When I joined my team in 2012, they were in the middle of refitting their user centered design lab. The lab was previously configured for large scale hands on studies of hardware and software usability. It was impressive, but large and expensive. The equipment, though top of the line for its age, was not well matched to the web and mobile software projects we currently support.
The team had already transitioned to a smaller, more flexible space and ordered new recording equipment. They also purchased licenses for modern prototyping (Axure RP) and usability testing software (Morae) , which became my first responsibility.
One of my first tasks was to incorporate the new software into the team’s existing user centered design practices. I developed lab configuration protocols and best practices, experimented with data analysis techniques, established prototyping expertise, and trained colleagues in using the new lab.
The result has been higher levels of granularity in collected data, faster turnaround times, and a shift towards testing earlier in the development process. We achieved these benefits with minimal disruption to the teams established practices.