Design with Double Diamond
I believe most of you will agree that design is a creative process. However, the process of formulating a solution can be a maze to navigate. Often, we find ourselves stuck so deep in the process, we do not know how to retract anymore.
Throughout the many years of formulating ideas and solving problems for our clients, we have learned that no one model works for every challenge. In fact, we combine methods to make it work for us, as well as for our clients in this ever-evolving and dynamic environment we are in — tech.
Whether you are trying to develop a new product or solve a problem, we think The Double Diamond model is a good start. This model was made official by The British Council in 2005 as a general method to design for designers and non-designers alike.
If the name does not ring any bell, don’t worry. Let’s go through it together.
The 4D Process
Anchoring the model, the two diamonds represent four key exploration processes as follows:
The first diamond highlights the fact that we should understand, not assume. This process requires interaction and spending time with the audience. Something interesting the Council learned is that all companies were user-oriented, which translates into focusing on users’ needs, wants and behaviour.
The insights collected from the Discover process will be gathered to define the challenge differently. This is a filtering of the ideas and data taken from stage one. It also sets the context for product development, assesses how realistic is the solution, of what can be done and analyzes how feasible it is.
The second diamond emphasizes the process of answering and defining the problem in different ways. This process requires collaboration and crowd-sourcing ideas with a range of different people.
Interesting fact: Microsoft’s philosophy is that designers should “eat their own dog food” — which means designers are to use their own creations in their work, so they can be in the user’s shoes.
The last state of The Double Diamond model is the delivery stage. This includes testing the solution (or product) before it is officially launched. Iteration will take place at this stage as part of continuous improvement to the outcomes.
In the digital world, no idea is ever ‘finished’ so constant feedback allows the design team to go through this non-linear process. So forget the race to launch, and brace for the marathon of improvement.
Note that this model approach can only yield success when the core principles are adopted. The essential principles include:
Empathy plays an important role in making or breaking this way of innovation. Without prioritising effort to understand those who are involved, the prescription will never be able to address key areas of the challenge.
Co-create Through Open Communication
There will be pushbacks when there is innovation. It is essential to communicate and help people to gain a shared understanding and vision of both the problem and the outcome. This is critical at the stage of development simply because there’s no certainty until proven effective. Never give up when challenged. In fact, see it as an opportunity to sharpen the solution.
One important mindset in adopting this model is to be open to feedback for improvement and discovery at a later stage that will benefit the outcome. While most input should be gathered at the Discover stage, there are always ways to make things better. Be patient and go forward, one step at a time.
This model is proven effective and widely used by various industries to address different challenges. While every designer has different ways of doing things, it is always good to have a road map that allows our energy and efforts to be more focused to address what’s essential. Moreover, a model like this will come in very handy in project management as well as customer engagement.
We’ll keep that for our next story. Until next time.
XIMNET is a digital solutions provider with two decades of track records specialising in web application development, AI Chatbot and system integration.
XIMNET is launching a brand new way of building AI Chatbot with XYAN. Get in touch with us to find out more.