Design in the Org- August 8

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. 

This is one of the usual IxDASydney events, at Macquarie Bank as usual, 1 Shelley Street, Barangaroo.

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 various parts.

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?

Agenda, roughly

  • 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

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 research.

Melanie Hambarsoomian

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.

Main photo by Sven Read on Unsplash

Categorised as Meetup