Future workshops: A user centered designtechnique to envision future services19Th April 2013
2User centered Design: how to generate conceptstarting from user research?1 234Userresearch/Requirements AnalysisConcept g...
“Everyday people are notvery good designers”“You cant just ask customerswhat they want and then try togive that to them. B...
Concept Brainstorming:a methodology for concept generation4Specs &ImplementationConceptAdoptionIdeaGenerationConceptelabor...
Whichisthemainunitofanalysis?PeopleWorldToolsinspired by L. Vigotskyourfocusistodesignactivities
Dividetheproblemspaceinspired by Herbert Simon: Bounded RationalityHowtodefinethe„agenda‟foraconceptbrainstorming?
Which activities and tools for generating ideas?An inspiring approach7InspirationElaborationSharing“The cycle of creative ...
8• Short video orpresentation (about theproblem)• Scenarios/video scenarios• PersonasInspirationElaborationSharing• Extrem...
A concrete example of Concept BrainstormingDesign a new tool for the Technical Assistance9Persona‟sElaborationActivityMapp...
Personas elaboration – session 1 10Personas posterPersonas elaboration
Activity Mapping – session 1 11Map of the main processes “Activity Mapping”
Tech Identikit – session 1 12Tech stimulus presentation“Tech identikit”
Participatory Design – session 1 13Groups elaborate envisioning proposals of “Service andInteraction Design” based on the ...
Concept Elaboration (7-10 days) 14Preparation of comic boards(envisioning scenarios)
Validation Workshop (1 day) 154 scenarios containing variationsParticipants read and add comments tothe scenarios first as...
Concept Book and Proof of concept(15 - 20 days)16Concept BookPrototype
Main Benefits 17• To define in 2 sessions of workshop a tangible “identikit” of the futuresolution• To create consensus am...
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Future workshops: a user centered design technique to envision future services, UX Masterclass Madrid 2013

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Future workshops: a user centered design technique to envision future services

The “future workshop” is a tool to generate and select innovative service design concepts. The process starts with analysis of data gathered from field research and benchmarking then, by the use of personas and design scenario creation, promotes concept generation and selection, through design workshops with users and internal stakeholders. The results lead to concept book creation and prototyping. In this presentation, a case studies will be explained: a service engineer tablet application for a white goods manufacturer.

Presentation given by Stefano Zanini (Assist S.p.A., Italy) at the UX Masterclass conference in Madrid, April 19th 2013

