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Personio: Category Labels - UX Writing 🖊️

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🤔 What is Personio?

👉  Personio is a widely-used HR tool for companies.


The tool acts as a centralised HR database. It is used by HR managers and team members of staff-alike to record and reference HR-related information, including holidays, sick leave, attendance tracking, job postings and more.

🤔 What was the UX writing task?

👉 The task consisted of identifying and validating category labels.


This task very much focused on microcopy, using a triangulation of user research methods to confirm category labels in English & German 🇬🇧  🇩🇪

🤔 What was the main challenge?

👉  Implementing the correct forms of user research to validate category labels within contexts.


Microcopy within UX writing has much more weight than other content forms within products. They often make up a "make or break" scenario for users. Moreover, it needs to portray the exact content contained within the main or sub-category while appealing to user demographics.


This task fundamentally drew upon the "Test" stage of the design process. 

It revisited the "Refine" and "Prototype" stages from previous development.


Understand the user. What are the users' goals, needs, wants and frustrations?

Define the problem. What needs to be solved?

UX Design: User Interviews & Surveys: Uncover what the user needs.

User needs are uncovered. Create initial UX copy to address user needs.

Create Microcopy based on Cloze Questions.

Create designs with new copy for A/B testing.

UX Design: Usability testing. Does the copy fit the context?

A/B Testing

Insert the copy into the final designs and update.

Tools used

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Ben Bruton - UX Writing


The refinement stage of the UX Writing: Category Labels projects consisted of the first round of testing: 7 Cloze Tests using Typeform surveys to assess category and sub-category labels.

This stage was conducted by Personio, and provided a basis to proceed with UX microcopy for the next stages.

Cloze Testing

Users recruited from Testing Time were prompted to fill in the _______ blank. 

In the 7 Cloze Tests, they were asked contextual questions about what they would name a certain category as. The format was open-ended, allowing the testers to fill in the _______ blanks freely - whatever term came to mind first. 

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The answers generated from the initial round of Cloze Testing in "Words to test" provided a base to create and carry out Preference Testing

Compared to all 7 tests, tests 2 & 6 only generated consistency with two terms. Therefore, only these two subject to testing in the round of preference testing.


The answers generated from the initial round of Cloze Testing in "Words to test" provided a base to create and carry out Preference Testing

Compared to all 7 tests, tests 2 & 6 only generated consistency with two terms. Therefore, only these two subject to testing in the round of preference testing.

Prototype Designer


Now that consistent variables (microcopy contenders) had been generated from the Cloze Testing, the best course of action was to insert the variable terms into wireframes.

The wireframes were created with Figma, and the approach took up the following:

1. Copy the existing Personio UI into Figma for the 7 tests in English

2. In each wireframe, highlight the microcopy in question and insert the variable microcopies for testing.

3. Once the two/three wireframes for each test were ready with the microcopy contenders incorporated ... gif time! An online gif maker was used to compare and contrast the microcopy for testing. As there were 7 tests to be carried out, 7 gifs were made.

4. After the English tests were ready, German prototypes were correspondingly created for the German preference testing. The German terms selected were translations of the English microcopy identified. 

💭 The key difference between the English and German tests was that the German prototypes contained "Anderer Begriff" (other term). This allowed German testers to select a term, OR add in their own if the spotted other valid alternative microcopy in the following preference testing.

English Prototypes: Gif Examples

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En Test 4 .gif
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En Test 2.gif

German Prototypes: Gif Examples 

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Clothes comparison


At this point, we had 7 prototype gifs ready to go for English, and the corresponding 7 for German. 

They were all put to the test with preference testing with the Maze user research tool. 

Gathering Testers

We needed at least 30 testers per test - for both English & German.

The English testers were recruited using Maze's internal recruiting tool.

The German testers were recruited by exporting the German test link onto Testing Time.

Test Approach

Real-life contexts for each question were added in to increase validity, and to help the select a choice that felt the most natural to them. I also included each gif in each question as a visual aid.


Maze Question Example: English 

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Maze Question Example: German

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Results: Final, Updated Microcopy!

The final microcopy used, validated and updated onto the Personio product was determined by the following results:

English 🇬🇧

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German 🇩🇪

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