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WHY UX MATTERS 

AS YOU SCALE
Mike Scopino
Experience Designer
WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE
• I help businesses build digital tools that
enrich their users’ real world experiences.
• I teach General Assembly’s User Experience
Design course. Next session starts 7/20!
MIKE SCOPINO
EXPERIENCE DESIGN CONSULTANT
@JEFFTHETURTLE
WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE
• The concept of a user experience encompasses people’s
emotional and physical interactions with all aspects of a
product or service
• UX design is a methodical approach to defining those
interactions that a person has with a product
• Design is not a series of deliverables
• Design is not a one size fits all solution
LET’S DEFINE UX
WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE
HERE’S WHY 

IT MATTERS
WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE
• Monetization 

The experience changes as your target audience evolves and your
feature set expands
• An Expanding Team

The holistic vision for the product can no longer exist in one brain
• Bigger Competition

You will vie for market share in a competitive landscape that
already invests heavily in design
YOUR BUSINESS’S GROWTH LEADS TO…
WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE
• Mobile devices, omni-channel commerce, and the growing
internet of things create an environment where digital
experiences are suddenly always present
• This drastically increases daily interactions
• “A pain point can become a ‘pain plane’ on mobile. That’s a lot
of ouch.” – John Maeda
• People will naturally lean toward experiences that offer the
least friction
WHY NOW?
Source: @kpcb @johnmaeda “#DesignInTech Report” (http://www.kpcb.com/design)
WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE
THE COMPETITIVE
LANDSCAPE
“Being designers, they thought we
were people that worked for people
that ran companies.”
- BRIAN CHESKY, CO-FOUNDER OF AIRBNB
WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE
• 6 major venture capital firms invited designers onto their
teams (for the first time) in the last year
• 13 of the 2014 Fortune 125 companies have executive-level
positions for design — Nike’s CEO is a designer!
• 27 startups that were co-founded by designers have been
acquired by major tech companies since 2010
INVESTMENT IN DESIGN BY THE NUMBERS
Source: @kpcb @johnmaeda “#DesignInTech Report” (http://www.kpcb.com/design)
WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE
• Successful tech businesses are realizing that Moore’s Law is
no longer a path to satisfied customers
• Designers are not relegated to making interfaces look better,
they are an active participant in product development
• “Design shouldn’t be designated a specific function or
industry. The discipline is just as fundamental as technology
and profit are to a business… It should be considered part of
every role.” – Sahil Lavingia, founding designer at Pinterest
HOLISTIC INVOLVEMENT
Source: @fastcompany

(http://www.fastcodesign.com/1669189/pinterests-founding-designer-shares-his-dead-simple-design-philosophy)
WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE
• To compete in an environment where established
competitors are heavily committed to the value of
design thinking, you need to create a business culture
that embraces design
• Treat design-aware leadership as a must
• Apply design holistically rather than as a final polish
TAKEAWAYS
WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE
A GROWING 

FEATURE SET
“Your scientists were so preoccupied
with whether or not they could, they
never stopped to think if they should.”
- DR. IAN MALCOLM, JURASSIC PARK
WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE
• Your early users do not
constitute the majority of
your users
• While assumptions can gain
traction early on, growth
dictates that you gather an
accurate understanding of
your audience
IT’S TIME TO MEET YOUR ACTUAL USERS
Source: “Rogers’ bell curve” (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Technology_adoption_lifecycle)
WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE
When you begin monetizing new aspects of your product, 

the process of UX design will help you avoid:
• Diluting your experience with feature bloat
• Designing for marketers instead of real people
• Letting technology dictate the experience
• Creating “me too” products
NEW FEATURES, DONE RIGHT
Source: @charmingrobot “Why UX Matters” 

