I've been designing digital experiences professionally for 7 years, with my last 3 focusing on User Experience. I'm passionate about my work in making sure it not only looks beautiful, but also is successful and meets user needs. In addition to design, I've also spent a good amount of time in front end development. Having this experience provides added perspective when designing products to ensure a smooth transition from concept to implementation.
I follow the principles of Design Thinking and Lean UX as an approach to my work. By taking the time upfront to form an understanding of the problems at hand and then continually validating and learning from your users through this process, it ensures a successful end product that brings value to both the business and its users. Read below to learn the gist of this approach.
The first step in any project is a learning phase. This involves understanding both business goals as well as user needs. This comes in the form of interviews, surveys, workshops and more. If there is an existing product, this would also include evaluative research on the current product. This phase will result in insights that will help to inform the product going forward.
Once there is a firm understanding of the problems we're trying to solve, I move into a creation phase. This starts with whiteboarding/sketching and moves into digital wireframes as confidence grows. The purpose of this creation phase is to design a flow that can be tested with users. This is not where visual design comes in, as that would be a waste of time if the direction is not aligned with users.
Refining the product starts with validating with users that they find value in what has been created. It's OK to be off here, as that's the whole reason for keeping things minimal up to this. After testing with a group of users, I then synthesise my findings once again to inform changes to the product. This cycle of build/measure/learn will be repeated as we continue to validate with users that we are on the right track. As the direction solidifies, visual design and polish make their way in.