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Observer Rooms

Democratize research by inviting observers to view live interviews without overwhelming users, and store recordings.

Sophie avatar
Written by Sophie
Updated over a week ago

With Observer Rooms, you can invite team members and stakeholders to livestream user interviews without intimidating or distracting the participant. Observer Room links are automatically generated and included in a separate calendar invite to observers.

Witness live user interactions and get unfiltered user insights straight from the source without interrupting the flow. It's like having a front-row seat to the action without accidentally stealing the spotlight.

Set Up Observer Rooms

Observer Rooms can be enabled for any Interview Study that uses Zoom, Google Meet, or Microsoft Teams. Enable Observer Rooms by following the steps below from the Studies page.

  1. Navigate to the 'Scheduling' section while editing a new or existing Interview Study.

  2. From the sidebar, select 'Event Setup'. You must select either Zoom, Google Meet, or Microsoft Teams as the interview Location to enable Observer Rooms.

  3. From the sidebar, select 'Observer Room'.

  4. Enable Observer Rooms

    • Toggle on the Observer Room to continue with setup.

  5. Observer Room Guests

    1. Select '+ Add Teammate' and type or select their name from the dropdown.

    2. Select '+ Add Email Address' to input any email address of teammates or stakeholders that do not have a Rally account in your workspace.

  6. Note for Observers

    1. Add a custom message for the Study that only Observers will see during the livestream.

      • This is a great place to add context on the specific research you'll be conducting during this interview, or to let Observers know where they can best share their thoughts and feedback on the session.

  7. Once interviews are scheduled, if you are the interviewer, you will see both your scheduled interview event and your Observer Room event on your calendar.

Once you publish the Study and interviews get booked, Observers will receive a separate email and calendar invites with the Observer Room link to watch the session live. Participant PII is protected, meaning that Participant names and emails will not be shown.

🚨 Please note that when using Zoom for interviews, if your Participant has their camera disabled, Zoom will show their name (PII) in it's place by default.

During The Interview

Admit the Notetaker

As the interview host, you'll ensure your Observer Room is available for live-streaming by admitting the recording bot. We suggest joining your interview meeting before the start time to confirm you are all set. 5 minutes before each interview starts, a recording bot (automatically set to "Notetaker") will request to join the interview. It must be admitted by the host of the interview. The Notetaker automatically records the interview once admitted - no need to record the interview manually.

Note: Observer Room recordings do not currently include transcription.

Join the Observer Room

Observers will join the Observer Room for each interview by clicking on the link provided to them in the email or calendar invite that they receive at the time of interview booking.

Add Observers After Scheduling Interviews

Additional Observers added to Studies after Participants have scheduled interviews will not automatically get calendar invites to existing Observer sessions, but they will automatically get calendar invites for all future sessions scheduled after they have been added as Observers. Late-addition Observers can also join the Observer Room from the Study Overview page in Rally even if they have not been added. You can also manually add them to the calendar invites of already-created sessions since they should have been created with your calendar.

Join or Share the Observer Room Link

There are multiple ways to find, view, or share an Observer Room. Navigate to the Studies page, select the relevant Study to open the Study Overview page, and select 'Observer Rooms' from the sidebar.

  • On the right, next to the relevant Interview, select 'Watch' to view the live stream or recording.

  • Select 'Share' and then 'Copy Link' to share this Observer Room with your teammates. There is an auto-generated unique password for each Observer Room to ensure security.

You can also share the link yourself by navigating to the Observer Room and clicking the 'Copy link' button. To reach the Observer Room for any interview, go to your Study’s Interviews page, select the three dots for the interview you want to view, and select 'View Observer Room'. Switch between Upcoming and Completed interviews by selecting the tabs at the top.

After The Interview

A recording of the interview will be available after the call is complete. Team members will be able to view and share a link to the recording page at any time. Your workspace admin can configure who can download Observer Rooms in Settings (admins only, or admins and study teammates).

View the Observer Rooms Settings to see how Super Admins can configure security settings, including who can access Observer Rooms or download recordings, and how long recordings are stored.

Manually Add Observer Room or Observer Bot

Add Observer Room to a Scheduled Interview

If you have upcoming interviews for a Study that were booked before Observer Rooms were enabled for the Study, you can add an Observer Room to a meeting after scheduling. First, you must edit the Study to enable Observer Rooms and save the changes. After enabling Observer Rooms for the Study, you can add an Observer Room to any upcoming interview from the Study Overview or Interviews page.

  1. Navigate to the relevant Study. You can stay on the Study Overview or select 'Interviews' from the sidepanel to complete this action.

  2. Select the three dots ... to the right of any upcoming interview and select 'Add Observer Room' from the dropdown.

  3. In the popup, select 'Confirm'.

Repeat these steps for any interviews booked before Observer Rooms were turned on for this Study.

Send Observer Bot to an Interview

If you're not seeing the "Notetaker" Observer bot show up in your interview to record it, you can manually send the Observer bot to a meeting from your Study Overview in Rally.

  1. Navigate to the relevant Study. You can stay on the Study Overview or select 'Interviews' from the sidepanel to complete this action.

  2. Select the three dots ... to the right of any upcoming interview and select 'Send Observer Bot To Meeting' from the dropdown.

  3. In the popup, select 'Confirm'.

While the "Notetaker" Observer bot usually joins immediately, it may take a few minutes to join the meeting. When Notetaker joins, admit it and select 'Allow Recording' if prompted.

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