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  • As we well know, in User Centered Design (UCD) end-users of a product/service are the main actor. they are involved at each stage of the design process. Starting by the beginning, through ethnographic for instance it is possible to uncover users’ needs, desires and limitations. It’s also true that in the design life cycle we have another important actor: the company stakeholders with their own needs and goals.Then we have the designers (here we are) typically asked to solve some problems and design issues for the company.The goal of this presentation is to share a methodology , the concept brainstorming workshops, that we are using in order to generate concept of new services starting from ethnographic / field researches.
  • One of the typical issue in design is thetransformation of user requirements collected during preliminary research (for instance etnographic studies) in design.Design is not an esy stuff!And we know well how much everyday people are not very good designers, as Norman says.I think that one of the more representative anecdote to represent this issue comes from Henry Ford. You remember?“If I’d asked people what they wanted, they would have said ‘a faster horse”
  • In order to manage this transition, from user requirements to concept of a new service, we use the concept brainstorming methodology.Depending on the goal of the concept generation, the concept brainstorming can be light (one session) or full version (2 sessions). For instance if the concept is almost defined and the goal is understand if it can be feasible or not (for instance in terms of service model, business model, and so forth) or if you need to go in depth with the interaction design, in this case you can use the light version.I’d like to tell you the most complete version of the concept brainstorming: the one that lasts 2 sessions, which are the main steps and techniques, and the inspiring approach.Tipicallywho is involved? company stakeholders, designers, users . In our experience not all the company culture is open to involve in such sessions a sample of representative users. But when they accept this challenge, tipically the result is wonderful. All the actors have different style of communication, different role but the concept brainstorming creates the opportunity to express themselves and to collaborate in order to be ‘all’ designers of the solution.Which is the main goal of the concept brainstorming?To design an ‘identikit’ of the future service/systemTo create a common and sharedvision of the future service/systemThe main goal as in each brainstorming is to generate ideas in order to define a concept that can be realistic and adopted by users. And then trying to select the most suitable ideas and elaborate the concrete design.As typically happens in a brainstorming (in a creative session) also in a concept brainstorming you can have a divergent phase (during this phase the participant should diverge and generate a pletora of ideas) and then pass to the convergent phase (in order to cut ideas and “down to hell” as happen in Apple..you remember the payoff “Up to sky, down to hell” ..generate also extreme ideas and then cut the tree till you have the realistic identikit of your service/product)We asked ourself: is it possible also for creative sessions aimed at design new services? and how exactly?
  • First of all the theoretical approach: we are typically inspired in our design by the idea inspired by Lev Vygotsky, the russianpsycologyst founder of the cultural – historical psycology. The great inspiration is that the focus of the analysis (and then for us the design) should be the interaction that you have among tools , people, world. Tipically in this interaction you have human activity.Looking at the the real interaction among people, tools and the cultural-social-technological world we can discover criticalities but also new possibilities (new possible activities).In
  • First step for usis to set the goal and then divide the problemspace in sub-problems, in clear and well-definedquestions.our concept brainstorming we have found different questions to answer. And for us the answer can be built by starting from the main activiities that we should support or improve.For instance for a bank the goals was to find a consensus about the role and function of their web site (which role, which tone of voice, how to engage the active participation of customers?)For another customer the goal was to define the new idea of Professional Social Networking (which model is more suitable to the Company? how to design it? which kind of services? how to manage it?) More recently for a Company in the White Goods sector, the goals was to rethink the Technical Service which services, which new technology, which interction model, which organizational/process requirements?The main area of investigationwere:The service model and the mainfunctionalitiesthe mainprocessesbehind the new tool for the technicalassistancethe technologicalfeatures (whichdevice, whichoperatingsystem, whichadditionalequipment due, etc)the interaction model of the new toolThen, we share the maintopic with ourcustomers and webuilt the agenda of the session. How? Nowwesee in detail.
  • After the goal setting and the definition of the main topic we go dive in the agenda definition.the inspiring approach for that is always L. Vygotsky with the cycle of the creative immagination. Imagination and Creativity is an ability of each person, starting from kids. Creativity starts from the stimulus coming from the sensorial world (the inspiration phase), here you activate relationship among imagination and emotion.Then people (imagine the kid) elaborate their ideas and produce something in the worldand the third step is to share the product of the creativity / imagination with other people . the new product can create inspiration for new elaboration.the same can happen in a concept brainstoming.
  • For each phase in a workshop wetipically use use different materials, depending on the workshop goal.In the inspiration phase the main goals is to create a common vocabulary in a visual and emotional way. We need to use materials to activate in a sensorial/emotional way relationship among the problem space and possible new ideas.Now I will give you concrete examples of that.Then in the elaboration phase we ask to the participant to work in workgroups and elaborate new ways for solving the question we pose (for instance in order to clarify the user needs, in order to define better a process, to define the tecnologicalidentitkit of the new service and so forth). For that we use different techniques:in case of totally new services we use extreme design exercises (that tipically starts from extreme user scenarios ) and people in a short time have to elaborate solutions for that problem.Another one is the metaphor exercise (imagine that the new solution is a car, a tool, a dress, ..) what features would have according to you? In case of workshop where you need to understand the information architecture of a system, we use the card sortingor in case you need to go dive in a process we use the activity mapping technique.In the sharing phase after collecting more deep elaboration of the data coming from etnographic (from the users), from the technological landscape (if it’s in scope of the project), from the company processes, and so forth we start the sharing phase. Tipically the sharing phase is the second session of the concept brainstorming.You need almost 7 -10 days at maximum to elaborate all the data in concept ideas and then meet again with all the actors (company stakeholders, users, designers) in order to share the main concept ideas elaborated during the previous workshop and select the most suitable for the company and the users.In order to share ideas the designers during the 7-10 days can create:some comic boards (scenarios that represent the main user experience elaborate in the first session). during the workshop the users validate the concept and select or integrate with more ideas.or an alternative technique can be the diary keeping : during the 7-10 days participants ‘adopt’ one or more concept and through the diary keeping tecnhniqe take trace of all the daily life situations in which they could have used the concept.in the validation session all the participants (including the end users) discuss the experiences and select the concept more suitable to their activties.The finalstepis the elaboration of the main identikit of the new solution in a documentthetwe call ‘concept book’ containing the mainfeatures of the interaction model, the service model, the information design model and so forth.
  • Now a real example of that. The indesit case, the goal was to design a new tool (a mobile tool) for the technical assistance spread in different countries
  • 6 Personasanalyzed by participants to identify and clarify Users’ Needs
  • In this specific case there was a previous analysis related to the data flows in each main process for the Technical Assistance in Indesit.Findings were elaborated and 4 key activities chosen as most significant processes to improve: Diagnostic, Rebooking, Sales and Spare Part Management The 4 activities were analyzed and discussed by the groups in turn. Each workgroup considered the findings on the assigned activity, individuated critical areas and offered their solution.
  • After a Stimulus presentation about different devices and available option participants divided into groups discussed the “tech-Identikit” of the future services in terms of form, interaction technology. Device mix…
  • Participatory Designat the end of the first day the Assist team prepare some supporting material to sum – up requirements and envisioning scenarios coming from the day and select the main topic for the design sessions for day 2.Following the analysis of the findings of the field research and the individuation of solution to the needs and activity problems, the later part of the workshops required the groups to imagine and create comprehensive solutions.The technological choices were then considered as constrains to design a scenario spanning throughout all the phases of the service activity.This “Service Design” activity was detailed by a participatory design session where the groups defined interface details and interaction dynamics of their proposal.
  • Designers and Project Team elaborates results from the first part of the workshop in order to elaborate a set of User Scenarios to represent main design conceptsthe tecnique used was the comic boards
  • For the validation workshop the main concepts individuated during the previous workshops were translated in 4 scenarios described by “stories” displayed in comics form.Each scenario contained variations describing different options and functionalities that could be considered as alternative or co-existent.The participants read and added their comments to the scenarios first as single and later in groups.This methodology allowed to validate the various alternative ideas envisioned in the concept elaboration phase.
  • Designers elaborate a concept book , a document containing the main description of the new service in terms of interaction model, information design, main functionalities. At this stage an additional output can be a video or an interactive prototype demonstrating the new concept.User scenarios, in term of “Comics Boards” are discussed and elaborated during a second workshop session
  • lanciare video del prototipo
  • Future workshops: a user centered design technique to envision future services, UX Masterclass Madrid 2013

