Atos were in the process of commissioning the fit-out of a new office complex in the centre of Glasgow to house 400+ staff. At the heart of the new office is a suite of user-centred design studios enabling ATOS to put their customers into the middle of the design decision making process.
What Atos wanted:
Their aim was to create a functional, flexible, comfortable space into which their customers could be invited to take part in research as well as providing a inspiring creative space for designers and project stakeholders. The lab would allow them to observe, record and study customers interacting with their products and services first hand.
The physical space had been set aside and Bunnyfoot were engaged to advise on soundproofing, computing hardware, software, eye tracking equipment, integration of viewing facilities with their inhouse AV system, data storage, and other best practice relating to the running, maintenance and set up of a world class UX lab.
We have been building user experience labs since Bunnyfoot was established in 1999. We’ve built labs in Oxford, London, Reading, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Sheffield and Hong Kong as well as setting up temporary labs in the US, China, India, Poland, France, Spain, Belgium, and everywhere else we’ve carried out research over the last 16 years.
Our Head of IT has been working on perfecting all aspects of the UX lab set up since joining in 2007 and has overseen all of the permanent labs built by Bunnyfoot since then whether at our offices or our clients. Being experts in user experience and usability we apply the same processes and attention to detail that we’d use in our research to the construction of our labs and the equipment which make them function - resulting in a thoughtfully usable and truly flexible space.
We provide not only consultancy on best practice, processes and training but also supply and install all of the AV equipment, PCs, networking, eye tracking equipment as well as instructional & troubleshooting documentation, ongoing telephone and on-site support packages and upgrade advice.
Some of our most recent clients include ATOS, Marks & Spencer and John Lewis.
What Bunnyfoot delivered:
- A flexible testing space capable of running and recording user experience testing on wide number of products both online and off-line
- Eye tracking equipment for use with desktop PC and mobile/tablet devices
- A viewing room with audio and video feed from the lab to accommodate up to 8 people
- iMacs for the Design Studio area; configured for analysis of research, video clip production and wire-framing & design work
- On-site training with the recording and eye tracking equipment
- Spare eye tracker and software licenses
- Specialist Software for consultants and designers
- Consultation at all stages throughout the design and building phase of the new facility
- Comprehensive instruction manual
- Email & telephone support
- 12-month on-site check-up with lab ‘health’ report
We worked closely with ATOS at every stage of planning the lab’s construction.
- Meeting with all of the stakeholders including company directors to ensure everyone’s requirements of the project were understood and considered
- Helped ATOS understand the types of testing that might take place in their lab; from testing of websites on a desktop computer, to mobile/tablet devices, to photo systems or scanned documents
- We met with the architects, IT team, building managers and head of UX a number of times to help define the sizes and layouts of the lab, viewing room and design spaces
- Made recommendations around soundproofing, lighting & environmental controls, accessibility, one-way mirror usage, furniture and power and data locations
- Worked with the internal AV team to ensure the lab’s AV system would be compatible with the building system in order to allow additional viewing of testing elsewhere in the building
- We made a number of site visits during the physical construction phase and provided feedback and advice
- We worked with the Head of UX to define which design packages they would be using to produce work and the supplied hardware and software to facilitate this
- Colaborated with the IT team to identify and mitigate any security concerns or challenges around installing an externally supplied PC onto the ATOS network. We also helped them spec a machine for them to supply internally as a redundant PC for backup use
- We provided detailed instructional and guidance documentation around using the hardware and software in the lab and then worked with ATOS copywriters to transfer this into their internal documentation templates
- Provided hiring facilities for additional eye tracking and testing equipment for other areas of the business while the lab was under construction
- We supplied, installed and tested the lab PC equipment with eye tracker and all required software
- We supplied and installed an AV system including remotely controllable HD cameras and microphones, viewing screens, picture-in-picture system and easy to use recording solution
- Held weekly catch up meetings throughout the planning, construction and delivery stage to ensure all stakeholders were aware of the next steps and ensure the project ran smoothly
- We provided a day of training for UX team staff members on using the eye tracker, AV system and design studio PCs. We also handed over the installer packages, serial numbers and license details for all the supplied software to the IT team
- We provided 6 month telephone and email support for users of the lab and further advice around licensing and software upgrades - with the option to extend support for as long as required
- We provided a scheduled 12 month on-site lab ‘health’ checkup and report document containing recommendations
Viewing Studio and UX Lab at Atos
The lab and design studio space have been used weekly since they launched in June 2014. A large number of projects have been conducted in that time on desktop, mobile/tablet and interview testing types.
The lab allows colleagues from all departments (not just designers) to come together and watch the user experience testing as it happens. Getting these people together in one room with such rich insight into customer behaviour inspires many fruitful discussions and conversations which have led onto new ways of doing things.
Since the lab opened all user experience research has been carried out in-house meaning there have been no additional costs for external lab hire; so the lab is helping to pay for itself right from the start.
The health check carried out on the lab after 12 months showed everything was working well and provided some guidance around storage management and microphone placement optimisation. The team at ATOS have been in touch recently looking for quotes for additional eye trackers and software licenses to expand their capabilities in other offices in the UK.