Senior UX Research Program Manager – Inclusive Research (DE&I)

Microsoft

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About the job

At Microsoft, our mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more, and now more than ever, it is critical for UX Research to ensure the full breadth of humans are represented in our work. Inclusive Research is an Experiences + Devices (E+D) division-wide effort to change the way UXR works at the discipline level to drive diversity, equity, and inclusion into our product making decisions. If you care deeply about the opportunity for research to bring a truly diverse range of voices and identities into the product making process by decentering the historically dominant populations, then read on. We want to hear from you.

We are seeking a strong leader with deep expertise in Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DE&I) to join our multi-disciplinary team of more than 65 user researchers, planners and product/program managers who work on a breadth of experiences and programs across E+D. In this role, you will lead and drive the new Inclusive Research effort (started Fall 2020) by: evaluating and improving work-to date, defining the best practices, guidance, resources, and new ways of working necessary for Inclusive Research, activating multiple Research & Design teams across E+D to adopt this work, and establishing, implementing, and operationalizing the processes and mechanisms needed to support broad and lasting culture change across Research & Design and beyond.

The Inclusive Research initiative was born out of multiple grass roots efforts to identify opportunities for Microsoft to impact racial inequities in areas we control; in this case in our products and how we seek customer input. Our initial efforts to evolve UXR to be more inclusive have focused on increasing the participation of historically excluded populations as defined by race and ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, and socioeconomic status. Going forward, this role will take the lead on defining the plan to address further dimensions of diversity, in addition to driving the adoption and implementation of that guidance across the UXR community. The ideal candidate for this role is deeply passionate about DE&I, curious, and able to bring a practical, experiment driven approach to problem solving. This position requires strong program management and change management skills, the ability to work across a broad range of stakeholders, teams, and roles, and ideally some experience with UXR in a tech and/or product making environment. This role will be successful in part by being able to develop and hold a strong point of view that is informed by the latest thinking from experts in DE&I and an understanding of the UX Research discipline, combined with market, user, and research insights; and to then build on this knowledge to define program direction and best practices while constantly integrating and balancing internal/external community feedback and perspectives as the Inclusive Research program evolves.

In this role, you will take on complex and nuanced topics and work to define and drive near and long-term investments. You will work closely with other user researchers, planners, and program managers to ensure that we are addressing the most critical researcher needs and opportunities. You will leverage the whole of your experience and bring in your research experiences

We are especially looking for someone who wants to learn, grow, and define new ways of working. If you enjoy being a part of a diverse team, embrace a growth mindset, have a track record of delivering results, and light up collaborating with other planners, researchers, designers, product managers and engineers, then you will feel at home on this awesome team.

 

Responsibilities

  • Build awareness, enthusiasm, momentum, and commitment to Inclusive Research Principles across E+D primarily, and Microsoft as a whole, to evolve the way UXR is done.
  • Define and execute the evolution of Inclusive Research’s scope and roadmap to address future dimensions of historically excluded populations. Key to this accountability will be identifying and prioritizing researcher needs, pain points, and product opportunities.
  • Establish practical guidance and best practice resources defining the new ways of working in alignment with the principles of Inclusive Research.
  • Identify and build ongoing learning resources specific to Inclusive Research to meet researchers where they are on their individual DE&I journeys and support their practical abilities to do the work.
  • Work with Microsoft’s key partners and research suppliers to establish commitment to and functional support of the Inclusive Research methods and approaches.
  • Define and drive the adoption of Inclusive Research success metrics across E+D UXR teams, both individually for teams and for Inclusive Research , including establishing the processes and mechanisms to collect and report on those metrics at the aggregate level.
  • Operationalize the change management process to shift current ways of working towards Inclusive Research adoption.

Qualifications

What does it take?

  • Deep passion and commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion and demonstrated success in supporting organizational development and/or programs in these areas.
  • Experience with UXR and/or experience leading research studies, ideally with hands-on industry experience and a related educational degree.
  • Ability to articulate a vision and areas of investment for a diverse set of stakeholders, plot the strategy and programs needed to realize the vision, sequence milestones, and create a plan for measuring success along the way.
  • Proven planning/program management skills along with confidence presenting to and interacting with executives and engaging audiences online.
  • Approachable servant leader with a passion for coaching others.
  • Ability to listen, empathize and represent the needs and perspectives of a diverse set of stakeholders.
  • Experience with building a coalition of experts and resources across time-zone distributed teams.
  • Comfortable with ambiguity, and the ability to create clarity, generate energy, and deliver success.
  • Proven track record of influencing without authority, especially with stakeholders who are not co-located.
  • A lifelong learner who is ready and able to acquire new skills as demands of the role evolve.

Other Requirements

  • 5+ years’ experience in envisioning, building, implementing and/or supporting Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion programs.
  • 5+ years of hands-on research and/or product planning experience, with demonstrated skill in collecting and analyzing qualitative data to improve plans and UX in a technology industry setting
  • An advanced degree in human factors, psychology, market research or related field, or a BA/BS in one of these fields with significant industry experience

If the above sounds like you, we cannot wait to talk to you!

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Microsoft is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, ancestry, color, family or medical care leave, gender identity or expression, genetic information, marital status, medical condition, national origin, physical or mental disability, political affiliation, protected veteran status, race, religion, sex (including pregnancy), sexual orientation, or any other characteristic protected by applicable laws, regulations and ordinances. We also consider qualified applicants regardless of criminal histories, consistent with legal requirements. If you need assistance and/or a reasonable accommodation due to a disability during the application or the recruiting process, please send a request via the Accommodation request form.

Benefits/perks listed below may vary depending on the nature of your employment with Microsoft and the country where you work

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