When Roberta Dombrowski joined User Interviews as the VP of User Research, she recognized that her job would be a bit … meta. In her role, Roberta conducts user research about the researchers that use the User Interviews platform to recruit participants.
With User Interviews, researchers can source participants for their studies in just a few hours, and complete their research in days — all while targeting participants based on skills, consumer behavior, product usage and other qualifications.
Roberta’s job is to collect research about these researchers — a potential gold mine of insights if captured and leveraged well. Although Roberta was the first formal user researcher at the company, several departments were already collecting feedback when she started, and they were using a number of different platforms and sources.
“We had product managers, content marketers and designers who were already doing research to inform their pieces,” Roberta shared in a recent conversation. “So I realized really quickly that part of my role was going to be research operations. How do I enable and train other people on the team to do research? Where are all the insights going? Where is all the information?”
Roberta realized the company needed a way to centralize and leverage the research they already had, streamline the new research process and make insights more visible to stakeholders.
Empowering Internal Researchers to Make Informed Decisions
Roberta wanted the researchers at User Interviews to be able to see the themes the company had already uncovered as they began planning new research possibilities.
“Our charter is to help people make better decisions for our customers. So how would they use a research repository? If you think about the product or UX workflow, I want people who are planning for next year or doing visioning work to be able to go to [the repository] first to look at the existing data we already have in this particular area.”
She also wanted to provide greater visibility for the entire team, so all the stakeholders could easily access the insights from a wide spectrum of research projects.
Integrations Made EnjoyHQ Stand Out From the Competition
With these goals in mind, Roberta began looking for a research repository and organization solution. The ability to integrate with other tools was one of her top priorities when she started her search.
“Integrations were huge, and [EnjoyHQ] was one of the only tools that could sync up with Zapier and Salesforce, and could pull in Zoom videos from calls. [We know that] there's not going to be ‘one tool to rule them all,’ with all the teams … because we have product design, product managers and customer success who are all doing research.”
They needed a solution that could not only pull from a variety of different sources, but also aggregate large amounts of data so it was palatable and understandable for stakeholders.
Roberta and the team looked at both Dovetail and EnjoyHQ — but quickly decided that EnjoyHQ was the right choice based on their goals. She signed up for a free trial and immediately started creating projects and setting up data sources.
Reaping the Benefits of EnjoyHQ
Although User Interviews implemented EnjoyHQ in record time — they approached the process in small, manageable steps.
“We went integration by integration to set up EnjoyHQ. We had a weekly touch-base with our product leadership team where we would talk about the milestones and what we worked on for the week.”
Roberta put together a task force that stayed connected through Slack, to help uncover issues and maintain momentum.
“One of the biggest challenges when it comes to research ops is that we're building the ship and rowing it at the same time. We did a lot of self-education through Zoom and EnjoyHQ documentation videos. We also reached out to some people in the industry to ask about their experiences and how they set up their repositories.”
Advantages for a Wide Range of Internal Researchers
The User Interviews team now have workflows for tagging, pulling insights and tracking how researchers are using EnjoyHQ.
The product management and product design teams create research projects and set up folders with specific rules, and EnjoyHQ automatically forwards feedback to those projects according to the guidelines. When the teams conduct interviews, they can also add notes and snapshots to categorize and annotate the feedback.
“Our operations team does a lot of support across the organization. They use EnjoyHQ to look at trends happening on the team. Our customer success team is really interested in onboarding our customers, so they'll go in there and look at data too. We also have engineers who look at reports.”
Roberta regularly analyzes insights and publishes reports so the team can stay up-to-date on the latest customer feedback.
“We've started monthly reports for the team on the trends we're seeing over time. We'll have themes that we do on a recurring basis so we're providing visibility. We send out reports over Slack once a month and include a TL;DR that shows the key points and how people can use them in the business to make better decisions. Then we see whether people are viewing the reports and whether they are logging in to retrieve their licenses, etc.”
Roberta’s Vision for the Future of Research Ops
Roberta has big plans for continued growth for research operations at User Interviews. When we asked her about her hopes for the future and how she wants to continue using the EnjoyHQ solutions, she said:
“[EnjoyHQ] is becoming a source of truth for a lot of the data on our team. I could envision a world where we're using this to aggregate centralized things like NPS or customer success emails.
“Those are all signals that inform [decisions] and we want to use that data to shape the product roadmap. I also want to bring in quant or survey data, and create better home pages for different departments and put stories and important insights together for those groups.”
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