    1. 1. Future workshops: A user centered designtechnique to envision future services19Th April 2013
    2. 2. 2User centered Design: how to generate conceptstarting from user research?1 234Userresearch/Requirements AnalysisConcept generationPrototyping & TestProduct Development
    3. 3. “Everyday people are notvery good designers”“You cant just ask customerswhat they want and then try togive that to them. By the timeyou get it built, theyll wantsomething new”“If I‟d asked people what theywanted, they would have said „afaster horse”We know that ….
    4. 4. Concept Brainstorming:a methodology for concept generation4Specs &ImplementationConceptAdoptionIdeaGenerationConceptelaboration• What: 1or 2 sessions of workshop(the first session can last 2 days)• Who: designers, companystakeholders, end users• Why:• To design an „identikit‟ of thefuture service/system• To create a common and sharedvision of the futureservice/system
    5. 5. Whichisthemainunitofanalysis?PeopleWorldToolsinspired by L. Vigotskyourfocusistodesignactivities
    6. 6. Dividetheproblemspaceinspired by Herbert Simon: Bounded RationalityHowtodefinethe„agenda‟foraconceptbrainstorming?
    7. 7. Which activities and tools for generating ideas?An inspiring approach7InspirationElaborationSharing“The cycle of creative immmagination” - Lev Vigotsky
    8. 8. 8• Short video orpresentation (about theproblem)• Scenarios/video scenarios• PersonasInspirationElaborationSharing• Extreme design• Metaphor: “If I were..”• Card sorting• Activity mapping• Comic Boards• Diary Keeping• Participatorydesign• Concept BookWhich activities and tools for generating ideas?Main techniques
    9. 9. A concrete example of Concept BrainstormingDesign a new tool for the Technical Assistance9Persona‟sElaborationActivityMappingParticipatoryDesignConceptValidation1 2 4 66 Personas anduser scenariosanalyzed byparticipants toidentify andclarify Users’NeedsGroups analyzedfour criticalprocessesdiscussingcritical issuesand bestpracticesrevealed overthe threedifferentmarketsGroupselaborateproposal ofService andInteractionDesign, basedon the UserProfiles definedin the PersonasActivityUserscenarios, interm of “ComicsBoards” arediscussed andelaboratedduring a secondworkshopsessionConceptElaborationDesignersand ProjectTeamelaboratesresults fromthe first partof theworkshop inorder toelaborate aset of UserScenarios torepresentmain designconceptsOver 40 participants, three countries and various divisions involved (IT, Quality,..)TechFeatures3Participantsdivided intogroups discussedthe “tech-Identikit” of thefuture services interms ofform, interactiontechnology, device mix, optionaltools,..Session 1 Session 2
    10. 10. Personas elaboration – session 1 10Personas posterPersonas elaboration
    11. 11. Activity Mapping – session 1 11Map of the main processes “Activity Mapping”
    12. 12. Tech Identikit – session 1 12Tech stimulus presentation“Tech identikit”
    13. 13. Participatory Design – session 1 13Groups elaborate envisioning proposals of “Service andInteraction Design” based on the findings of the fieldresearch.Technological choices were considered as constraints todesign the new service activity
    14. 14. Concept Elaboration (7-10 days) 14Preparation of comic boards(envisioning scenarios)
    15. 15. Validation Workshop (1 day) 154 scenarios containing variationsParticipants read and add comments tothe scenarios first as single and later ingroupsValidation of alternative ideasenvisioned in the previous steps
    16. 16. Concept Book and Proof of concept(15 - 20 days)16Concept BookPrototype
    17. 17. Main Benefits 17• To define in 2 sessions of workshop a tangible “identikit” of the futuresolution• To create consensus among stakeholders (a shared solution)• To have enough material for prototyping & testing with users• To have enough material to allow your customer to make internalmarketing activities (to other stakeholders, to the CEO, etc)• …to truly engage your clients! 

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