Empowering digital teams.

Man reading book in library stacks

At a Glance

Aquent Studios showed the New York Public Library how to get the most out of its UX operations and team to deliver greater impact across its entire digital portfolio.

Capabilities Engaged

  • Design Operations
  • Organization Design
  • UX Maturity Assessment
Woman on ladder in front of shelves of books

Project Overview

Challenge

Since its founding in 1895, the New York Public Library has unwaveringly served millions of New Yorkers, no matter the circumstances. COVID-19 brought new challenges for the city and its patrons, and NYPL shifted gears to rapidly expand its digital offerings, including e-book access, online learning support for students, remote research services, online programs, and virtual one-on-one job support. NYPL digital teams were stretched like never before, and among them was a relatively new UX team that was struggling to deliver and was at a breaking point. Unfortunately, NYPL didn’t have the in-house expertise to remedy their UX situation.

Approach

NYPL turned to the Aquent Studios team to evaluate their UX operations and recommend a plan of action. We consulted with NYPL leadership, product teams, and stakeholders to assess their current state and recommend an organizational plan that would better meet their needs and challenges. This plan helped align skills, address process gaps, and create a solid foundation for scaling their UX operations. In less than four weeks, we delivered key insights and recommendations that enabled powerful organizational changes.

What We Did

Design Operations

Make the team more effective

Conducted a full UX maturity assessment to evaluate current state capabilities across UX operations, processes, and skill sets. From these insights and product team needs, we provided actionable recommendations, including short- and long-term steps to help NYPL UX have more impact, gain greater agile adoption, and accelerate rapid prototyping, user testing, and iteration.

Build for the future

Provided guidance to address lingering talent acquisition and retention pain points through career pathing, internships, community of practice rituals, and professional development opportunities. In addition, we identified five critical focus areas to invest in resources, coaching, and process improvement.

From confusion to confidence

This engagement equipped NYPL leadership with answers, insights, and a path forward to help their UX and digital product teams perform at their best—which enabled them to deliver digital services and products to their patrons faster and better than ever before. From confusion and uncertainty to confidence and speed, Aquent Studios’ UX consulting delivered.

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