Categories
Data research

Taxonomy of research reports. How should work with research data?

View the original post

This topic is one of the first steps in the democratization of research processes in your company. I will talk about the taxonomy (or in this case, you can call it «navigation») of research results within the repository.

What it is?

It is an internal, orderly and regulated architecture of research databases. In simple words, the names of all the folders in which you store previous studies are sorted and divided into groups, the description of which exists and does not raise questions.

The bottom line is that every employee in the companies clearly knows where he can see the results of past research on the topic that he needs in the current moment — without additional questions and unnecessary communications.

Why is this needed?

  1. Transparent communication: fewer repetitive questions from colleagues;
  2. Less time spent digging in the repository to find the result of research on a particular feature, which was carried out a year ago;
  3. An internal, replenishing repository of research knowledge, which is regulated and operates independently of employees who can leave the organization at any time;
  4. Information and research results become more accessible to colleagues, which leads to democratization of research and dissemination of results to a wide number of departments;

How to do it?

Start by designing the correct navigation of the research files. There are 3 stages — division into levels, hierarchy and names.

Splitting into levels:

When separating, use only 2 main levels: global and local.

Global is elements that exist independently of other factors. That is, it is something that exists independently of the research tasks; these elements are constants.

Local are elements that are added based on research tasks / projects. And these items can be modified, edited and created based on research or product needs, these items are variables.

Hierarchy:

Let’s take a look at this with an example. Let’s say you’re a grocery store owner and want to clean up your research processes.

We define global levels based on the most correct ones: Division into business verticals —> delivery and offline direction.

2 verticals: Delivery and Offline

In turn, we begin to delve deeper into each vertical and add new global levels based on the elements that belong to the verticals. Delivery —> add the global level: CJM-users —> add all the elements of your CJM there, I got it like this.

Next Global Levels CJM of Users

Next, we work with each one, for example I will take «Evaluation and choice of solutions». From this level, we can create another global level —> website.

And on its basis, we begin to form local levels based on research or product tasks. We would like to conduct a study of how our users perceive the product card on the site —> create a local level: the perception of the card of product.

New local level is Card of Product

In this case, the item «Product card» — can be attributed to both the global and local levels. There is no strict separation, everything is very flexible.

This is how we do it with all directions. First, we define all global levels, and then, we begin to form local ones, based on research and product tasks within your company.

Names:

The title of research reports is very important. Their most important task is to ensure that each stakeholder in the company can find the information that he needs quickly and without additional communications.

Accordingly, when developing the names of research data, you need to rely on 2 important criteria:

  1. Uniform type of names;
    For example: {date}_{platform}_{research method}_{name of research}_{name of researcher who done this research}.
  2. Clear and consistent names within all stakeholders and colleagues;

This is very important, as it determines how often your data will be used. If it is difficult to perceive them, then there is no point in doing this. Be sure to think about how you can make it as simple as possible.

What’s next?

After such a system is developed, it is desirable to describe everything at once and create a certain taxonomy dictionary, where, at a minimum, the entire hierarchy and description of all global levels will be described and presented.

Conclusions:

The development of a navigation system (taxonomy) is a very powerful tool and one of the first steps towards democratizing research within your organization.


Taxonomy of research reports. How should work with research data? was originally published in UX Planet on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.