Marc Rettig & Jenna Date

From Data to Difference

Many companies are investing in user research, but few know how to ensure that data makes a difference in the end product. Too often, data turns to dust- research reports sit on a shelf and product changing user stories fail to influence the daily decisions of the product team.

In this workshop, Marc and Jenna will share tools and techniques to help research 'live' in the product team and make a difference in product outcomes. In this fast-paced, activity-driven workshop, you will practice data collection, analysis and synthesis, and finally set goals for your team to integrate a realistic empathy towards users' experience into your company culture.

Marc Rettig Bio

Marc is a co-founder of Fit Associates, LLC. Fit works with its clients' teams and managers to make products and processes better. Fit's clients include Microsoft, Comcast, Whirlpool, SAP, and Respironics.

After a first career as a software developer, Marc is now thirteen years into a second career as a designer, educator and a researcher. His personal client list includes BBC, the U.S. Army, Crate and Barrel, Microsoft, Allstate, Caterpillar, Diamond Partners, and Texas Instruments. He has taught both lecture and studio courses at Carnegie Mellon's Graduate School of Design (where he was the 2003 Nierenberg Distinguished Chair of Design) and the Institute of Design, IIT in Chicago.

Marc served as Chief Experience Officer of the pace-setting user experience consultancy HannaHodge, where he was responsible for the firm's user-centered process, team culture, and research initiatives. He was a Director of User Experience at Cambridge Technology Partners. Prior to that he was a consultant with seeSpace, VP of Design for Digital Knowledge Assets, and a Senior Architect in Andersen Consulting's Advanced Technologies Group.

Marc has an undergraduate degree in Anthropology and Linguistics, and completed requirements for a Master's in Computational Linguistics at New York University. Marc frequently speaks and conducts hands-on workshops in industry and academic settings around the world. He currently serves on the advisory boards of UXNet, The Interaction Design Association, and Rosenfeld Media.

Jenna Date Bio

Jenna is a co-founder of Fit Associates, LLC. She is an experienced researcher and interaction designer whose work spans a wide range of products. As the UI Design Lead for Siemens Medical Solutions, she explored the lives, activities, and communication patterns among hospital employees. She then conducted weekly tests of new solutions as part of a design process of her own devising. She is
experienced in team process development, group facilitation, user research, usability evaluation, concept development and evaluation, interaction and interface design, and rapid prototyping.

As an interaction designer at MAYA Viz, Jenna worked on collaborative visual software for the military. She conducted user research on military bases and military exercises, to determine the needs of soldiers in the field. She then created visual and interaction designs based on those insights, for manipulating large data sets, tracking movements of people and equipment and collaborating across distances in support of critical decision-making.

Jenna has worked on consumer research, usability and design for Texas Instruments (graphing calculators), BBC (interfaces for children), the Carnegie Museum of Art (prototypes of future devices for museum visitors), and the Carnegie Robotics Institute (robot assistant for the elderly). She received her Master's in Human-Computer Interaction from Carnegie Mellon University.