How can we change the mostly oversized User Experience Practices currently used out there? How can we make it more efficient to get to the services and products faster and more successfully without becoming a design specification bureaucracy? In developing new products and services, typically User Experience Design with its full packed method pipeline causes a jam to get the product to the market in time. Lean UX removes this jam.
12 things we have learned to get it lean:
- Set up small teams: At Intuity we have no key-account, sales and project management employees. The Visual & Interaction Designers and Creative Technologists embody additional multiple skills: From proposal writing over supervision to leadership. In sum, this means: less useless conversation,more action.
- Learn fast: Gain a deep understanding of the clients domain and business. If possible, get out and talk to experts or participate in a training.
- Face the challenge: Address the core problem. Say no to a laundry list of desirable outcomes. Be aware of the need of coordinating and focussing the available resources continuously. If you cannot define the challenge, you cannot evaluate a strategy nor realign it.
- Use tailor-made methods: We worked on more projects than we could possibly count. The process has never been the same. We like to choose and discard methods on the basis of insights we gain throughout the project´s progress.
- Get hands-on with your client: Solve the problems together on eye level.
- Stand on the shoulders of giants: Don’t reinvent the wheel. Build uponsuccessful models.
- Build a common language: Fast sketching the domain, service flow or user interface is like a language everyone understands. Sketching brings solutions to life faster.
- Replace assumptions with insights: Start with the hypothesis and pretotype it. It may not work out the way you planned it. Iterate again and fast. More about pretotyping: “Pretotypen Sie es!”, Ralf Allrutz and “Pretotype It”, Alberto Savoia .
- Get feedback: Go to the customers or users and let them play with your pretotype. Be aware, it´s your job to decide which feedback is worth to consider.
- Get everyone involved: Make sure that every stakeholder understands the new domain in detail. We recommend Domain Driven Design.
- Pair up: Bring technologists, developers and designers as soon as possible co-creatively to the project. It saves time and levels the playing field. Pairing sets designers free and empowers developers. I like the values of our friends and fellows at the native web. One of them is “Pair for everything”.
- Make everything comprehensible: Document the outcome and provide a reusable asset library for developers and designers. We use our “Intuity Box”. It is a collaborative extranet-space which accelerates decision making and helps to structure cross-functional teams and top management.
The above listed learnings help us to align our work to the relevant parameters and to raise the chance to be successful based on an unexpected design strategy.