This week we looked at quantitative metrics versus qualitative metrics. After exploring Chipotle.com I chose to look at the site using a time on task metric. This type of testing provides information on how quickly (or not so quickly) a user performs specific tasks or parts of a task. The data is quantitative and describes a couple of different things to testers once the data has been organized.
In my experience stakeholder always want some portion of quantitative data and they respond well when you have lots of participants. The difficult part of sharing quantitative data with stakeholders is to format, organize and display the data in a way that it makes sense and is easy to understand. The stakeholders at my job are the dean, two associate deans and the head of my department. All of these people have zero time to spend reading reports, listening to presentations or trying to decipher data to make their decision.
In a couple of projects I have worked on where I needed data to back up my case I found quick emails with graphs created from spreadsheets of data work wonders. In one particular case our department wanted to request funding for more laptops and some tablets to check out at the circulation desk of our main library. The desk passed out surveys to students and we complied the results to share with the associate deans. The head of the department was able to get funding for new laptops and order tablets in response to the graphical display of survey data. Without quantitative data I do not believe we would have had such a positive response to the request.