What is Human-Centered Design?
Human-Centered Design (HCD) provides an interactive solution development approach that focuses on the users. Leveraging deep knowledge of user needs and requirements, these iterative techniques enable prototyping user-focused solutions and continuous feedback. Above all, HCD aims to deliver focused and meaningful solutions.
Because solutions rely more on advances in artificial intelligence, automation, and robotics, it is crucial to capture and maintain focus on the human aspect of innovation. Without clearly defining the challenge and capturing focused requirements, these kinds of technology solutions can be wasteful, costly, and frustrating to the end-users. HCD strives to create innovative products, services, and solutions through creative and collaborative practices.
How does the HCD approach work?
The HCD process has three phases that engage the customer throughout the entire solution development lifecycle: the Inspiration Phase, the Ideation Phase, and the Implementation Phase.
First, the Inspiration Phase focuses on learning directly from the client through immersion in their environment. This phase is focused on in-depth research and the identification of requirements. The Inspiration Phase is about adaptive learning, being open to creative possibilities, and trusting that by adhering to end-user needs, the ideas generated will evolve into the right solution.
Next, the Ideation Phase contains two parts: Synthesis and Prototyping. Synthesis brings together the needs and requirements learned during the Inspiration Phase and organizes them into themes, insights, and potential solutions opportunities. The second part of the Ideation Phase is Prototyping; expanding outputs from Synthesis into testable processes, products or services. Synthesis and Prototyping form a cyclical process of testing prototypes, getting feedback, and iterating that is key to creating an effective, innovative solution. This approach is designed to test the desirability, feasibility, and viability of solutions with end-users on a small scale with minimal risk.
Finally, during the Implementation Phase, the complete functional solution is developed and executed. During this phase, special attention is paid to how the decided upon solution will impact the client environment and how it will be implemented. Even after implementation, HCD encourages ongoing feedback and continuous refinement of the concept.
Using a human-centered approach to design and develop solutions results in substantial benefits for organizations and end users. While user-centered design focuses on improving the interface between users and technology, HCD concentrates on actively involving the end-users throughout the development process. As a result, solutions designed using human-centered methods increase usability and productivity while improving quality and user experience. HCD is more successful by giving ownership and control of the solution to the customer.
EGlobalTech and HCD
At EGlobalTech, we leverage the creative and iterative aspects of human-centered design to develop and implement optimized solutions based on direct user engagement.
Would you like to find out how EGT can employ HCD methods for your organization? Contact us today.
Want to learn more about HCD? Our Human-Centered Design Delivers Focused and Meaningful Solutions White Paper provides more details on the approach.