An introduction to User Experience

Would you like to experience what it is to be a UX designer?

The UX team have been hosting workshops in order to raise the profile and understanding of User Experience throughout Sopra Steria. The workshop format places those attending at the heart of all activities, allowing them to experience what it is to be a UX designer.

Following the success of a UX workshop held at our Edinburgh office, we have developed the hands-on workshop for a wider audience putting them at the heart of all UX activities. From the theoretical to the practical, the session has been built to give teams an understanding of how we fit UX into a business context and how this blends within an IT environment. Our aim is for participants to leave with an understanding of User Experience and some handy tips and tricks to apply to future projects and bids.

This newly developed workshop was brought to York for change managers at our joint venture company SSCL, and organised by the Head of Change, who got in touch after hearing about the previous Edinburgh hosting. We began by giving the team some background context as to how the UX team is constructed, what roles different members play and examples of projects we have worked on across all sectors of the business.

From here, our approach to the workshop was… less talking, more doing! The team was set multiple collaborative tasks that involved redesigning a current relatable experience. They learnt how to create user journeys, formulate elevator pitches, rapid prototype and user test. These tasks were all done with the aim to equip the team with some UX knowledge, provide a hands-on experience and demonstrate an understanding of key design decisions around UX.

Our ultimate aim was to provide the team with a sense of accomplishment in UX, which I think we achieved on receiving feedback:

“I enjoyed the ‘hands-on’ approach to learning about UX and what it involves”

“As someone who often struggles to understand abstract concepts, the opportunity to see what it all meant in practice helped me to get my head around it”

“It was a good session and really simplified the meaning of UX”

If this is something you feel would benefit you or your team, then feel free to get in touch – leave a reply below, or contact me Lynsey.brownlow@soprasteria.com.

Speed Networking

Pitching UX at Sopra Steria in 15 minutes, in the space of 2 hours, 8 times… equals 20 glasses of water!

Last Wednesday, Damian and I took a trip to Dundee University. We were invited to an event hosted by e-Placement Scotland that brought together employers in the IT industry and job seeking students. The aim of the day was to find students with a keen interest in UI/UX and could join our team here as an intern Edinburgh. We also used this opportunity to spread the word of all the the great things we do as a team amongst the students and other industry professionals.

We kicked off with a warm welcome from the hosts and a networking lunch with other employers. This was a great opportunity to meet people from companies all over Scotland, find out what they are doing and share experiences. Representatives from JP Morgan, Codeplay, BePositive, Blue2 and Agenor were some of the few we managed to speak to. Damian and I found ourselves to be the only User Experience focused members in the room, with a few employers seeking to cover this role that day.

The speed networking format with the students allowed time to talk to almost everyone in the room and in an ‘elevator pitch’ style. It was successful in finding those that stood out in the crowd and voiced interest in such a short time frame.

 Lynsey talking in a groupWorking to ringing bells every 15 minutes left Damian and I with loads of unfinished conversations. So much so, we had students surrounding us after. This resulted in being the last to leave the building, which can only be a good thing! (Hopefully not just because of our good spread of freebies!)
image showing team talk

This kind of event was great to represent Sopra Steria at. It not only reaps the benefits finding young talent, but we are now able to pitch the work we do in 15 minutes and have made connections with other industry professionals in Scotland.