Productivity Tips for UX Projects | Tony Turner | Skillshare

Productivity Tips for UX Projects

Tony Turner

Productivity Tips for UX Projects

Tony Turner

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16 Lessons (13m)
    • 1. Productivity Tips for UX Projects Intro

    • 2. Why Be Organized

    • 3. Why Track Time

    • 4. Techniques for Tracking Time

    • 5. Tools for Tracking Time

    • 6. Analyzing Trends in Time Usage

    • 7. Common Challenges for Tracking Time

    • 8. Why Track Tasks

    • 9. Techniques for Tracking Tasks

    • 10. Tools for Tracking Tasks

    • 11. Common Challenges when Tracking Tasks

    • 12. Why Organize Files

    • 13. Hierarchy for Organizing Files

    • 14. Tools for Organizing Files

    • 15. Challenges when Organizing Files

    • 16. Conclusion

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About This Class

This class will cover various productivity techniques and tools for managing UX projects. This class is for any level of UX practitioner from beginner to advanced. No prior knowledge or experience is required. Students will learn how to properly track time, track tasks and organize files. This course will aid students in being more efficient as well assist in clearing the mind for creative work. 

The class project will be to create a set of tasks for a UX project you’re working on or would like to work on. You will use the techniques and tools discussed in the course to accomplish this.

Meet Your Teacher

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Tony Turner


Hello, I'm Tony. I'm a lead user experience research at Progressive Insurance and I've worked in various capacities in the UX design/research and Product design fields. 

