Stakeholder Interview Questions

There’s no one way to do a stakeholder interview. Some interviews are intended to get the big picture, others to dig into goals and success metrics, still others to understand the problem or the stakeholder’s understanding of the problem. Here are some of the top resources for stakeholder interviews. Skim them, and see which ones are right for your specific situation.

Boxes and Arrow’s excerpt from Kim Goodwin’s “Designing for the Digital Age” provides a detailed explanation of who to interview, and what to ask for each type of stakeholder. Towards the end of the (same, large) excerpt, there’s a fantastic interview checklist, which is particular useful if you have a large budget and will be speaking with a variety of stakeholders.

UX Apprentice offers an interview template, complete with questions to ask, divided by section. The sections include “process,” “users,” “competition,” and “project vision” – all useful areas to bring up in interviews with stakeholders who have a lot of interaction with their users, and will be able to provide insight on how they think and what they do.

Valerie Neumart recommends 17 questions to ask. While these aren’t nearly as detailed as the UX Apprentice questions, they are all good things to learn about, particularly if you are coming in without a lot of knowledge about the team or project.

Angela Wick suggests 6 questions that will provide a solid understanding of the stakeholder’s goals. If you’re looking to build out your own set of interview questions, this is a good place to start, as she explains the purpose behind each of the 6.

Stacey King Gordon lists out “15 essential questions” for stakeholder interviews. They’re most appropriate if you already know the problem you’ve been hired to solve, but want to understand what the sub-challenges are, and what solutions have already been attempted.

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