Tom Howells

User Experience Architect

OUP: My Account / Account Services

Screenshot of OUP's My Account profile page as viewed on desktop
My Account profile page as viewed on desktop

I am the UX Lead on My Account and Account Services, centralised account and student enrolment services for Oxford University Press’ digital platforms.

I work in an Agile team alongside an interaction designer, and am jointly responsible for:

This is a new strategic platform for Oxford University Press. One of our objectives is to save teachers time in their set-up and teaching using OUP’s digital learning material. This requires integration with platforms that deliver this content.

We adopted the following UX process for working on this product:

I faced multiple challenges working on this platform, many of which related to legacy systems and the existing, fragmented nature of OUP’s digital ecosystem, few of which shared consistent designs or similar user journeys. I have been working with other product and UX teams to introduce standards and consistency across platforms, either at the point of integration or as new products are introduced.

We also discovered the limitations and trade-offs of adopting a single authentication solution, such as issues with integrating a web-based Sign In page with native mobile apps. I am working with the Solutions Architect to establish an approach that should fulfil user needs whilst following the strategic objectives and security requirements across multiple channels.

While user research was conducted at the start of the project, ideally this should have become an ongoing activity happening in parallel as the product progressed. We conducted semi-regular usability testing, but I am campaigning for this to become a more frequent activity across all Agile projects, and for tools to be introduced to reduce the effort involved.

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