What is a stakeholder interview?
Stakeholder interviews are used in the very early stages of a project to understand the different stakeholders that are involved and learn about their views and opinions of the project. Generally when planning your research activities you want to interview your stakeholders before you start to think about interviewing users.
Stakeholder interviews aim to develop understanding around the aims and goals of the project, any constraints, historical background, existing assumptions and anything else that could be relevant. Stakeholder interviews also assist in building trust and relationships within the project and wider team.
Questions you can answer with a stakeholder interview
Who cares why we're doing this research?
How involved are these team members going to be?
Can anyone else help me out?
Advantages of stakeholder interviews
Great for getting historical context
Nearly required for all cross functional research projects
Clearly defines goals from the start
Disadvantages of stakeholder interviews
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Depending on the size of the team, can take time
Has to be augmented with team wide meetings
Hard to do with lack of research buy-in