UX Design

A week-long UX Design studio takes the customer’s idea for a mobile application through a user experience (UX) design process based upon best practices from the Nielsen Norman Group (NN/g), the industry authority on UX design.

The process establishes a shared understanding of the intended purpose of the mobile application, its target users, their specific needs and the features the mobile application must have to satisfy those needs.

Exploration of the information required to deliver upon the user needs then follows including how that information might be best structured and organized for discoverability and findability, two critical aspects of an effective information architecture.

With the individual content items known and organized, we then dive into understanding if those items presently exist in some back end system and whether it is in a format suitable for mobile. We also determine how best to integrate with those content back end systems for effective and efficient two-way data interchange.

Then, there is the visual design, which involves the strategic use of fonts, images, icons, controls and colours to provide balance and weight to screens. A successful visual design does not take away from content but instead enhances it, helping to build trust, loyalty and engagement. The elements of the visual design that will be applied to the mobile application are often contained in company branding guidelines, which will be reviewed and harmonized with visual design guidelines from the various mobile platforms.

The user research, information architecture, content strategy and visual design funnels down to the interface and how users will interact with what they see on the screen. The best way to represent the user interaction and interface is through sketches, or wireframes, on the premise of a picture is worth a thousand words.

With the design taking shape, the scale of investment needed to build the mobile application also becomes clearer. Decisions can now be made on how best to break down the development work based upon any time and budget constraints. This breaking down and sequencing of work becomes the product roadmap that seeds the product backlog, and all the features planned for the product.

Time-boxing the UX Design studio to one-week provides the right level of requirements analysis and design work to get started and avoids analysis-paralysis, forever planning and designing and never doing.

Each UX Design studio session is 3-hours in duration, approximately half a day. The first UX Design studio session is focussed on gaining a mutual understanding of the users, their needs and the information to satisfy those needs. The second UX Design studio session is focused on the user interface and interactions. The third, and final, UX Design studio session is to step through and review the UX Design report that brings everything from the week together and springboards the next set of activities, development.

Key artifacts delivered from the UX Design studio include:

  • User profiles
  • User stories
  • Information architecture
  • Content strategy
  • Visual design
  • User interaction design
  • User interface design
  • Product backlog
  • Minimum viable product
  • Work breakdown structure
  • Refined cost and schedule estimate