RITE Method – when and how to use it?

RITE testing is a test method for finding and correcting as many bugs as possible, in as little time as possible. Do you want to test and improve your product quickly? Check whether it is right for you.

What is RITE in UX?

If you run your own company, or your responsibility in the organization is product development, you definitely want to see effects of your work quickly. Imagine that you want to engage support and you find two experts with completely different approaches.

One declares: “I’ve identified all the problems you might have with this product. They only need to be solved now,” while the other says, “I’ve identified the most common problems and solved many of them. The product is better than it was.”

Who will you engage for the next project? The answer seems obvious – quickly solving the most pressing problems has more value than identifying them all. And that’s where the RITE methodology comes in – RITE stands for Rapid Iterative Testing and Evaluation.

RITE Method

While the method of conducting user testing itself is standard, the specificity of this method is to immediately use the information collected (from the participants) and optimize the product before the next iteration of testing.

Such a dynamic formula makes it possible to improve the prototype on the fly and remove errors during the UX research. It is a source of great satisfaction for the design and research team, which can see the progress of their actions and measure it.

Above all, however, such activity brings great value to the business. Thanks to RITE you will be able to define “the best” option very quickly (compared to other methods), which will allow you to save a lot of money. The effectiveness of using this methodology is confirmed by case studies of such companies as Microsoft (work on the Age of Empires II game) or Oracle (Bias & Mayhew, 2005).

What do you need to accomplish a study using the RITE testing methodology?

Conducting research in this methodology requires some sophistication in terms of logistics and coordination. Not every organization can afford to involve a large number of stakeholders in a study that often lasts several days. At the same time, this involvement is essential to RITE – and therefore its unique value.

Do you want to learn about other research methods?

What to keep in mind when deciding on RITE testing:

1. Teams

The research and project team
For the project to have a chance to take off, you need to onboard:

  • UX designer (or even more, if we are talking about a complex product) – who is responsible for preparing the prototype and applying corrections after testing sessions.
  • Researcher – who prepares research scenarios, deals with (or coordinates) the recruitment process, and finally conducts the research.
  • Project Manager – wgo “clips” the process. Manages all communication with the client and is responsible for logistics.

* Additionally, the person who takes notes and observes the research, and then facilitates the mini-workshops before the next session brings also a lot of value. This is when a decision must be made on what changes the UX Designer should make before the next iteration. In optimal conditions, this role can be filled by a PM or a second designer, for example.

From our experience:

In one of our projects using the RITE methodology, the research and design sessions on the client side included: designers, marketers, analysts, and even management. Most of them showed up sporadically – one day for a few hours. Throughout the week we were also accompanied by a permanent “expert” core. Co-creation was crucial for the quick validation of ideas and ensuring product team focus.

Need to validate an idea with an interdisciplinary team?

2. Location

A suitable space is needed to implement RITE. In addition to a research room (with a Venetian mirror or camera with a monitor to allow the team to observe the research), you also need space to conduct a mini workshop and space for designers to discuss and rapidly implement changes.

3. Time

  • 1-? Days – preparation of concept/product for research,
  • 1-2 days – preparation of research scenarios,
  • 1- ? days – recruitment of participants,
  • 1 week – research and project hackathon consisting of research and project team + clients + respondents,
  • 2-3 days – preparing the final report + presentation.

The iterative testing and revision process itself is usually estimated at one week. However, it is important to take into account that the time required to prepare and summarize the results depends on the complexity of the product. What is particularly important in RITE is the inclusion of Plan B… Always!

4. Daily activities
During the research-project week, the team (on both sides!) must engage in some ongoing ritual of activities:

RITE research - EDISONDA
  • observation of the respondent,
  • taking notes,
  • participating in ad mini-workshops,
  • prioritization,
  • implementing changes.

And so on with each subject, day after day, for a week. The active support of the expert team on the client-side is extremely important here. So get ready for an intense and demanding time!

Why use RITE?

RITE is a powerful methodology. Its unique value is that you can see the outcomes of your improvements immediately, allowing you to consciously manage the progress of your optimization. Additionally, RITE allows you to plan further changes and their prioritization in a structured way.

From our experience:

The entire preparation-research-design process is very engaging, intensive, and at first glance seems expensive. Ultimately, however, it allows you to test more options at once, which can be a source of considerable savings. In contrast to traditional research that identifies what is wrong and possibly recommends what to improve, RITE improves things right away. And it does so over several iterations.

Our experience shows that although the level of comprehensive engagement between the two parties is exhaustive, the value of collaboration is undeniable. To quote one client at the end of a research and project week: “I only want to research in RITE from now on”.

Who is RITE for and when to adopt it?

Good RITE research requires meticulous tailoring. Many factors need to be taken into account – from the complexity of the product to the readiness to really intense collaboration.

RITE will work well in:

  • large corporations and crawling start-ups, i.e. wherever there is an awareness that sometimes a larger one-time investment at an early stage can save money and help avoid more expensive corrective initiatives at later stages.
  • testing the concept of a new product and optimization of a running system will enable instant discovery and fixing obvious problems (serving obvious instant solutions – e.g. changing texts). It will also provide a basis for a methodical solution to more complex problems.
  • teams that like dynamics, close collaboration, and intensity. Open to experimentation and making mistakes together. Such teams can quickly develop good and proven solutions while gaining great satisfaction from working together.
  • companies that have already used or are planning to use other methods of creating innovations, such as the Discovery Sprint.

This RITE sounds right, doesn’t it?

Worth reading:

R.G.Bias & D.J. Mayhew. “Cost-Justifying Usability. An Update for an Internet Age”, 2005.