Research Now

Internal Tool

Optimizing for the Future

Making Project Managers even more efficient.

Research Now has been the leader of digital data collection for over a decade, and as the leader, Research Now has consistently defined and shaped the future of the research industry. Just in the last year, Research Now has launched several products aimed at helping businesses better understand their audiences and to help them make smarter decisions.

All of this growth, however, has put strain on the existing teams responsible for creating and managing projects. To alleviate some of the stress, the UX team was tasked with increasing the efficiency of internal tools so that we could improve key metrics, like the time it takes to field a project and the effort required to train new employees.

The following describes the process we took to diagnose existing usability issues and how we ultimately addressed them. This page has been left intentionally vague to comply with confidentiality agreements.

Our design process…

Finding redundancies and strategically cutting them out.


Leveraging the benefits of both qualitative and quantitative data.


Analysis of both the qualitative and quantitative data provided rich insights.


Affinity Diagramming

We organized over 400 observations and breakdowns into overarching themes by categorizing each note by intent and task. Once we were done, we had 7 different distinct areas ranging from errors to communication.

We referenced the affinity diagram throughout our design process in order to ensure each of our design decisions were grounded in data.



Data Mining with R

With R I was able to find interesting trends within the data collected by Google Analytics and Tableau. On the left, for example, is a graph of the most common sequences of pages accessed for all projects. This helped us reconsider how we wanted to update the navigation for the new version of the software.

Before I was able to learn anything, however, I had to do significant cleaning and manipulation of the data. For example, I had to restructure all of the Google Analytics data so that it was structured by Project instead of by page.

Our Insights…

After consolidating we came up with the following insights.

Opportunity Area 1

System requires duplicate entry of project data.

Opportunity Area 2

Teams perform similar tasks differently.

Opportunity Area 3

Documentation is not adequately maintained.

Opportunity Area 4

Important details are buried several pages deep.

Opportunity Area 5

Navigation does not match mental models.


Repeatedly testing until it was just right.

The Team

The people who made this project a reality.

My Contributions

While designing the solution, each of us took an equal role in determining the direction of the design and where it ultimately headed. My main contributions can be seen on the right. Shoutouts to Kris for scheduling everything and keeping us on track and to Nicki for making our designs pop.