Designers use contextual interviews by watching and listening to participants whilst working in their own environment, as opposed to being in a lab. Contextual interviews are used to understand better a certain group of people, their needs, emotions, expectations, environment, etc. as well as to reveal formal and informal networks and hidden issues of specific participants.

PREPARATION: 2-4 hours
DESIGN PHASE: Insights
DURATION: 1-3 hours per round
TEMPLATE OR GUIDELINES: Create own interview plan
FACILITATORS: 1 -3, design team members
RESOURCES: Notebook, photo camera, voice recorder, video camera
PARTICIPANTS: 5, Users, employees, or other stakeholders
EXPECTED OUTCOME: Field data such as notes, texts, photos, videos, audio recordings

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By using contextual interviews, designers tap into participants everyday moments and subtleties, in their own environment. Designers conduct contextual interviews with users, employees, or any other relevant stakeholders in a situational context relevant to the design challenge.

STEPS

1.START:
Define the focus of what you are interested in and consider what you want to do with the findings (build personas, journey maps, system maps, etc.).

2.IDENTIFY:
Based on the selected focus area, define the criteria for selecting suitable interviewee-participants, considering not only who they are, but also when and where you will meet them.

3.PREPARE:
Think about how you will recruit your interviewee-participants, what expectations will be set up-front, how you will start and end, and how much time they are expected to dedicate to this activity. Write up the interview plan and a guide explaining what you want to find out.

4.CONDUCT:
After deciding the best times, length and depth of the contextual interview, immerse yourself into the interviewee-participant’s environment and start the interview by asking open and non-leading questions. Consider using the 5 Why’s tool, to reveal underlying motivations.

5.REPORT:
Write up key learnings right afterwards. Review all your data and highlight important issues whilst trying to find patterns within the data. Make a short summary that includes your key findings and examples from the data that exemplify these, such as quotes, photos, or videos.

Takaisin INSIGHTS: Discovering & Empathizing -sivulle