Is this you?

“We can’t seem to nail down requirements and suffer from feature creep”
“I wish we had a better way to prevent missed or incorrect requirements”
“My team is fighting about what direction our product should take”
I want to create an innovative product, but I’m not sure where to start”
“I have a new product idea, but don’t know if customers will want it”
“I want to improve the user experience of our products”

By attending this workshop, you’ll learn how to reliably:

  • Capture detailed user data that provides ongoing value for future products
  • Create coherent, user-centered visions to drive your road map and requirements
  • Discover hidden and emergent needs in your market or user population
  • Understand the underlying causes of customer satisfaction issues with your product or service
  • Define a user-centered system structure and behavior for your products
  • User-validate requirements for your next release before committing to development

Learn the industry-leading approach to user-centered innovation

This intensive, hands-on workshop is for anyone who has a part in defining and designing things people use—products, systems, services, or processes. Contextual Design provides you and your organization with a practical way to successfully start with a problem or idea—the “fuzzy front end”— and navigate through to a user-validated design.

You’ll learn to use Contextual Inquiry, the best-practice user research technique, to gather data and develop deep insight into what people are trying to achieve in their work or life. You’ll learn how to use this insight to drive groundbreaking innovations. And you’ll learn how to validate a proposed solution by testing and iterating a mockup with actual users who use it while they work.

A flexible program to fit your busy schedule

This series is offered in three one-day workshops, each building on the other. Each day is designed to be standalone and develop a core capability you can use. So you can attend one, two, or all three days to best fit your schedule, budget, and learning needs.

Taught by experienced trainers and practitioners

The workshop includes real-world examples and exercises to develop skills that participants can begin to use right away in their work. It is taught by our senior professionals in small enough class sizes to ensure individual attention.

Wendy Fritzke—Senior Coach
Wendy has been coaching teams in Contextual Design techniques for 15 years. She has helped teams from a variety of industries—including software, hardware, healthcare, legal services, IT, customer service, and retail—define their product requirements and drive product design with detailed, grounded user data.

Dave FlotreeSenior Work Practice Designer
Dave has over 25 years of customer-facing business experience in user research, requirements analysis, functional design, and marketing of technical products. He has used Contextual Design with clients from start-ups to Fortune 100 companies in a wide range of domains including healthcare, legal services, financial, education, business systems, construction, and software.

Who should attend

Individuals or teams who have a hand in defining or designing products, systems, business processes, or services: product managers, designers, developers, marketing professionals, project managers, business analysts, quality managers, and consultants.

What you’ll learn and practice

Monday, November 7
Contextual Inquiry: Innovate from deep customer insight

Find out how to go beneath symptoms and feature requests to reveal the real underlying issues customers face and need help with. Learn how to bring customer data into your organization in a way that’s vivid and actionable for new designs.

Course Outline:

  • Introduction to the principles behind contextual inquiry field interviews
  • Practice how to conduct  contextual inquiry interviews
  • Practice conducting an interview interpretation session
  • Practice building an affinity diagram to reveal core issues and insights across a user population
  • Introduction to setting project focus and planning contextual interviews

Tuesday, November 8
Visioning: Invent a new customer experience from user data and design thinking

Reveal and solve the core issues that exist across your market or user population, doing so in a way that inspires inventive thinking while keeping team conversations and ideas focused on reality and what matters most to customers.

Course Outline:

  • Introduction to modeling how people work and live
  • Practice building and consolidating work models, and analyzing them for design implications
  • Introduction to visioning a new way to work or live from consolidated user data
  • Practice participating in a visioning session, a facilitated ideation process
  • Introduction to evaluating and improving visions to reflect business and technology realities
  • Introduction to consolidating and dividing the vision into releases for implementation

Wednesday, November 9
User-Centered Requirements: Define and validate products and systems that people will use

Capture and organize requirements in a way that builds in usability by providing the right functions users need at the right time and place. Then co-design and iterate mockups with users while they work to uncover and fix requirements errors before committing to development.

Course Outline:

  • Introduction to using interaction patterns to represent system structure
  • Introduction to storyboards and User Environment Design to capture user-centered requirements
  • Practice creating a storyboard to design the details of specific user tasks in a vision
  • Introduction to paper prototypes and prototype interviewing with users
  • Practice paper prototype interview for validating requirements
  • Practice interpreting an interview to identify and resolve issues

Daily schedule

8:00     Onsite registration opens, light continental breakfast provided
9:00     Morning session begins
noon    One hour lunch break, buffet lunch provided
5:00     Afternoon session ends
Morning and afternoon sessions include 15-minute breaks with refreshments