Role:Sr. UX Designer
In 2011, Thompson Reuters had an internal discovery group called Project Omaha. I was a Sr. UX Designer in that group, specializing in Alerting, Messaging, and Faceted Search Results. Our research, design, and development would eventually be adopted into the Thomson Reuters Eikon product.
The UX team structure was a hub and spoke style, where designers were assigned to specific product teams (often multiple). I was assigned to Alerting, Messaging, and Faceted Search Results. Each group had an SME (Subject Matter Expert) which acted as a proxy end user. I worked closely with each SME to understand their perspective of the business and to perform Task Analysis. The challenges in my product teams were to define innovative and optimized methods for the following: setting and managing Alerts (i.e. – an equity price alert), using faceted search results to quickly find news content (i.e. – a research report), and managing contacts within the TR messaging platform.
The UX team was directed by Cathy Martin. Even though each designer was autonomous within their respective product teams, we had dedicated UX team scrum calls and review sessions. At the beginning of each sprint, I would enter my tasks in JIRA with an estimated completion time. I updated Cathy and the team of my progress during the morning scrum calls. In addition to the calls, the team would schedule review sessions where we could share our projects and provide feedback for others.
After each JIRA task was completed and reviewed by the team and Cathy Martin, my work would flow to the visual designer for styling. Once implemented, the UX team would circle back and review the functionality. User testing was performed at this stage, with screen and audio recording as documentation.
The output of the Project Omaha was modular. We were designing re-usable elements that could come together in multiple arrangements. The approach was successful, as it created a solid foundation for being able to incorporate our work into Eikon. Even if the visual design changed, the underlying UX design was still valid.