Gokul Krishnan ( )
In contemporary times, location-based intelligence is practically an essential asset across multiple industries. With the advancing technology and growing sophistication of location-based intelligence, the significance of User Interface (UI) and User Experience (UX) design is paramount when it comes to unlocking its full potential.
This is where design thinking comes into force. It can serve as a potent instrument for cultivating innovation and fostering a culture of creativity within an organization. In my view, design thinking methodology even encourages teams to think beyond conventional boundaries and develop inventive solutions for intricate problems. By prioritising user needs and aspirations, organisations can build products and services that genuinely address the requirements of their customers.”
It can be used to develop new products and services or improve existing products and services to solve internal business problems. Digital leaders can use design thinking to create a culture of innovation within their organizations, encouraging teams to think creatively and develop new solutions to complex problems.
The process can largely be condensed into five steps.
Putting the user first: Understanding the role of empathy in digital leaderships
Digital leaders should prioritise empathising with users to understand their needs. To do this, you must place yourself in the users’ shoes— a process that can be carried out through practices like user research to gain insight into what are the common problems among the group.
For it to be really successful, developing empathy becomes a crucial skill, as it enables them to design solutions that meet the needs of users. By understanding the pain points and challenges that users are experiencing, digital leaders can create products and services that provide value and improve user satisfaction. To cultivate empathy within their teams, digital leaders should encourage their teams to take a user-centric approach to product development. This involves involving users in the design process and soliciting feedback throughout the development cycle. By applying users early and often, digital leaders can ensure their teams build products that meet user needs and expectations.
Unveiling the Core: Defining the problem in the product development stage
Once digital leaders understand the needs of their users, the next step is put the information to work.
This means identifying the problem that needs to be solved. It begins with identifying the root cause of the problem and framing it in a way that inspires creative solutions.
For instance, let’s say you’re experiencing chronic back pain. The root cause of this problem might be poor posture or a lack of exercise. By defining the problem, you can brainstorm creative solutions such as stretching routines, ergonomic office furniture, or an exercise regimen targeting your back muscles.
In a digital product development context, this involves identifying user pain points like slow website load times or confusing navigation. By framing these issues to inspire creative solutions, digital leaders can work with their teams to design and implement innovative solutions that improve the user experience and drive engagement, which is why defining the problem is a critical step in the digital product development process.
The Art of Innovation: Harnessing the potential of ideation
Ideation is a crucial step in the digital product development process. According to a McKinsey survey, companies prioritising ideation are more likely to achieve successful innovation outcomes.
Ideation promotes creativity and innovation within digital teams. A study published in the Journal of Business and Psychology found that groups that engage in brainstorming sessions generate more unique ideas than individuals working alone. By encouraging team members to think outside the box and develop unconventional solutions, digital leaders can create products and services that stand out in a crowded marketplace. It’s worth noting that ideation is an iterative process that often involves multiple rounds of brainstorming and refinement. Digital teams should be prepared to prototype, test, and iterate on their ideas until they arrive at a solution that meets user needs and drives business results. Ideation is critical for driving successful innovation outcomes and promoting creativity within digital teams. By prioritizing ideation and encouraging collaboration and creativity among team members, digital leaders can create products and services that meet user needs and drive business growth.
Prototyping for Better Digital Product Development
There are several benefits to prototyping. It is a vital aspect of digital product development, offering various benefits that can lead to successful product launches. IBM’s study has shown that prototyping can significantly reduce the development time of a digital product by up to 33%, resulting in faster and more efficient product development.
Moreover, it can save up to 30% of development costs by identifying design flaws and functionality issues earlier in the process. High-fidelity prototypes in fact can provide more accurate user feedback. Users can better imagine the final product’s look and feel, leading to feedback more relevant to the final product. Also testing multiple prototypes can lead to better final products. By testing several prototypes with users, digital teams can gather more comprehensive user feedback and identify the strengths and weaknesses of each prototype.
Ultimately, this leads to the creation of a final product that better meets user needs and expectations.
It all boils down to testing
This critical step involves gathering user feedback and insights to refine the solution and make any necessary improvements. Testing ensures that digital products and services meet user needs and expectations. By soliciting user feedback, digital teams can identify pain points and areas for improvement and make iterative changes to the product until it meets user needs. To conduct effective testing, digital teams should develop a comprehensive testing plan that outlines the goals of the testing process, the metrics that will be used to measure success, and the methods that will be used to gather user feedback.
Testing should be conducted using a representative sample of users and involve various testing methods, such as usability testing, A/B testing, and focus groups. Once testing is complete, digital teams should analyse the feedback and insights gathered to refine the solution and make any necessary improvements.
This iterative approach ensures that digital products are continually refined based on user feedback, improving user satisfaction and engagement. Overall, testing is a critical component of successful digital product development. By gathering user feedback and refining the solution, digital teams can create products and services that truly meet user needs and drive business growth.
Design thinking can be an empowering methodology that enables organisations to cultivate an atmosphere of inventiveness and ingenuity. By using this five-step design thinking process, digital pioneers can inspire teams to imagine unconventionally and devise original resolutions to intricate quandaries.
Gokul Krishnan is the Vice President of UI/UX and Design at Near, a SaaS company that offers a unique source of intelligence on People, Place, and Product data.
(Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of YourStory.)