Hear Me Out is a Brooklyn-based consulting firm for early-stage startups led by principal Benjamin Jackson. Benjamin and Hear Me Out consult with fast growing startups to design lightweight processes that keep things moving without slowing people down. In Benjamin’s words, “we exist to make people feel awesome about going to work.”
User research is an important part of how Benjamin works with clients to identify and fix gaps in their people processes. With each client, he conducts dozens of interviews, organizes engagement surveys for employees, and observes people during their onboarding process at his client’s offices. Identifying patterns across these different sources is a critical part of his analysis process.
We are focusing more and more on embedding research best practices into our clients’ day to day.
Because Hear Me Out works with startups, timelines are often much shorter than for larger research teams working with later-stage clients. Clients need quick turnaround on insights so they can move on to fixing the issues that come up during research.
Similar issues come up often, so Benjamin is constantly reviewing data from past projects to find trends that might apply to the current studies. Combing through research notes spread across multiple sources was tedious, time-consuming work.
How Dovetail helps
It’s where most of the hard work happens.
Dovetail acts as a searchable research repository allowing Benjamin to aggregate, store, and analyze data from multiple sources like engagement surveys, onboarding and exit interviews, research notes, and insights.
With Dovetail, Benjamin highlights patterns across multiple pieces of data. He then creates insights that he uses to report back to the startup’s management team, along with suggestions for process improvements.
I’m used to the old-school spreadsheet-based approach. Dovetail is much faster and easier to use, and the analytics are miles better than anything I could hack together in Excel.
Benjamin pulls transcripts into Dovetail and tags them with themes around employees’ challenges or suggestions. He sorts the tags by frequency and looks for any that span all or most transcripts. As he sees interesting trends, he pulls out quotes that back up the core idea and copies them to a new insight.
The end result is a nicely presented board of all insights from the project, with each insight connected to the relevant source material with quotes, images, and files.
I had checked out a bunch of competing products, and it was obvious from the first week using Dovetail that it was way more polished and usable than anything else.