work could be better. She will share stories that will stir your heart and leave you asking “what is the right problem to solve?”
#upfront is a way for people who would one day like to speak onstage experience the stage without the pressure of performing. #upfront is dedicated to changing confidence. Here’s what other people from London and from Manchester who have sat #upfront have to say about the experience.
About Lauren Currie OBE
Lauren (aka @redjotter) is a European designer and entrepreneur from Scotland. She lives in London and spends her time as MD of NOBL in the UK and Europe, and founder of #UPFRONT. She speaks on global stages around the world from Sydney to Beijing, and New York to Hong Kong. She teaches at leading educational institutions from INSEEC to the University of Dundee, coaching the next generation of designers and doers. Prior to NOBL, Lauren was Director of Design at Good Lab.
Lauren co-founded Snook, an award winning global design consultancy based in London and Glasgow. Management Today recently named Lauren as one of the UK’s top 35 business women under 35. She designed and led Hyper Island’s new MA in Experience Design and was recently featured in ELLE UK as 30 women under 30 changing the world. Last year she was awarded an OBE for her services to design and diversity.
We have decided, that as there is a UX Mega Meet Up in Melbourne on the same night, we wouldn’t want to block the lovely people of Melbourne the opportunity to attend those events. Rest assured, we will be running one in Sydney soon.
We all know how hard it is to pick the right samples from your work to show your talents in their best light when approaching an interview. We can also appreciate that it is very hard to get good examples together when starting out after your education or training has just finished. Getting the right samples together can be very hard work. The same is true for either beginner or veteran; how can I show my work in the best light?
Last year we held a Portfolio design review in Sydney on the workshop Tuesday of UX Australia, and it was so well received, with over 30 portfolios reviewed we decided to take the idea on the road and redo it in Melbourne this year.