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1. Productivity Tips for UX Projects Intro: I'm Tony Turner, um, a UX designer researcher with experience in freelance and corporate environments. In this class, I will teach you various organization techniques and tools will dive into tracking time, tracking tasks and organizing files. Various tools will be discussed such a jiffy and wonder lis, but we'll also talk about how you can accomplish organization. Goals was just pen and paper. There's no correct. Is it for this class in any skill level is welcome. Once you've begun applying these skills, you'll notice market improvements and efficiency. And the freeing of mental resource is to get real work done. You may find these techniques to be challenging initially, but once you develop the habits and muscle memory, you'll begin to see the improvements you're looking for. Once you're organized will be presented with tons of opportunity for micro celebrations. Every task completed should be celebrated as you move on to the next. Being organized will help you stay in the present moment and remember to appreciate your own effort and accomplishments. You also get insights on areas for improvement. You can then adjust your habits to make room for growth 2. Why Be Organized: the first thing I want to address the question a lot of people have. The question is, why be organized? There are many reasons to be organized, but I will cover just a few. The first reason I want to mention to be organizes these with which you can find things in the context of us. This could be a component in the design system. A sketch file, a persona you created, etcetera, a place for everything and everything in its place is the motto here. When you know where something is, you can go right to it. The second reason is it's easier to make changes. Let's say you want to change the way a menu a structured when you know exactly where all the files are, the makeup that made you and how long it took you to create it in the first place, you're more likely to be able to plan and prioritized update. This leads the third reason, which is you'll have more time to work on priority tasks. First off you are resource is that help determine what to prioritize, knowing how long it takes to do certain test, knowing how many task it takes to complete a part of the project's etcetera. We'll also free up time. You would, you would have spent looking for files, components, usability reports, etcetera. Next, there is improved communication when things organizes easier to share versions of designs and ideas with clients, stakeholders and team members. It takes less time to prepare slides for presentations, and it's easier to create a story around your designs or research, and lastly, it can spark joy. There's a certain peace of mind you can develop when you're organized. Check out Marie Condos book picture on the right for more on this. 3. Why Track Time: the first segment on you ex organization. I want to talk about it's tracking time. There a number of reasons you want to try time. The first is it helps you understand your habits. Are you aware of how long it takes you to write a usability test script? How about how long it takes you to create a design component for a mobile app draft on or how often do you take breaks? These are questions that could be answered with time tracking, and once you know your patterns of behavior, you can adapt and optimize your work schedule. It also helps you gauge how much time is being put in the priority tasks. Once you prioritize things, you can focus your time tracking analysis on the progress you're making on those priorities . Lastly, you can provide behavioral details to clients. They may be interested in this whether you're building them by the hour or flat feet. Having the intent to share a time tracking with clients can be motivation will keep you on track with work 4. Techniques for Tracking Time: now going to seven techniques for time tracking. The first technique is organized time segments by project. Check out the jiffy screen shot to the right. The projects were listening. You can start tracking by project to give more granular than the project level. I recommend so tracking by project, but at a no as to what the specific task is. For example, the project could be designing the website for an e commerce business in the specific test could be designed. The mobile navigation for the site. It's also beneficial to add to the project is four is metadata on the project. For example, the client for B Q X Mobile is Dusty Steinbruck in the screenshot. This house was saying, How much time your spending on work for his client, the next typists to try it? By the minute, at least, tracking just hours or days doesn't provide much detail on behavior. The goal is to really understand habits in order to in order to make adjustments. Next, you'll want to keep track of the history of your behavior. Try storing data and reviewing patterns across a week. At least, this again helps understand habits so you can make any adjustments, behavior, optimize your work process 5. Tools for Tracking Time: they're numerous tools you can use the track time. Simplest. It's pencil and paper along with the stopwatch. There's no need for a PC or a phone for this method. You just need a dedicated notebook with metadata written down that I mentioned before, such as Project Client and Notes. You can also use Microsoft Excel functions the same his pencil on paper, except it's digital and thereby a bit easier to review. You can also make charts and grass help analyze your behavior. It's awesome or terrible than pencil and paper. Lastly, there are various APS for time tracking. This is my preferred tool. I use the jiffy app it has built in analysis features that I'll go into later. The only caveat is you'll need a smartphone to do tracking with Jiffy App. 6. Analyzing Trends in Time Usage: now talk about how to analyze trends. The goal here is to simply find patterns of behavior. I recommend doing this weekly or monthly. If you use XLR Jiffy. It's easy to see the pattern to be a charts and graphs. Jiffy Charts and graphs are auto generated and excel. You'll have to create them on your own and with pencil and paper. You have to highlight any patterns you see in the raw data. Some patterns to look for are how long you're spending on priority tasks per day or per week. How much time your spending on projects for specific clients total time log per day or per week, uh, etcetera, feel free to investigate other data points that you think would be useful for you. 7. Common Challenges for Tracking Time: There are a few common challenges with tracking time. One common challenges. Forgetting to track. To mitigate this, you'll just have to have patience with yourself. You can set a reminder, perhaps hourly, to track what you're working on eventually will become a habit. It will also take some time to remember to review patterns weekly or monthly. But once you've done it a few times that made adjustments to your behavior, it will become second nature, another common challenge to the finding categories for projects. Track for this. You want to consider how the client separates out the work you're doing for them. That's how you deliver the work. So that's the best way to break down the projects. Another issue people have is how to track time when they're multitasking. My advice is to just not multitask. It actually makes you less productive. In the end, it's better prioritize