U.S. Patent and Trademark Office - PE2E

What was the business problem? 

A smooth USPTO examination process was obstructed by disconnected databases, applications, and interfaces. Examiners were using considerable amounts of their precious time wrangling information from several disconnected sources---leading to confusion, mistakes, and a massive backlog. 

What was the business objective?

To bring all the flows and arms of data into one central application so that examiners could more easily access and cross-reference information.  

How did you ensure it was met? 

Tested the usability of the platform in order to describe how the system performed in meeting the needs of the examiners. These insights then informed the backlog of experience improvements to be made. 

At what points in the process did you involve users? 

The large part of what the examiners do and when those actions are performed was documented by a third party. That information provided the basis by which features were developed and prioritized. I was hired to create and execute a usability testing regiment that would measure the progress of how the system performed for participants. We held bi-monthly testings that investigated how examiners behaved when they used the developing system. These testings required planning the test, forming the questions/tasks, executing the interviews, and delivering recommendations to senior leadership on the project. 

I also worked with USPTO product management on features, use cases, and wireframes.

Usability Testing Manual - I used Morae as the main source of information during the usability testing sessions. Since the lab and tests needed to be set up in a consistent manner I documented the step by step process to set up the lab, Morae, and develop questions. The result was a faster set up of the lab and testing without worrying about mucking up the analytics. 

Usability Testing Manual - I used Morae as the main source of information during the usability testing sessions. Since the lab and tests needed to be set up in a consistent manner I documented the step by step process to set up the lab, Morae, and develop questions. The result was a faster set up of the lab and testing without worrying about mucking up the analytics. 

Test Plan - Test plans for the federal government are known to be incredibly detailed in their documentation. I much prefer a leaner process that is focused on early and often results. However, there are some benefits to writing a detailed test plan that sets expectations across the board about what type of information would be delivered and how. 

Test Plan - Test plans for the federal government are known to be incredibly detailed in their documentation. I much prefer a leaner process that is focused on early and often results. However, there are some benefits to writing a detailed test plan that sets expectations across the board about what type of information would be delivered and how. 

Test Report - In each test report I would describe the issues examiners would encounter. Later, I worked with designers, developers, and product owners on how to more effectively design the experience. 

Test Report - In each test report I would describe the issues examiners would encounter. Later, I worked with designers, developers, and product owners on how to more effectively design the experience. 

Sample UI screen

Sample UI screen