I have been appointed a Product Specialist for a web based product that is similar to a CMS for spatial data (Flex front end). - This product is in dire need of some UX-TLC

I have been reading a lot of posts on here recently to try and increase my knowledge around UX.
I have also raised these two questions and got some amazing answers that I will discuss with the developers and try and incorporate this into our product.

I am learning a lot from these answers, and although I am far from being able to answer any Qs on here, I really am impressed by the well thought out answers that I have been getting.

I have a couple of Qs, but I think it makes sense to put them all into this one Q.

Q1 - Is there a tag to use when asking for specific advice around UX on my own sites?

Q2 - Is there any concerns over Spec Work?
I do not want to overstep my welcome but as long as I construct well thought out questions that are very specific and include screens/screencasts, and give rep/allocate answers and show my appreciation = is this ok? Where do you draw the line? I can assure you that I am learning from the answers on here.

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2 Answers 2

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Glad you're finding value in our answers :-)

There isn't a specific tag for UX for your own sites and I don't think that's what tags are meant for. Think of tags as a classification you can use that helps other people find answers to similar problems in the future. It's also a good way to alert experts in that particular area that you need help as people can subscribe to tags and will sometimes only pay attention to those (though I admit this is less the case with UX designers than programmers as by nature we're required to know a bit about a lot of things).

As for spec work, I wouldn't worry too much about that. The advice people give you here is freely given because the answerer feels they should invest the time to share it. Of course badges and reputation factor into it but mostly people contribute because they enjoy doing it. As long as you're not asking someone to invest dozens of hours into helping you out, I don't think it's a problem.

However, I do think your product could use a UX designer to give it some TLC, as you say. Getting answers from UX.SE is a great first step, but I think we'd all agree that ultimately you want a dedicated expert who is able to dedicate time to solving your problems structurally. If you do go down that path, then yes, please do pay them! :-)

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Yes, we are putting together a business case to get some UX expert in. But facing some friction from the people that hold the purse strings. Even getting some graphics work done can be painful. Maybe ill ask a Q on how to go about convincing Upper Mgmt on the need for UX TLC –  Simon Aug 16 '11 at 12:43
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@Simon There's already a few questions of that ilk such as How do you persuade an organization to value UX. No denying it can be tough going though! –  Roger Attrill Aug 16 '11 at 20:11

A couple of things to bear in mind, and these apply to all Stack Exchange sites.

  1. The site is supposed to be a place for experts to ask questions of each other. Beginner questions are good as long as there are enough experts around to answer them and the site isn't overrun with beginner questions so that the experts get bored and leave. (However, I don't think UX is currently in danger of falling into that vicious cycle. If anything, we're not getting enough questions right now; beginner questions are much more likely to help than harm.)

  2. A good question should elicit answers that also help others (just as you're benefiting now from reading other questions and answers). That's the primary goal of Stack Exchange, and why answering questions isn't spec work.

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