"Your process is what enables you to do good work."
— M. Monteiro, Design is a Job

A designer is a problem solver, in the sense that it´s expected that he or she will work with all the stakeholders in a project, dealing with their goals and expectations, solving multiple problems while still keeping focus on the user, design, and usability principles.

1 — PROBLEM AND SUCCESS DEFINITION

Understand the problem by interacting with stakeholders in order to define project goals and objectives to determine what constitutes a successful project outcome.

Possible results: Project description, main goals and main players.

2 — KNOW YOUR USERS

Prioritise users as the central focus of the design process, so a possible method could be conduct user interviews and observe their behaviours. This give us the possibility to gather insights about user goals, needs, and expectations.

Possible results: User interviews, field observation, finding, empathy map.

3 — RESEARCH TO UNDERSTAND

On the other hand, a designer must be able to understand what has been done by others from a user research perspective, thus allowing for a proper analysis and consequent lessons learned from its successes and failures. The goals, requirements, and inspirations are part of the research and experimentation, where low-fidelity prototypes can be created, giving a sense of order but also insights reports. Also, look at what other sources of information tell you about mainly secondary research, for example: Why do people seek assistance from Support?

Possible results: Interaction workflows, functional requirements specification and initial version of the mockups, data analysis

4 — DELIVERING VALUE

Depending on the stage of the process, the deliverable may take the form of an insight report, a low-fidelity prototype, or a high-fidelity prototype. These deliverables serve the purpose of helping stakeholders comprehend the challenges that require our focus and potential solutions to address them.

Possible results: Heuristic Evaluation, Insights reports, Mockups, Interaction workflows, High-fidelity prototypes.

5 — ITERATE AND LEARN ABOUT IT

Using design and user interface guidelines creatively is one thing, but making sure users understand and like the interaction is a different challenge. We can’t be certain until users confirm it. Testing is crucial to check if the system meets the goals we set. In terms of possible solutions it is also important to understand with business but also with engineers what are the constraints that we need to consider.

Possible results: Test Plan, Users recruitment, Test results, Next steps definition, Technical validation

6 — STAKEHOLDERS  ARE NOT MIND READERS: PRESENTING THE WORK

The biggest myth in the field of design, in my opinion, is that good design sells itself. A designer should be able to present the solution by explaining why his or her decisions are able to solve a business problem. Besides presenting, the designer needs to be able to understand and interpret the user’s feedback, but also the colleagues and stakeholders.