LEAN UX: Applying Lean Principle To Improve User Experience (book summary)
I read a book by Jeff Gothelf titled “LEAN UX” which I find very helpful as a UX designer, the author outlined some of the principles of creating a product in a collaborative way with a cross-functional team based on what the user what.
WHAT IS LEAN UX?
Lean UX, according to Jeff Gothelf “ is the practice of bringing the nature of a product to light faster, in a collaborative, cross-functional way that reduces the emphasis on thorough documentation while increasing the focus on building a shared understanding of the product experienced being designed.
lean UX breaks the barrier of documentation or big design upfront, it is a process based on assumption or hypothesis that needs validation through constant feedback from the user and communication across a team, There three(3) basic foundation of lean UX which the author outlined in the book are:
The concept of lean UX is built on the design thinking process because it allows the designer and the people(the team) behind the product understand what the user needs and what is not good for the products.
Communication and Collaboration
In the book the author title this foundation “Agile software development” but the reason behind this is just the team and user to be in constant communication based on research and feedback, this way large documentation behind the creation of a product is being avoided.
The author coined this phrase from the book “LEAN THE STARTUP”, this process involves the team building an MVP(minimum viable product) to test with the user and know some issue with the product so it can be iterated with the feedback, another reason for this is to validate the assumption made about the product or in some cases about the user.
Process Of Lean UX
There some methods or process behind Lean UX, this process is what makes product creation fast and user-centric. they are; Declaring an assumption, Creating an MVP, Running an experiment and feedback /research.
Declaring An Assumption
This is the first step in the process, declaring an assumption is gives us an idea about the product and user, there are ways to come about declaring an assumption.
- Assumption gives the team a voice, through this way everyone has one problem to solve, it is the starting point. There are ways to come about an assumption; a thorough analysis of a product and how the user uses the product, competitor research, current goals of the product etc.
- Hypothesis: This is like a statement gotten from the assumption it is the” problem statement”.
- Outcome: This is the solution we are trying to create for our product and user.
- Persona: This is a model used to create the user of the product, this is done by understanding whom you are building the product for.
- Feature: This is the idea behind the solution you are trying to create for your user.
- Collaborative Design: we all think designing is only meant for the designer alone but in lean UX,design is a collaborative process that can be done together through team idea generation; where all team member comes up with ideas(sketches) of how the product will look like and creating a design system, this process speeds up the work fast and create consistency amongst team member.
The goal of an MVP is to validate our assumption, there are some things to consider when creating an MVP;
- is the solution usable?
- is there value in our feature we are offering?
- is there a need for the solution we are designing?
These question needs to be asked before creating an MVP, the things that should go into the MVP/prototypes are the important user experience and some business goals.
PS: MVP must not be a fully designed product, according to the author an MVP can come in the form of wireframes, sketches or even non-prototypes MVP such as an email, a page with a single CTA button, a sign-up form etc remember that the goal for creating an MVP is to validate our assumption.
Feedback and Research
Research is an ongoing process in lean UX because it is broken down into smaller part so that it can fit into the ongoing process, in lean UX research is a collaborative discovery between team members and users. the author outlined somethings to look out for in research:
- try to look for a certain pattern that occurs.
- verify from other sources.
For feedback there are also ways to collect feedback;
- simple email forms
- from customer care
- Search log
- site analysis
- A/B testing
As a designer, entrepreneur or person working a startup lean UX is the fastest way to go about the creation of a product for the user, it is a continuous process as far as the product is still alive.