Work and clients

Discovery work for Yoolo

I worked with a small Edinburgh-based startup named Yoolo in order to find whether their business idea had a viable product-market fit.

This is the step that many startups don’t go through — to their later dismay. Yoolo were smart; they wanted to check whether there is a place for their idea on the consumer market. Only after such validation, they would spend money on developing the product (in their case — a website) and the infrastructure.

In order to understand the landscape and the demand, I’ve spent time with Yoolo to explore their concept. We then recruited a number of participants from the primary target group. Interviewing them provided us with an answer to the original question — and invalidated the idea to some extent. However, we’ve also opened doors to opportunities that none of us recognised before! This often happens when a proper discovery is run in the first place.

This is what Alex Marten, the Yoolo mastermind, said about our work:

Wojtek helped me test and validate a range of assumptions behind my idea and provided research into the desires and challenges of my future customers. He quickly understood my fairly complex technology proposition, and the results of his research were very clearly stated and will be extremely valuable for me when deciding our next steps as a company. I can recommend his services to anyone who would like to test their business concept before going to the expense and stress of developing it.

I could only wish for more customers like Yoolo. 🙂

Embedding UX culture at (operating internationally under the brand of Conotoxia) is one of the biggest Polish fintech companies. With their headquarters in the magical city of Zielona Gora, the organisation provides currency exchange services to many users around the globe.

The work environment is extremely dynamic. Growing rapidly and expanding to new markets, the organisation focuses on improving the quality of customer experience. The relatively new UX team works hard on making the lives of users easy — and I have the privilege to be able to help them with that.

My role is to help the UX team embed user-centric practices at the heart of the company. Whilst this is always a challenging task, I am happy to say that after more than a year of my involvement — things are shaping up. My last, week-long visit to Poland confirmed that. I have worked on-site to support my colleagues, and I noticed an immense, positive change in the approach to how the development and project management teams plan their actions.

It’s good to see how conversations can improve the quality of delivery across such a vast ecosystem of web and mobile apps. Whilst extending the toolset of the UX team (e.g. recent adoption of Jobs To Be Done) is important — ultimately it’s the will of people that makes the difference.

I asked Marcin Woźny, Cinkciarz’s UX Team Lead for a little testimonial after the recent training I facilitated for his team. Here’s what he said:

We’ve asked Wojtek to help us introduce the user-centric culture at Cinkciarz/Conotoxia. We were not disappointed. He analysed our requirements — and came back with practical, actionable guidance. Wojtek is very communicative and open to questions, not only during the session but also during the implementation phase.

Our relationship will continue — stay tuned for more updates.

Improving the UX of Euan’s Guide

Euan’s Guide is a charity from Edinburgh. This small, vibrant organisation runs a website that helps people find accessible places of interest. I have been involved with Euan’s Guide for a good few months. During that time I helped them implement many accessibility fixes resulting from an accessibility and usability audit that I have co-written with my friend, Peter Heery.

We have improved the search results presentation on the site, worked hard on delivering a better review experience and implemented a large number of small additions — that might be invisible to the naked eye, but help users of assistive technologies a lot.

The amazing team that runs the organisation got the chance to work in user-centric fashion. We’ve explored methods of ideation and collaborative design work. We’ve looked at how prototyping can help to articulate ideas and test them early enough. To make sure that everything runs smoothly, I’ve worked closely with the third-party software supplier that facilitates all technical aspects of the experience delivery.

Many of the explored features will be finding their way to the website in due course. It’s been a pleasure to work with such a talented team of people!

Here’s what Antonia Lee-Bapty, Managing Director of Euan’s Guide, said about our work:

Wojtek helped us to explore the usability of our website and how our audience engages with us. Using a variety of techniques from brainstorming through to one to one sessions and user experience conversations we have been able to revise our review process to be more efficient, welcoming and inclusive for everyone.

Agile Scotland 2019

I was invited to present at the Agile Scotland conference in March 2019. I am a fan of well-run Agile processes; and I know how hard it is to actually find Agile that’s, well, really agile. It’s a common myth that sprint-based work can’t accommodate good UX. With the careful application, it’s entirely doable (I recommend a read of the excellent ‘Sense and Respond’ book from J. Gothelf and J. Seiden in order to find out, how).

I wanted to talk about my experiences of working with Agile teams, and so I did in the presentation that’s now available on YouTube. I recommend — although I would like to ask you to take the contents with a pinch of salt. They’re meant to stimulate thinking and open the field of view a bit, that’s all.

The magic is gone, we’re humans again — presentation from Agile Scotland, March 2019