To create a perfect UX design, businesses must take interest in the users and their needs. When creating a UXD, the team must focus on developing a vision that matches the end users' story. At no point should the vision be ambiguous with respect to the target audience. Right from creating meaningful user stories to creating wireframes that depict the proposed idea, product or service as a value addition to the users' lives, sprint planning focuses on not just the users' needs but also on business goals.
The first thing that the UXD team should do is to prepare well in advance and stay ahead of the sprint by at least one step. The team should invest in research and planning for creating a design before the development phase begins.
- Step one is to understand the concept of the design, which the company's product management team contributes to.
- One of the best practices that UX designers should follow is to participate - not just in the design process but also in the background with the business team. They must be proactive in generating ideas and right from the user research and planning stage to wireframing.
- Also, UX practitioners must be a part of the product development team. They actively contribute to the development of the initial business strategy to determine what is built and what should be done first to get the process started.
User stories to wireframe development
The user stories are provided by the business. These stories tell the UXD team the "what", "who" and "why" of the design requirements. Based on the discussion or story time, the Business Analyst can come up with more relevant and detailed user stories. The UXD team can use card sorting for organizing the available information and identify different categories of the target audience.
The information or organized user stories are then analyzed via white boarding, which enables the team to share their feedback with the business to get the initial draft approved. The UXD starts working on the approved user stories and whiteboard draft and creates initial wireframes. These wireframes are tested for the level of UX quality they deliver.
For more efficient results, the UXD team can use tools like Crazyegg, which allows you to see where the users click to understand their behavior better or Feng-gui, which enables you to see how your users see the wireframe, so that you can figure out which areas are getting notices and which are not by the users. These tools also recommend changes based on user behavior, which enables you to change the wireframes accordingly.
Testing wireframes is not just a one-step process. It is, in fact, an ongoing procedure that the team should carry on with even after the launch of the website or software. Testing wireframes before finally implementing them in your website or software design will create a win-win situation - it will let businesses to make customers look at what they want them to see, without letting the customers get even a hint that they are being influenced by the design of the website or software.
Moving on - Approving wireframes
Rigorous testing of the wireframe templates will enable the team to come up with a final wireframe that can actually meet the business' goals and the users' expectations. Coming to a consensus on the wireframes is not the tough part here. Getting the architects and business as well as the development team to agree on the finalized wireframes and getting to work on the UI development process authorized by the head of the UXD team is important.
Getting the team members to "buy-in" to the concept, the design and the process that has been approved can be a challenge that most Agile team leaders face. Achieving a complete team buy-in does not only mean getting the team to work on the agreed wireframe designs or templates. It is about trying to collaborate the diverse thinking processes of each member and enabling them to adjust their thinking style to suit the overall project goals and processes involved. It is making not just one person, but the entire team responsible for bringing in ideas, making decisions and even mistakes. The sprint can be considered a successful one, only when the team leaders manage to get the whole team in and complete the approved UXD process as scheduled.