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User centered design research - 
moving towards the heart of 
business decision making. 
Ben Fehnert 
UCD - 25th October 2...
Image: www.erincox.com 2
2 
Organisational decisions 
1. Economic 
2. Heroic 
3. Ecological 
4. Religious 
5. Scientific 
Image: www.startupcollect...
2 
Individuals decisions 
1. Independence 
2. Free will 
3. Rationality 
4. Biases 
Image: www.greenbookblog.org
Image: www.usoniandreams.info
Image: www.haaretz.com
Image: http://ukdesperatehousewifeusa.files.wordpress.com
Image: www.startupcollective.com
Image: www.greenbookblog.org 2
Design 
Research 
Decisions 
Questions 
2
Finance 
Management 
Design research 
2
Design 
Research 
2
2014 
Image: www.openlawlab.com
2014 
Can we do things 
differently? 
Can we do 
things better? 
Image: www.openlawlab.com 
Can we be 
more efficient? 
Ca...
Image: www.searchenginehistory.com
No one really. 
Designers maybe? 
Image: www.searchenginehistory.com
Image: www.lego.com 1
No one really. 
Designers maybe? 
Image: www.fastcodesign.com
Education Healthcare Mobile Tech Public Service Shared Spaces
Image: www.fastcodesign.com
Users 
expect 
1. User expectation 
Image: www.deloitte.com
1. User expectation 2. Unknowns 2. Formalisation 4. Business 
Image: www.morganstanley.com 
?
1. User expectation 2. Unknowns 33. Formalisation 4. Business 
Research Development 
Start End 
Executives officially 
com...
4. Business 
Image: www.sopinion8ed.wordpress.com
1. User expectation 2. Unknowns 3. Formalisation 4. Business 
+ better use of questions + wider range of methods 
Image: w...
Questions 
Image: www.neuroself.com
Questions 
Image: www.erincox.com
Methods 
Image: www.dailymail.co.uk
What now? 
2 
Image: www.erincox.com
Amazon • Pushing the boundaries of service experience, 
focusing on the end customer and using questioning to 
focus the b...
ReD associates: Bringing ethnographic research into 
decision making and serving clients that you would not 
typically ass...
Social Design: Looking to answer wide ranging societal 
needs with mixed methodology design research and 
challenge constr...
Government Digital Services • Bringing the citizen into the 
process, asking challenging questions and bringing 
research ...
SP+EE • A design-led research project to define the user 
experience of a Novartis telehealth service for the 
treatment o...
Image: www.erincox.com
A centre for design research 
Ben Fehnert www.eclipse-experience.com 
Twitter@eclipse_london
UCD14 Talk - Ben Fehnert - User Centered Design-Led Research Moving towards the Heart of Business Decision Making
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UCD14 Talk - Ben Fehnert - User Centered Design-Led Research Moving towards the Heart of Business Decision Making

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Ben Fehnert - User Centered Design-Led Research Moving towards the Heart of Business Decision Making

To date many organisations starting consumer projects invite design input and involve user-centred researchers and designers at some stage – some at the start, some sooner than later and some really late or beyond late.

CHALLENGE AND ASK HARD QUESTIONS
Ultimately, in utilising UCD, it is important to constantly challenge oneself and others by asking hard questions and continually enhancing and combining UCD knowledge and skills in order to foster innovation. Importantly, while user needs have to be put at the heart of any consumer offering, it is fundamental to first determine what the offering means in business terms.

MAKE USE AND MINDFULLY MIX A WIDER RANGE OF METHODS TO ANSWER THESE QUESTIONS
We have to be open to pick and mix a range of methods in order to answer these questions. For example, a standard interview method carried out in a lab will miss a lot of subtle multi-faceted socio-psychological factors that significantly affect users’ product/service interaction. Sadly, ethnographic methods, able to eliciting subtle behavioural patterns, are sometimes overlooked as too expensive and time-consuming to deploy. In addition, there are promising practices from more formal approaches such as risk and post-market surveillance that can add great benefit to both users and business agenda when applied to smaller agile projects.

