User Research for a Government Organization

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Faced with a design mandate, this government organization needed to do research before designing the solution to ensure the solution was appropriate for its audiences. I was able to help this organization with an interview plan, interviewing, analysis, and journey mapping.

The details of this project are under NDA. This case study focuses on the process used to do the user research.


Working with a small team, this project was two distinct sections: user research and information architecture. The user research portion of this project was quite intense and varied. In the research process, Key Pointe worked with four other people to plan, conduct, and analyze the research.

  • Targeted audience: Given the mandate, our targeted audience was well defined and we were able to recruit through our network and through contacts within the organization.
    User interview sheet: Based on the audiences, we developed several different interview question sheets and scripts.
  • Interviews: We conducted interviews over a wide geography and traveled to multiple locations for these interviews. We were spoke with varied groups of people, from professionals to private individuals to government employees.
  • Analysis: Based on the interview results, the core team collaborated on analyzing the interview results. Our analysis focused not on solutions, but the opportunities that arose from the findings. Our opportunities were not limited only to the mandated scope. We summarized our findings in an opportunities spreadsheet and a journey map.
  • Journey map: We created journey maps to illustrate the journey of a private individual and how this person interacted with either the government, non-profits, or professionals. These journey maps illustrated the process, challenges, and information needs of the individual.


During this research project, one of the main challenges was uncovering findings that were outside the mandated scope of the project. While we recorded and reported these findings, it was outside our abilities to come up with solutions to these findings.

We were also very conscious of maintaining the confidentiality of the interviewees.

Logistically, scheduling approximately 20 interviews with busy people, and traveling to different locations was a lot of work. Luckily the scheduling and travel details were split between individuals so one person didn’t have to figure out all these details.

With approximately 20 interviews, there was a lot of detail to sort through. We were able to effectively comb through and group the results into broader findings and brainstorm opportunities based on the findings.

How Key Pointe Helped

For this project, Theresa created the interview plans, trained subject matter experts on how to be an observer and take notes, conducted user interviews, participated in the analysis, wrote up the findings and opportunities report, and created the journey map and reviewed it with the SMEs.

By | 2018-01-16T16:12:22+00:00 September 7th, 2016|Categories: Case Study, User Research and Usability Testing|Comments Off on User Research for a Government Organization