User Experience needs to be a part of the culture and not a "task done".
At Razor, User Experience & Design thinking is not owned by a single department, but is a part of the process and culture.
Nothing useless can be truly beautiful.
If an application doesn't work or responds slowly, a user will abandon it or get frustrated making it useless. This is why to us, user experience starts with people and runs deep into the technical details.
During our discovery process or a Razor Sprint, there are various points where User Experience tools & Design thinking practices take place. Not all projects have the same starting point. Some are just a nebulous idea and need forming and exploring, some are existing, maybe legacy products where there is a lot of existing behaviour and some may be extensions to an existing system and then everything in-between.
In simple terms, we start by understanding what the objectives are. These should be aligned with the wider business objectives, direction and strategies.
We then dig deeper and begin to understand the problem in depth. This may include creating personas and conducting contextual inquiries. From this we gain clarity on 'what' using tools such as user story mapping and value stream mapping.
There are many tools that are used above and beyond what we have outlined here. Each challenge requires a different blend and each scenario requires different outputs.
Let's provide a few examples that should give a better understanding.
The cycle then comes back around and starts again for continuous improvement. In many cases, ideas, concepts and experiments are conceived on paper, refined and then tested in production using A/B and multi-variant testing using a variety of tools and always with a specific goal with measurements in place.
Finance for Sheffield had a concept; to provide an alternative to the high-interest pay-day lenders that cause more problems than they resolve. To enable them to reach more people they wanted to take their ethical and personal approach on line. This meant that a standard approach where information is collected from the user in a basic form wasn't going to cut it, something more personal, simpler and effective was required.
The process followed was to first understand the users by conducting contextual inquiries, then forming personas and then onto developing the user story map and service design. Ideation was then conducted with sketches exploring the possibilities. These ideas were developed, honed and refined with low fidelity user testing and once a great concept and design was arrived at, the technology took over. Still continuing the core values of user experience, the technology amplified the journey building on the work done.