A focused and at times tough questioning approach of user and business needs, mindful selection and contextual application of design-led research methods to a cross-section of users and holistic team approach leads to generation of more intuitive approaches and solutions.

In this talk, I will challenge some aspects of common practices and show – through the usage of project examples from telecoms and telehealth – how these approaches lead to better understanding of context, long-term use and a greater ability for design-research to drive broader decision making affecting the end user experience.

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UCD14 Talk - Ben Fehnert - User Centered Design-Led Research Moving towards the Heart of Business Decision Making

  1. 1. User centered design research - moving towards the heart of business decision making. Ben Fehnert UCD - 25th October 2014
  2. 2. Image: www.erincox.com 2
  3. 3. 2 Organisational decisions 1. Economic 2. Heroic 3. Ecological 4. Religious 5. Scientific Image: www.startupcollective.com
  4. 4. 2 Individuals decisions 1. Independence 2. Free will 3. Rationality 4. Biases Image: www.greenbookblog.org
  5. 5. Image: www.usoniandreams.info
  6. 6. Image: www.haaretz.com
  7. 7. Image: http://ukdesperatehousewifeusa.files.wordpress.com
  8. 8. Image: www.startupcollective.com
  9. 9. Image: www.greenbookblog.org 2
  10. 10. Design Research Decisions Questions 2
  11. 11. Finance Management Design research 2
  12. 12. Design Research 2
  13. 13. 2014 Image: www.openlawlab.com
  14. 14. 2014 Can we do things differently? Can we do things better? Image: www.openlawlab.com Can we be more efficient? Can we avoid mistakes?
  15. 15. Image: www.searchenginehistory.com
  16. 16. No one really. Designers maybe? Image: www.searchenginehistory.com
  17. 17. Image: www.lego.com 1
  18. 18. No one really. Designers maybe? Image: www.fastcodesign.com
  19. 19. Education Healthcare Mobile Tech Public Service Shared Spaces
  20. 20. Image: www.fastcodesign.com
  21. 21. Users expect 1. User expectation Image: www.deloitte.com
  22. 22. 1. User expectation 2. Unknowns 2. Formalisation 4. Business Image: www.morganstanley.com ?
  23. 23. 1. User expectation 2. Unknowns 33. Formalisation 4. Business Research Development Start End Executives officially commit to a project Designs are transferred to manufacturing Design and Development Design Review Design Input Design Output Design Verification (Does DI = DO) Design Transfer Design Validation Image: FDA diagram interpretation by Eclipse Experience
  24. 24. 4. Business Image: www.sopinion8ed.wordpress.com
  25. 25. 1. User expectation 2. Unknowns 3. Formalisation 4. Business + better use of questions + wider range of methods Image: www.fastcodesign.com
  26. 26. Questions Image: www.neuroself.com
  27. 27. Questions Image: www.erincox.com
  28. 28. Methods Image: www.dailymail.co.uk
  29. 29. What now? 2 Image: www.erincox.com
  30. 30. Amazon • Pushing the boundaries of service experience, focusing on the end customer and using questioning to focus the business agenda. Decisions Questions Answers Image: www.gizmag.com
  31. 31. ReD associates: Bringing ethnographic research into decision making and serving clients that you would not typically associate these approaches. Decisions Questions Answers Image: www.commons.wikimedia.org
  32. 32. Social Design: Looking to answer wide ranging societal needs with mixed methodology design research and challenge constraints in role and scope Decisions Questions Answers Image: www.cgoumrdmiaonn.cso.wmikimedia.org
  33. 33. Government Digital Services • Bringing the citizen into the process, asking challenging questions and bringing research and business pragmatism to bear Decisions Questions Answers Image: www.gds.blog.gov.uk
  34. 34. SP+EE • A design-led research project to define the user experience of a Novartis telehealth service for the treatment of COPD Decisions Questions Answers Image: Eclipse Experience
  35. 35. Image: www.erincox.com
  36. 36. A centre for design research Ben Fehnert www.eclipse-experience.com Twitter@eclipse_london

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