Google Design Sprint
Coordinator and Facilitator
The Google Design Sprint is a five-day process for answering critical business questions through design, prototyping and testing ideas with customers. Use the sprint framework when you need to solve a big problem, work fast and keep business investment low.
With brands starting to ask for more from Conversocial’s reporting suite, it seemed only natural, given the scale of the challenge that the Product and Design Team used the sprint framework to drive product improvements of the app.
The sprint team was tasked with taking a user-centric approach to developing a reporting solution that would give brands richer reporting features and more access to data. The team would need to deliver an MVP version of the solution within 12 weeks.
As the facilitator, it was my responsibility to manage time, conversations, and the overall sprint process, but not only that, I acted as coordinator too.
Since this was the first Design Sprint for many of the team and a large proportion were non-designers, I ensured that the Sprint deck included step-by-step instructions for each methodology.
Monday is about understanding the problem. The team got stuck in by sharing knowledge, interviewing experts from within the business, as well as customers and setting short and long term goals.
There were clear patterns in user and stakeholder pain points:
Deliver an MVP reporting solution to enable customers to easily report on key metrics
Deliver an enterprise-level reporting solution that helps brands to tell their customer care story
The team spent the afternoon creating an Affinity Map using ‘How Might We’ notes which were prioritised by dot voting and added to our problem map.
The problem map helped the team to focus:
The next two days of the sprint were about developing and critiquing ideas. The sprint team focused on concepts that could help users explore data and deliver detailed reports, following the 4 step sketch process.
Lightening talks helped the team learn more about industry-leading reporting solutions—Seeing how users could investigate data using natural language ultimately lead to the creation of a Flexible Query Builder, the key feature within our solution.
The feature would enable users to quickly create charts by selecting dimensions, metrics and filters from a simple sentence.
The team discussed the highlights from each solution, each capturing important details. By dot voting we were able to establish what ideas and features would make it into a prototype.
Priority features included:
The entire day on Thursday was dedicated to prototyping our solution, ready for testing with customers. The team split into two, with engineers focusing on stress testing the Flexible Query Builder and the rest of the team rapidly working on UI and a customer presentation.
Crunch time! The last day of the sprint is all about validation. When planning for the sprint I had arranged calls with 3 early access customers giving them each 45-minute slots.
The team documented feedback during each call and grouped them where they saw patterns.
Customers loved the Flexible Query Builder but wanted to investigate in more detail
Customers loved time saving features, in particular scheduling and drag & drop report builder
“Looks great! It’s exactly where reporting needs to be”
- Thomas, Data Analyst
Whilst feedback was generally very positive, participants thought that there were still ways in which we could improve the solution.
A project of this scale and magnitude required further validation and testing. The team visited customers on site to speak with managers who helped define the MVP solution by reviewing designs and completing the $100 Spend task.