(https://generalassemb.ly/education/why-ux-matters-dan-maccarone-online-class)
WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE
• UX designers ask the tough
questions to make educated
decisions on what to build
• Investing in UX will help you
build less frivolously
• Remember: 1 new element
can create 2 problems
QUESTION EVERYTHING
VS.
Hi there
Click Me
Or Click Me
Hi there
Click Me
EXERCISE
TIMING
DELIVERABLE
KEY OBJECTIVE(S)
ACTIVITY
Reverse engineer the design thinking of Facebook at
various points in the past.
Whiteboard sketches
2 min
10 min
1. Review your snapshot of Facebook’s profile
2. Discussion: What does the screen design tell you
are the primary business goals vs. the primary
user goals?”
WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALESource: @PCmag http://www.pcmag.com/slideshow/story/320360/10-years-later-facebook-s-design-evolution/14
SNAPSHOT #1 SNAPSHOT #2 SNAPSHOT #3
WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE
• Rely on the UX design process to critically
evaluate the new features that come from growth
• Acknowledge that your user base evolves as you
grow and that you must develop a truthful
understanding of what they need and want
• Ask the tough questions yourself to pave the way
for letting your designers ask them too
TAKEAWAYS
Source:
WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE
EXPANDING TEAMS
“You can use an eraser on the drafting
table or a sledgehammer on the
construction site.”
- FRANK LLOYD WRIGHT
WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE
• You may have been the sole vision behind the early
versions of your product, but you must begin
sharing that role
• The design process teaches the growing team to
share their ideas — no single person has the right
answer all the time
• Formalize your documentation process so that new
employees can learn from past thinking
IT’S OK TO LET GO
Source:
WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE
• You must first realize that designers have
specializations and then you can learn when to
employ those skills
• A facet of your leadership is being able to evaluate
when to hire, when to freelance, and when to
outsource to an agency
• If you are not naturally design savvy, find a trusted
partner/advisor that can help you evaluate options
THE RIGHT DESIGN, AT THE RIGHT TIME
WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE
• A UX designer marries the information gathered
from the business side, the technology side, and the
user’s needs — they need access to all these people
• Observation shows that early-stage design conscious
startups form a 1:5 designer to engineer ratio
• “To achieve great design, you need great business
thinking/doing (to effectively invest in design) and
you need great engineering…” – John Maeda
A WELL BALANCED TEAM
Source: @kpcb @johnmaeda “#DesignInTech Report” (http://www.kpcb.com/design)
WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE
• Maintain a level of involvement in the design process
so that enables you to:

a) trust in letting go of some product vision 

b) accurately evaluate available resources
• Open up the design conversation to all areas of the
company and give your UX designers access to both
the team at large and the end-users
• Share design thinking through formal documentation
TAKEAWAYS
QUESTIONS?
@JEFFTHETURTLE
Reach out anytime:
@GA_BOSTON

