BBC user types research

Usability | February 2017

colourful illustration of simple cutout style human figuresCreative data visualisation will help support staff with better systems and tools

Insights into how the BBC’s diverse workforce collaborates, coordinates and communicates at work is pivotal to ensuring positive user experiences. We were hired to conduct user research to further this understanding.

System Concepts came in when we had very limited data on BBC employees. What they have delivered is a useful starting point for future UX work.”
Dr Karen Yunqiu Li, Senior Human Computer Interaction Specialist, BBC


Our brief was to provide user research insights into the needs, behaviours and environmental factors experienced the BBC workforce. We knew that the user types research would generate a lot of data, so from the outset we saw creative data visualisation as key to communicating insights effectively.

  1. Quantitative online survey
  2. 7 day diary study
  3. One to one interviews
  4. User type and map development

The completed surveys revealed different user patterns and categories. We selected people for a diary study, and then interviewed a subset. After quantitative data analysis, our creative design team got to work, visualising 5 user types with maps.


Through our creative data visualisation, user types and maps enable the BBC Enterprise Systems IT team to rethink the use cases in particular business areas.

Dr Karen Yunqiu Li of the BBC says, “We used it as a conversational piece to show people the starting point of multiple use cases, that they can build on top of the modes of working.”

Paul Thorpe, our Creative Services Director, summarises, “We wanted to produce designs that would enhance the data findings, make the 5 user types meaningful and easy to communicate, and capture the imaginations of those with the power to implement change.”

Speech bubbleImprove usability with creative data visualisation
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