Judge: Anna Burrell
Role: UX & UI Design and Development at John Lewis
Do you have a favourite app & website in terms of the design and user experience?
BBC News app – I never read a newspaper, and I want quick snippets of up to date news at my fingertips.
The BBC News app allows some personalisation, which suits my needs. It also provides me with an “at a glance” view of what’s happening now.
It’s simple to navigate and not overly designed, and remains true to brand.
Which industries, in your opinion, tend to deliver the worst user experiences, and why?
Utilities. I have a real struggle navigating BT’s website in particular. It sends you round and round in circles when looking for specific information. This usually results in a phone call, which is not the experience I wanted… I want to be able to self-serve as much as possible. Make it easy for me to do that!
What has been the greatest game changer in the UX and usability sectors over the past 10 years?
I guess this would be rise in “mobile” and its ever changing capabilities. This alone has transformed the way we shop, browse, discover, research and interact with information.
The fact that most of us are carrying around a mini computer in our pocket/bag and can go into a shop and be fully armed with information before even seeing a sales assistant is amazing! And we all take it as a given that we will have the best experience whatever device we are using.
A lot of work goes into making these journeys and experiences as simple and quick as possible. I remember many years ago getting one of the first Nokia WAP phones and trying to decide how and what content to display on it..would people really want to read all this text on their phone!
What do you think are the biggest challenges companies face utilising UX?
Ensuring that you don’t focus all your efforts on one channel. The omni-channel experience is a complicated one. Taking into consideration all the points where a customer may use mobile, go into a shop, use a tablet, back into a shop, buy on mobile etc.. needs to be carefully thought about and ensuring whatever channel they choose they have a simple, delightful and seamless experience.
Do you have any UX pet peeves?
Bombardment of emails, notifications, recommendations etc.. that are not relevant to me. I mean if I’ve recently bought a £1000 sofa, I don’t need anyone recommending that I need a sofa. Plus, making me jump through hoops to unsubscribe from newsletters etc.. It should be simple and quick..make it easy for me and I might just come back when I need you!
If you could have any super power what would it be and why?
Time travel – then the power of hindsight becomes a reality!