A long time ago, I discovered Mei Zhang’s post about when it’s the right time to apply a specific product design methods. And, for sure, it’s a common question not just among UX/UI designers, or even professionals design related.
Just keep in mind as a designer, you should know not only how to design pretty and useful interfaces, user experience concepts, and research methods in the applicable fields.
You should also include in your capabilities the improvement of business knowledge, technology trends, communication and negotiation skills, etc.
That’s the reason why I consider Mei Zhang’s a useful post, and full of valuable information, that you can take to improve your process since we need a ‘when to use what’ guide on paper or in this case a mind map.
That’s why I’m sure this exercise can help you in many different ways to improve your capabilities in several fields.
So, for each of the different stages of the design process, you will find the right design method to be applied.
The understanding phase of the product design process is the stage where designers and other stakeholders gather information about the problem that the product is intended to solve.
This typically involves conducting market research, identifying user needs and requirements, and defining the scope and goals of the project. The goal of this phase is to gain a deep understanding of the problem and the target market, so that the team can create a product that will effectively meet the needs of the users. This phase typically involves a lot of brainstorming and collaboration, as well as the creation of sketches, prototypes, and other visual aids to help the team better understand the problem and potential solutions.
In a few words, in the understanding phase of the product design methods, we’re talking about how to be emphatic with others, we put ourselves into users’ shoes and understand their likes & dislikes, context, needs, pain points, challenges, and endeavors, etc. Meanwhile, we learn about the business:
- What is the money-making model?
- What are the metrics to measure business success?
- What are the business challenges?
- What product cycle we are in?
The define phase of the product design process is when the team creates a detailed plan for the product they are going to develop.
This phase typically involves identifying the target market for the product, conducting market research to understand the challenges, needs, and wants of that market, and defining the key features and functions the product will have.
The goal of the define phase is to create a clear and comprehensive plan that can be used to guide the development of the product. This plan will typically include a set of product requirements and specifications that outline the product’s desired features, performance, and other characteristics.
The define phase is an important step in the product design process because it helps ensure that the product being developed meets the needs of the target market and is likely to be successful when it is released.
The ideate phase of the product design process is when designers come up with ideas for a new product.
This is typically done through brainstorming sessions, where designers generate a large number of ideas and then narrow them down to the best ones.
The goal of the ideate phase is to generate a variety of possible solutions to the problem at hand and to identify the most promising directions to explore further in the next phase of the design process.
This phase is often seen as the most creative and exploratory part of the design process, as it involves coming up with new and innovative ideas.
The execution phase of the product design process is the stage where the product is actually developed and created. This is typically the longest and most involved phase, as it involves bringing all of the ideas and plans from the previous phases to life.
During the execution phase, the design team will work closely with engineers and other professionals to create detailed specifications and plans for the product. They will also work on building prototypes and conducting tests to ensure that the product will function as intended.
Once the product has been designed and tested, it will be sent to production, where it will be manufactured and assembled. The execution phase may also involve marketing and other activities to prepare for the product’s launch.
Overall, the execution phase is focused on turning the product design into a real, tangible product that is ready to be used by consumers.
Different stories have different ways to validate. Besides looking for what you predicted, also pay attention to other metrics or feedback.
Also, make sure qualitative study is part of the procedure at the beginning, so that you have a solid ground to advocate for your users. Never forget to follow up after the validation
- What you can improve?
- What are the new opportunities?
- Do you need more validation?
Finally, If your’re starting to work with the product design methods, it’s totally recommended reviewing the Mei Zhang’s post and of course, visiting the full map at Miro.
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