User Experience (UX), lean experimentation and agile working specialist
"I got excited about new ways of working when I realised they gave me the tools to deliver powerful outcomes."
I started my working life in digital marketing and communications at Autism West Midlands. My proudest moment there was creating the first ever social media platform for autistic people and their families. We employed autistic people to create the content, giving one person the experience they needed to get back into work. The platform even brought together a couple who met and fell in love! While it was a joy to create, I was frustrated that, due to funding requirements, we built things according to a set plan even when we learned that our plan wasn’t the best way to deliver the outcomes we hoped for.
This is where I first got excited about how new ways of working (design thinking, human-centered design, lean and agile) could give me the tools I needed and help me to deliver outcomes rather than outputs.
"Getting stuck into what I really love: data!"
Next, I moved across the Atlantic to Canada and joined a startup fundraising agency. During my time there, I helped it to grow from 8 to 24 permanent staff and more than triple the size of our call centre. Here I was able to get stuck into my other love: data!
I looked through huge data sets to pull out meaningful insights and found that by focusing on behaviours like previous donation amounts and frequencies, instead of demographics like age or gender, I was able to deliver significantly higher donation rates and amounts. For example, behavioural data modelling and audience selection on one monthly giving campaign for The Alzheimer Society of Canada saw a new gift rate of 6%, and average donation amount of $12. (The control group that did not use this modelling was closed early due to a low new gift rate of less than 2%.)
My next role was at Cancer Research UK where I got to combine all I had learned. Here I was part of a ground-breaking team where I supported fundraising and marketing teams to take a scientific approach to running small experiments to learn what they needed to in order to improve / deliver new things. We worked on World Cancer Day, Future of Work (investigating things like remote working, digital tools, and inclusion), and how to raise money through the video gaming industry.
What Julia's clients say
I think [this way of working] is transformational but only because of the model [of coaching and supporting teams to make tools like agile and lean work for them] you use.
INTERIM HUMAN RIGHTS EDUCATION MANAGER
You refocused us on what our supporters really want. We now have more confidence in our ideas because we have tested them. With your help we didn’t need to go straight to an agency, instead you built our confidence to do this ourselves. Thank you!