The journey of people meet product.

Design is about understanding people’s goals within a specific context, what they do to achieve them and what stands in their way.

People are our source of truth, they are users, decision makers, payers.
Products are chosen and used in order to achieve personal goals.

Rationally, a specific set of easily discoverable and usable features will help reach this goal. Emotionally, an end-to-end experience must create a positive emotional response.
People, contexts, and goals change. Designing a product is therefore a never ending process.

This process should be somewhat standardized for efficiency, but also modular for adaptability. Mine has three steps: Understand, Identify, Execute.
Design is about understanding people’s goals within a specific context, what they do to achieve them and what stands in their way.

People are the source of truth, they are the users, the decision maker, the payer.
To achieve said personal goal, a product is chosen and used.  

Rationally, a set of features must help reach the goal, be easily discoverable and usable. Emotionally, the end-to-end experience must create pleasure and a positive emotional response.
People, contexts, goals change... and above all, understanding people is an endless task. Designing a product is therefore a process.

It should be somewhat standardized for efficiency but also modular for adaptability. Here is mine.
Before building a product, I need a certain amount of knowledge. There are different steps and tools to do that.
User Interviews
Maze Design
Google Analytics
Google Optimize
Main User involvement
At this stage, users are involved through qualitative interviews and quantitative analysis.
Scoping the project: Mission, timeline, hypothesis
A mission needs to be quantifiable. “Improving an onboarding” is not enough, an onboarding has steps, each step has a conversion, we focus on one. Because there are multiple ways to solve a problem, clarifying the timeline allocated is also important.
To scope the research, I like to use hypothesis statements. Then, the research becomes about proving or disproving them.
Quantitative analysis
Understand Interface and interaction level issues
Help me focus on a specific area for max impact
Help me discover new customer paths to optimize
Drill down even deeper in an CJ area
understand what people wanted out of the website
Quantitative analysis
As I said earlier, a problem arises within a context when a user has a goal. Interviews help me understand this layer: needs, root causes, desires, emotional responses… In a different area, interviews also help me understand mental models (ex: how do users see the product working?)

One thing I always try to keep in mind is interview bias. The way questions are framed is very important and users don’t always understand their own problems.
Understanding technical and market landscape
I like to talk product ideas with developers early on in a project. Learning about the current and future technological layer gives me insights on feasibility.
A product is always part of an ecosystem. Studying it broadens my mind about problems and solutions. Reverse-engineering (or better reverse-designing) products can also generate new research hypotheses, or uncover new problems.
People who research are not always the ones who plan or execute. So, this here we summarize and structure findings, then collaboratively decide what to build.
Main User involvement
This is more of an internal phase of the design process. Users are involved only if we have trouble moving forward.
Synthesizing people, journey, and pains
Personas are a great way to summarize findings about people, their activities, behavioural traits, wants, frustrations...
After that, I often structure the customer journey by building a story, a visual representation of the  chronological steps.
Finally, I use the CGAR framework to structure painpoints by christalizing: Context, Goals, Activities, and Roadblocks. Context is the environment users are in. Goals are users’ personal objectives in that context. Activities are what users do to reach their goals. Roadblocks prevent activities from happening.
Creating design objectives
Now that we have a clear understanding of the people, their problems, and their journey, it is time to create quantifiable design goals.
For this, I like to use the Lean UX methodology and build design objectives using the following framework.
“We will achieve [business outcome] if [persona] can achieve [user outcome] with [feature]
Here, I execute the design objectives by following a design process from product requirements to high fidelity prototyping.
Adobe Xd
Main User involvement
For product requirements, we use exercises like affinity analysis and card sorting. Then, both moderated and unmoderated testing is done at low and high fidelity level.
Product requirements
This step is about working on the functional and system level of the product, its non visual aspect.

I start by listing features on a document to lay down the main functions that I feel are necessary for the product to work.

Then, I dissect features with user flows that show both user and non-user actions in order to dig deeper into the usability, and the complexity of implementation and operation.
After this, I work on the taxonomy to create a coherent product/information  categorization for their persona.

After that, I think about the navigation to create a coherent world where users feel safe and free.

Finally, I use blockframing to visualize the work and communicate it with the different stakeholders.
Low Fidelity
Time to work on the visual representation of the product.

I always like to start by doing some UX-UI research and ask myself: what existing experiences and elements could be useful here?
Then, I wireframe the product to work on its information and action hierarchy. What do we want users to see and do? vs. What do users actually want to see and do?

I find it useful to prototype at this level of fidelity. It helps me feel the main interactions and features early on.
Now we focus on the who is behind the product by creating a visual and verbal identity.

And now that Wireframes have revealed recurring UI elements, building or using a design system to deploy this brand at scale can bring visual consistency and increase high-fidelity efficiency.
High Fidelity
This stage is about iteratively applying the UI Kit to the wireframes, testing the changes through prototyping, and modifying either the UI kit or the interface thanks to the latest learning.
Here, I find that efficiency strongly depends on how well a design software is used (names, groups, symbols, styles...).
Shipping work
Now that the product is designed and we have validated that it will positively affect users’ experience, it is time to deliver the work to the development team.

With performance in mind, I start by creating an assets directory, organized by features or pages.
Tools like Figma take care of documenting interface level information (fonts, colours, dimensions). To document responsiveness, I use the “breakpoint-extremes method” (I design the smallest and widest display for each breakpoint), combined with written instructions if necessary. Finally, to document interactions, I use dedicated animation or prototyping software.
1. Keep a single source of truth
2. Document the experience, not only the interface
3. Use dedicated tools for designer-developer communication