Silicon Valley Business Catalyst Blog

User Experience Focused Product Team

Posted by Grace Hu-Morley on Wednesday, January 14, 2009 Under: User Experience






If you’re a product manager starting to add user-centered design processes to product development to create more user-friendly products, consider how the product creation team will look like.

First of all, congratulations in recognizing that the revenue stream will continue as long as the customer experience is agreeable.  Just having this bit of knowledge will help you get closer to user-friendly products.  If you still don’t see why usability is important, read my post called “Poor Experience Equals Poor Revenue”.  

You can’t just have great designers on the development team.  You need people who are trained in user-centered design processes.  Just because a product is good looking, doesn’t mean it’s usable.  Users will not tolerate the inability to activate important features because the functions are buried in some obscure menu or requires hours of training. 

Here’s a simple product creation team structure that I’ve used several times.  It is a subset of the main product team, which usually consists of many other functional groups.  This sub-team is made up of Product Management, User Experience, and Engineering.  
  • Product Management—finds and quantifies market problems and turns them into product requirements.
  • User Experience—focuses on understanding the user needs and tasks, designing the product interface and assessing the design usefulness.
  • Engineering—focuses on the technology and builds the product.
The three disciplines will overlap.  When disagreements arise between the User Experience and Engineering, Product Management arbitrates and makes the final decisions.

The structure of your product creation team may vary.  As with all projects, make sure that the new usability goals are clear and measurable as well as communicated to all stakeholders.


In : User Experience 


Tags: user experience  usability  user-friendly  product management  product manager  revenue  team  structure  engineering  development  design  user-centered design  grace hu-morley  gracehm.com  silicon valley business catalyst 
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My motivation to begin this blog is to share my ideas mainly around technical marketing management, specifically product management and product marketing in the Silicon Valley. I am passionate about learning and want to help others who are also interested in building their expertise.

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