• Bako Industries Blog

    Bako Industries Blog

User Experience has gone through a lot of changes as our discipline has integrated with business. One of the biggest, Baruch Sachs says, is that we need the time to do our jobs. This article talks about practical ways to help stakeholders understand the rational behind UX design.

Moving to a UX-Critical Culture :: UXmatters

For decades, we’ve been fighting to ensure that User Experience gets considered during product development. Now, more than ever before, I find myself fighting a different kind of fight, to ensure that teams allocate the proper time to User Experience for us to be effective.

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UX designers have the tools to impact much more than digital spaces. And as Zack Gehin talks about in this article, we must think beyond digital design in order to make better digital design.

Stop limiting your product designs to the digital space. Here’s why.

People will ditch your ancient 2D app experience for a product that offers an experience that extends beyond the digital space.
People prefer at-their-fingertip, instantly gratifying, enjoyable experiences from companies that empower their beliefs and ability to be successful in their material environment.
We are in the age of material and digital environment applications and consumers are demanding products that enhance their daily lives — enhance their reality. People prefer beautiful apps that make them feel the way they desire to feel.

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It’s popular for companies of all kinds to promote a “friendly” design aesthetic. However, if everyone is jumping on the bandwagon, does your friendly and unpretentious site really stand out against the crowd? This article explores these questions and more.

The Dark Side Of “Friendly” Design

Everywhere you look a “friendly” brand stares back at you. Help Remedies sells doll-sized packets of over-the-counter medicine with tongue-in-cheek labels…

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I found this pretty interesting take. Agile as a process to get products out the door is fine, but when you rely on it to build the right product, you’re bound to run into trouble because agile is simply not designed to innovate, only iterate.

I have been interviewing a lot of folks around the world about their current design operations (whether it is intentionally so or not, it exists). What I have heard is that the vast majority of design organizations are working in a Scrum or similar capital-A, Agile environment. There are many exceptions, but the overwhelming majority are working in 2-wk sprints, sometimes getting a sprint-0 in to do “discovery”.

View story at Medium.com

As we end the year, it is interesting to take a look back at the state of UX in 2016. Leah Buley looks at where we’ve been in three areas, People, Process, and Impact.

From “The State of UX in 2016” by Leah Buley:

We have seen big investments to buy, build or bolt-on design programmes in recent years. A few events stand out in my mind: IBM’s announcement it would earmark $100m and hire 1,000 designers in 2012; the tumult of design agency mergers and acquisitions through 2014 and 2015; Mike Bracken on stage at the O’Reilly Design Conference earlier this year reporting the jaw-dropping fact that the UK Government Digital Service has saved UK citizens £4.1billion.

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It seems intuitive, but it is not enough to say the right words. The tone of voice, body language, and words are always communicating to others your true intentions. What we believe invariably affects what we do. What we do speaks louder than words (to borrow the colloquialism). Next time you are in a crucial conversation, stop and ask yourself, “Am I honoring this person? Can I let go of hostility?”

With the shout of “Action!” John walked onto the set, hit his mark, and delivered his opening line: “You said you’d have product to me by noon, but it never arrived. What happened?” Note: the script we had written contained no inflammatory words, insults, threats, or attacks—just a simple description of the problem followed by a diagnostic question. John delivered the correct words—no problem there—but he said them with such force and disgust that the other actor nearly melted.

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Recently, I had the privilege of writing for the Cooper Journal about how Goal-Directed Design makes a lot of sense for heavily regulated industries. A few key points are using personas and scenarios to get early buy-in from stakeholders, building a shared vision for the project team, and discovering ideas that actually have merit (before you get all the approvals and launch).

Working in the insurance industry, an industry saddled with stiff regulations, has several implications for the design team. Generally, this means submitting each page to an internal review process and then to every state for their approval. If after filing there are additional changes, re-submitting a particular webpage earns extra scrutiny, increasing the chance that edits will be necessary prior to launch. As a result, every A/B test, every possible change, must be thought out ahead of time, without proving it first in production. Otherwise, the changes must be filed all over again. Because of these challenges, our digital experience and design team has adopted Cooper’s Goal-Directed Design (GDD) approach.

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Tempted to dump your content on Medium? Think that Facebook might be a good place to write content? Changes to a platform could be disastrous if you don’t maintain content on your own site.

From “Digital Sharecropping: The Most Dangerous Threat to Your Content Marketing Strategy”

It wasn’t Amazon that killed them, or the proliferation of free content on the web, or the crappy economy.

They closed the store because they were leasing their big, comfortable building … and when that lease ran out, their landlord tripled the rent.

Literally overnight, their business model quit working. Revenues simply wouldn’t exceed costs. A decision made by another party, one they had no control over, took a wonderful business and destroyed it.

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Trouble selling your company or client on your UX work? This article has some practical advice.

Now, more than ever before, I find myself fighting a different kind of fight, to ensure that teams allocate the proper time to User Experience for us to be effective.

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