There are about 750 UX designers and researchers working at Microsoft. People in the UX community are often very surprised to hear about it. I think part of it is we haven't given our designers enough opportunities to talk about what they do and what's it like to work as designers at Microsoft. During the Interaction’09 Conference, I had a chance to chat with Lada Gorlenko, who is a UX Research Manager at the Unified Communication team.
In my 18 minutes conversation with Lada below, I asked her about:
- What are your main responsibilities as a UX Research Manager? How is the team organized?
- What are the challenges in designing communication software in large corporations?
- How does user research fit into the overall product development?
- How do UX Researchers work with UX Designers and the rest of the team?
- How does it like to work as a UX Professional at Microsoft?
- What contributes to a great UX Designer/Researcher?
Lada Gorlenko manages a User Research team in the Office Communications Group (OCG) at Microsoft, working on the next generation of collaboration products for business use. In the past, Lada worked on a wide variety of projects, from researching cross-cultural communication and cognitive limitations of mobility to designing and evaluating virtual reality and self-service interfaces. She is a devoted member of IxDA, the Interaction Design Association, and a proud “UX generalist”.