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Why UX Matters As You Scale

  • 1. WHY UX MATTERS 
 AS YOU SCALE Mike Scopino Experience Designer
  • 2. WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE • I help businesses build digital tools that enrich their users’ real world experiences. • I teach General Assembly’s User Experience Design course. Next session starts 7/20! MIKE SCOPINO EXPERIENCE DESIGN CONSULTANT @JEFFTHETURTLE
  • 3. WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE • The concept of a user experience encompasses people’s emotional and physical interactions with all aspects of a product or service • UX design is a methodical approach to defining those interactions that a person has with a product • Design is not a series of deliverables • Design is not a one size fits all solution LET’S DEFINE UX
  • 4. WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE HERE’S WHY 
 IT MATTERS
  • 5. WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE • Monetization 
 The experience changes as your target audience evolves and your feature set expands • An Expanding Team
 The holistic vision for the product can no longer exist in one brain • Bigger Competition
 You will vie for market share in a competitive landscape that already invests heavily in design YOUR BUSINESS’S GROWTH LEADS TO…
  • 6. WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE • Mobile devices, omni-channel commerce, and the growing internet of things create an environment where digital experiences are suddenly always present • This drastically increases daily interactions • “A pain point can become a ‘pain plane’ on mobile. That’s a lot of ouch.” – John Maeda • People will naturally lean toward experiences that offer the least friction WHY NOW? Source: @kpcb @johnmaeda “#DesignInTech Report” (http://www.kpcb.com/design)
  • 7. WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE THE COMPETITIVE LANDSCAPE
  • 8. “Being designers, they thought we were people that worked for people that ran companies.” - BRIAN CHESKY, CO-FOUNDER OF AIRBNB
  • 9. WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE • 6 major venture capital firms invited designers onto their teams (for the first time) in the last year • 13 of the 2014 Fortune 125 companies have executive-level positions for design — Nike’s CEO is a designer! • 27 startups that were co-founded by designers have been acquired by major tech companies since 2010 INVESTMENT IN DESIGN BY THE NUMBERS Source: @kpcb @johnmaeda “#DesignInTech Report” (http://www.kpcb.com/design)
  • 10. WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE • Successful tech businesses are realizing that Moore’s Law is no longer a path to satisfied customers • Designers are not relegated to making interfaces look better, they are an active participant in product development • “Design shouldn’t be designated a specific function or industry. The discipline is just as fundamental as technology and profit are to a business… It should be considered part of every role.” – Sahil Lavingia, founding designer at Pinterest HOLISTIC INVOLVEMENT Source: @fastcompany
 (http://www.fastcodesign.com/1669189/pinterests-founding-designer-shares-his-dead-simple-design-philosophy)
  • 11. WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE • To compete in an environment where established competitors are heavily committed to the value of design thinking, you need to create a business culture that embraces design • Treat design-aware leadership as a must • Apply design holistically rather than as a final polish TAKEAWAYS
  • 12. WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE A GROWING 
 FEATURE SET
  • 13. “Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they never stopped to think if they should.” - DR. IAN MALCOLM, JURASSIC PARK
  • 14. WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE • Your early users do not constitute the majority of your users • While assumptions can gain traction early on, growth dictates that you gather an accurate understanding of your audience IT’S TIME TO MEET YOUR ACTUAL USERS Source: “Rogers’ bell curve” (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Technology_adoption_lifecycle)
  • 15. WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE When you begin monetizing new aspects of your product, 
 the process of UX design will help you avoid: • Diluting your experience with feature bloat • Designing for marketers instead of real people • Letting technology dictate the experience • Creating “me too” products NEW FEATURES, DONE RIGHT Source: @charmingrobot “Why UX Matters” 
 (https://generalassemb.ly/education/why-ux-matters-dan-maccarone-online-class)
  • 16. WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE • UX designers ask the tough questions to make educated decisions on what to build • Investing in UX will help you build less frivolously • Remember: 1 new element can create 2 problems QUESTION EVERYTHING VS. Hi there Click Me Or Click Me Hi there Click Me
  • 17. EXERCISE TIMING DELIVERABLE KEY OBJECTIVE(S) ACTIVITY Reverse engineer the design thinking of Facebook at various points in the past. Whiteboard sketches 2 min 10 min 1. Review your snapshot of Facebook’s profile 2. Discussion: What does the screen design tell you are the primary business goals vs. the primary user goals?”
  • 18. WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALESource: @PCmag http://www.pcmag.com/slideshow/story/320360/10-years-later-facebook-s-design-evolution/14 SNAPSHOT #1 SNAPSHOT #2 SNAPSHOT #3
  • 19. WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE • Rely on the UX design process to critically evaluate the new features that come from growth • Acknowledge that your user base evolves as you grow and that you must develop a truthful understanding of what they need and want • Ask the tough questions yourself to pave the way for letting your designers ask them too TAKEAWAYS Source:
  • 20. WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE EXPANDING TEAMS
  • 21. “You can use an eraser on the drafting table or a sledgehammer on the construction site.” - FRANK LLOYD WRIGHT
  • 22. WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE • You may have been the sole vision behind the early versions of your product, but you must begin sharing that role • The design process teaches the growing team to share their ideas — no single person has the right answer all the time • Formalize your documentation process so that new employees can learn from past thinking IT’S OK TO LET GO Source:
  • 23. WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE • You must first realize that designers have specializations and then you can learn when to employ those skills • A facet of your leadership is being able to evaluate when to hire, when to freelance, and when to outsource to an agency • If you are not naturally design savvy, find a trusted partner/advisor that can help you evaluate options THE RIGHT DESIGN, AT THE RIGHT TIME
  • 24. WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE • A UX designer marries the information gathered from the business side, the technology side, and the user’s needs — they need access to all these people • Observation shows that early-stage design conscious startups form a 1:5 designer to engineer ratio • “To achieve great design, you need great business thinking/doing (to effectively invest in design) and you need great engineering…” – John Maeda A WELL BALANCED TEAM Source: @kpcb @johnmaeda “#DesignInTech Report” (http://www.kpcb.com/design)
  • 25. WHY UX MATTERS AS YOU SCALE • Maintain a level of involvement in the design process so that enables you to:
 a) trust in letting go of some product vision 
 b) accurately evaluate available resources • Open up the design conversation to all areas of the company and give your UX designers access to both the team at large and the end-users • Share design thinking through formal documentation TAKEAWAYS