Judge’s Q&A 2017: Paul Annett

Judge’s Q&A 2017: Paul Annett

Judge: Paul Annett
Role: Head of Digital Customer Experience, Saga

Do you have a favourite app & website in terms of the design and user experience?
It’s an obvious and boring cliché, but I can’t dispute the usage data on my phone which shows Twitter as being the most-used app by a long way. It’s a good example of the UX being all about the content. Twitter’s made such a huge impact over the last decade, and I’m privileged to have helped shape that in a very small way while I was there. 

Which industries, in your opinion, tend to deliver the worst user experiences, and why?
Financial services. There’s a lot of bureaucracy in heavily regulated industries, which makes for arduous sign-off processes in many traditional companies. It takes a lot to push through to make change happen.

What has been the greatest game changer in the UX and usability sectors over the past 10 years?
Undoubtedly smartphone adoption. Is there any question? Now ask what it’ll be in the coming 10 years!

What do you think are the biggest challenges companies face utilising UX?
UX is hot right now, but by hiring a UX designer or team risks absolving everybody else of responsibility, when it’s a shared challenge – from the speed of the servers to the readability of the copy, it’s all part of the user experience. As a UX practitioner, your role is about bringing everybody on the journey, which companies aren’t always expecting.

Do you have any UX pet peeves?
Not showing the correct HTML5  keyboard for the input type. I filled in a form today that needed several numbers typed in, one per form field. As if that wasn’t nasty enough, I was presented with the standard keyboard (with no numbers) each time.

If you could have any superpower what would it be and why?
The superpower to instantly and effortlessly tidy up our house. With two boys, three cats, and a new puppy, I need this!