your task and complete them one by one with efficiency. Lastly, there is constant switching between projects. This is very similar to multitasking, and again, I would say, devote salad pockets of time at least 15 minutes each. Project 8. Why Track Tasks: now Movinto. Why you should track tasks. The first reason is to limit forgetting to complete tasks. When tasks are written down, you're likely to get them done. Sometimes a project requires many tasks to be completed. This is true for both the research and design side of you X. It's important to provide value to the client by completing projects fully. Another reason. The track task is the eight and prioritization again. When all the tasks that ran down it's much easier to figure out what the priorities are in the order in which you should complete tasks. The last reason I will mention is mindfulness. Mindfulness is the quality of being aware of the present moment when your marks in the present moment you can experience flow, which is deep immersion and successful work. When tasks were laid out of you spend less time figuring out what to do next. It's much more likely you'll experience mindfulness and float 9. Techniques for Tracking Tasks: now discuss and techniques for tracking tasks. One technique is to mark task done as you complete them. This may seem like it would interrupt the flow I mentioned earlier, but it actually aids and staying focused and moving on to the next item in the list. When we don't check off items as we complete them, we're liable to go down a rabbit hole and get distracted by things. The next technique is to carry over test for the day. If something doesn't get completed, it becomes a priority for the next day. You should also evaluate if your estimation of how long the task would take is accurate and whether you should break it down into sub test. This brings me to my next technique, which, which is to use metadata on the tasks. The metadata I use is due date priority notes, time estimation and actual completion time due date and priority of the most important. As you get more comfortable tracking, you can add the rest and even that meditate and not mentioned here. Lastly, I recommend using categories or folders for your tasks. I break it down by project usually so I have a project phoner. When I'm ready to work on a certain project, I'll go into that folder and start turning through tasks. 10. Tools for Tracking Tasks: Now let's talk about some tools for tracking tasks. The first tool is the old faithful pencil. On paper, it has many of the same benefits that I mentioned around tracking time. You don't need a separate device, such as a laptop or phone, and you also get the physical feeling of checking items off. It's also easier to display the tasks at your desk in your office and see your progress all the time. The next tool I mentioned is Excel With Excel. You can use tabs for folders and produce charts and graphs based on your progress. You just need a computer or a smartphone to use it. And lastly, there is wonder. Lis Wonder Lis is made for tracking. Lists not only can create folders, but you can also view tasks and priority order, change priority and view groups of task by due date. For this solution, you'll also need a smartphone or a computer 11. Common Challenges when Tracking Tasks: now go into some common challenges you may face is you begin to track test. The first is forgetting to track, either forgetting to create the task through the excitement of getting started or forgetting the check off tasks as you complete them. This is OK as long as you said some reminders to track your developed a habit. Eventually insist subsequent benefits will come quickly. There after the second challenge is the finding task categories. I recommend using projects as the categories and using the technique I mentioned earlier to define projects, go straight to the client and figure out what constitutes a project based on what you're delivering and how they define projects. Another common challenges. Defining tasks. I could teach a whole class on this with the keys. Consider how long it will take to complete actions and then break those actions down by work increments. For example, if you work in 30 minute increments and you know creating a wire frame will take you an hour, break the wire frame action down into two 30 minute periods, say, 30 minutes to sketch and then 30 minutes to put the wire frame is an actual. This brings me to the next challenge, which is allotting the appropriate time to completing tasks. It's good to make guesses first and then use time tracking to see if you were correct and make adjustments. Eventually, you'll know your cadence were completing common tasks. Lastly, there is a question of how to deal with repetitive tasks. There a number of ways to manage this and wonder Lis. You can check the task off than uncheck it. Where you could set is a repeating task for whatever time period and it will reappear on its own. 12. Why Organize Files: the last section is on organizing files. There are many reasons to organize your files. One is to prevent losing them. When you have a CIA random files on your desk top, it's difficult to find a specific one. We'll have to do constant searching rather than being able to go directly to the file. There is also the opportunity to do version a version ING is showing the different iterations of an item over time. For example, you could have Pizzeria Macca version 10 dot sketch. 13. Hierarchy for Organizing Files: the primary technique for organizing files and setting a hierarchy. The Harrick, you said, will depend on your goals. For example, you could organize files by stakeholder. If you have a number of clients that you're balancing projects for, this will be beneficial underneath stakeholder. I would have your folders and project voters to match the time tracking and task tech tracking structure. From there you organized by activity type or deliverable experiment and figure out which hierarchy works best with your work process. See how long it takes you to find certain files. 14. Tools for Organizing Files: the primary tools available are your native File Explorer or a cloud application, such as one driver, Google Drive. The primary benefit of putting files into the cloud is they're backed up to drawback is you depend on Microsoft or Google servers, and you'll need an Internet connection to cool files. 15. Challenges when Organizing Files: the primary challenge when it comes to managing files is determining hierarchy. Try the example hierarchy are provided and see if it works for you. The best way to determine if it works for you is trying to find certain files. You also wanna build shortcuts. For example, if it's 2019 having a shortcut directly to that photo would be helpful. If you're if you forget your hierarchy, you should consider changing into something that is more natural to you. Maybe you rather organized by week than year again. It's just what's most comfortable. Forgetting the five documents is another common challenge. I would just set a task at the end of the state of be sure you file things away. 16. Conclusion: I hope you learned a lot in this course. The goal was to give you some quick tips on organization to get you started on your journey . Organization is key in the US and product design industry. Is there something deliverables and such? A variety of wants and needs from clients? As you completed your projects, I encourage you to post it in the projects. Calorie. Thanks.