Polaris — Research Ops by WeWork
Dave Malouf

Dave, great summary.

I love the direction of these conversations. I’ve worked a little on my own team’s approaches over the years, but have stumbled a lot around the tools.

This approach feels very similar to something I’ve tried a couple times, but with a critical conceptual difference. What I’ve tried is a common platform to store data, and NOT “insights.”

The reason I focused on data itself was trying to bridge the gap between PM, eng, and design in decision making. In agile development, I’ve found all conversations with customers have a mix of bug prioritization, feature requests, usability feedback, and stories about use or attempted use. The last couple elements don’t constitute singular research projects, but in aggregate can provide very useful nuggets that keep us guessing from scratch on new projects.

Those conversations are a standard business practice and may not naturally include a researcher. And on a shoestring research budget, having easy access this information has made the easy things easy and allowed research to focus on the most high priority projects without sacrificing user-centered decision making.

I would be interested in hearing your thoughts/experience around collecting data from beyond the formal research initiatives, the value of democratizing the insights over the raw data, and if you think Polaris could address those concerns as well.

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