At IQ, we take a different approach to strategy – one that combines multiple disciplines so that we approach challenges from all angles. Having User Experience (UX) on the team means that we have a true consumer advocate to balance traditional strategists’ focus on achieving business goals. Arielle is a key member of the strategy team – extremely smart, always encouraging, and hyper-focused on building the best experiences possible.
So, get to know Arielle. The interview below gives you a glimpse into who she is, but you’ll be even more impressed after working with her.
For the official record, what is your name and your title at IQ?
Arielle Cason – UX Researcher and Architect
Why did you get into UX?
My grandmother had a car wreck which resulted in a long-term brain injury. Some technology became very difficult for her to understand. She started asking me questions that made me see things through a different lens, and I realized that so much technology really doesn’t make sense, not just for her but for so many people. Her experience drives me to make technology simpler and more accessible.
Tell me about a project or accomplishment that you consider to be the most significant so far in your career?
At a previous job working for a wireless telecom I conducted a usability study and discovered a large gap that prohibited users for making adjustments to their account online. Due to this discovery I was able to present findings to the VP-level and affect changes beneficial for end users.
If you could work on any type of project what would you do and why?
Help young women learn technology in countries where girls are not valued equally to help them create a future for themselves.
What are your thoughts on UX sitting in strategy?
I think it’s great! To me, UX is less about the specific elements on a page and more about the user’s path from learning that something exists through utilizing it in their own lives. That’s strategic.
Where will UX be in 2020?
“UX designer” is a catch-all title. It could include the job duties of business analysts, product designers, information architects, interface designers, researchers, statistical analysts, data visualization designers, and so many more. But as companies become underserved and disillusioned with hiring the wrong kind of UX designer for their business need, both UX professionals and companies will be more specific in describing UX roles with more appropriate titles.
What is your favorite aspect of working at IQ?
The accepting atmosphere and the unique people.
What is something you’ve learned in the last week?
A content management system’s internal-facing interface can deeply effect the consumer-facing UX. If a site’s backend is difficult to navigate, content might not be entered in the best place for the user to find it or content might not be entered in the most efficient format. A confusing backend will also deter companies from updating the site, so stale content sticks around. Consumers see stale content and think the company isn’t reputable. A CMS has a huge impact on the end user, even if it seems to only affect employees internally.
What are you most passionate about in your life, and why?
Advocacy is my word – Advocating for the user, advocating for accessibility, advocating for rescue dogs, advocating for the disenfranchised segments of our population.
What are a few sites you visit at least once a week?
Littlebigdetails and Medium
What is one thing you never leave the house without?
I’m not going to say phone, everyone says that… Protein, because I don’t want to get hungry.
If Georgia Tech and UGA had to fight how would they fight?
UGA would bring football players and Tech would bring robots. (Side note from the interviewer: Arielle is currently finishing her Masters degree in human computer interaction from Georgia Tech while the interviewer attended The University of Georgia, the state’s oldest and flagship institution. Go Dawgs!)
Tea or Coffee?
Math or English?
Board games or video games?
Checkers or Chess?
I’ve never learned chess and I’m sure I would like it better. But, checkers until then.
Cats or Dogs?
Kittens AND puppies