6-8 September 2017, McGrath Centre, St. Catharine's College

Using jobs-to-be-done to design better user experiences

A 90 minute Workshop by:

Neil Turner


Slides from session

The slides used for this session are available to download from here.

About this Workshop

"People don’t want to buy a quarter-inch drill. They want a quarter-inch hole." (Theodore Levitt, Harvard marketing professor). Jobs-to-be-done is one of those concepts that intuitively makes so much sense, and yet still isn’t that widely known or used. The idea that you should focus on the job that someone is trying to do - rather than just the means of achieving it - is not a revolutionary one, but is nonetheless incredibly powerful and insightful. As Clay Christensen, one of the fellow architects of jobs-to-be-done, has said, "In hindsight the job to be done is usually as obvious as the air we breathe. Once they are known, what to improve (and not to improve) is just as obvious".

In this interactive and hands-on workshop, I will use a real world problem to teach how to use jobs-to-be-done to not only come up with innovative ideas, but to research and design better user experiences, regardless of whether someone is starting from a blank sheet, or improving an existing product or service.

You will learn how to identify jobs-to-be-done and some tools and techniques that can be used to capture, explore and investigate these. You’ll learn how to map out jobs-to-be-done, how to use job stories to help frame jobs-to-be-done and how to enhance personas, user journey maps and even user stories using jobs-to-be-done. The ultimate goal of the workshop is to teach you an invaluable UX research and design technique that you'll be able to use straight away for your own projects.

The workshop will be broken into sections:

About jobs-to-be-done

Introduction and overview of jobs-to-be done. The concept will be introduced with examples (digital and non-digital), including why people buy milkshakes for their commute and why Spotify is so successful. The different components of jobs-to-be-done (success metrics, unmet needs, related jobs etc…) will be introduced.

Discovering jobs-to-be-done + exercise

Techniques for discovering jobs-to-be-done, such as interviews and observation, will be discussed. Job maps will be introduced to help capture and frame jobs-to-be-done, along with their component parts (eg steps, success metrics, unmet needs). You will have the opportunity to have a go at discovering jobs-to-be done through a pair interviewing exercise.

Defining jobs-to-be-done + exercise

Job statements will be introduced to help further refine and define jobs-to-be-done. You will have the opportunity to create job statements for some of the jobs-to-be-done identified during the previous discovery exercise.

Using jobs-to-be-done + exercise

Opportunities to use jobs-to-be-done within projects will be discussed, including enhancing personas, user journey maps and user stories. You will have the opportunity to use your job maps and job statements to identify opportunities to innovate and to improve the user experience, and also identify where the experience might be changed to better fit the job-to-be-done. During a group discussion you'll be able to share your own ideas and see for yourself how jobs-to-be-done is tailor-made for user-centred design.

About the Speaker

A former techy turned UX Jedi, Neil is an experienced UX lead currently working at AstraZeneca, the global pharmaceuticals company. He's previously worked for a global information content and technology company, a global travel website, a UX consultancy, a digital agency and a top 10 UK e-commerce website. When he's not trying to make the world a slightly nicer place Neil likes to ride his bike, listen to 90s music and blog about all things UX related at uxforthemasses.com.


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