Let's be honest, this is the real reason you're here. You want to get a sense of my process as a designer. So instead of making you sift through all my case studies, I'll give it to you right here. I follow the 5 D's. I'm sure some of you know what these are but if you don't know you're about to find out. Just keep scrolling!
Step 1. This is the beginning. This is where we get to have fun and start to interact with our users. This is where you interview users, study their behaviors using your application and look for pain points that can be fixed. It's all about looking for opportunities to keep pushing the bar forward and making improvements.
This is also where you talk with key stakeholders in the business, and find out what is important to them. This is super important for the next step in my process. DEFINE.
Step 2. This is where we synthesize the information we gathered from the discover phase. We want to gather all those pain points, gaps in the industry that we discovered, and any other opportunities we may have found to create our problem statements. While doing this it's also important to look for overlaps between the business needs and user needs to find the most important problems to tackle first.
That's just one half of this phase though. The other half is ideating on those problems and exploring potential solutions. Whiteboard sessions, card sorting, journey mapping, sketching, and a bunch of other tools can be used to help generate a clear plan of attack. An attack that will be executed in the next step. DESIGN.
Step 3. This is the step that we all want to skip to. Hands down this is most designers favorite step and it's easy to see why. This is where we (finally) get to open up Figma, or Sketch, or XD, or whatever tool you prefer and actually make the stuff we've been talking about for the previous 2 steps. We get to make wireframes, hi-fidelity screens, and interactive prototypes that let us flex our design muscles.
Don't be fooled though! We still need to test our work to make sure it meets the needs of our users and adequately solves their problem. As designers we don't have all the answers, but with the use of data and maintaining an open line of communication with our users we can have checks and balances in place to make sure we stay on track. Speaking of track this is where we pass the baton to the devs in our next step. DEVELOP.
Step 4. This is where our perfect design go to die! No, I'm kidding. This is actually the opposite. This is where our design go to be brought to life. This is where we package our assets and hand our designs off to the developers to make them a reality.
One major thing that we all need to remember before this step is to include developers in the process as early as possible. It saves us so much time and effort when we do. Including devs early in our process can help us identify potential holes in our designs. We can also discover places where our designs may be out of scope for the devs to build within the given deadline for a project or potentially any number of other problem that can easily be fixed if spotted early. That way we can all celebrate in the next step. DEPLOY.
Step 5. It's time to celebrate! Whatever we've been working on for who knows how long will finally see the light of day. This is where the feature, or app, or website, or whatever we're working on goes live. This is when people get to use the thing we've been working so hard on, but this isn't the end. It's actually the beginning.
This starts our process all over again. Why? Because now we get to go talk to users and make sure that what we just put out actually works, and we get to go find new problem to conquer.