Design Artefacts Part 1: Introduction | February 21, 2008
I’ve decided to start a quick series of posts on design artefacts. Basically all the documents, diagrams, designs and other outputs you create during the design process. These artefacts include the following items, although I’m sure you can think of more. As the series progresses I’ll link all the items up for ease of navigation.
- Content Inventory
- Competitor Analysis
- Personas and Wireframes
- Site Maps and User Flow Diagrams
- Low Fidelity Paper Prototypes
- Interactive Prototypes
- Usability Testing Reports
- Mood Boards
- Rapid Design Iterations
- Page Designs
- HTML/CSS Templates
These artefacts are often called ‘deliverables’ as they tend to get sent to clients for formal sign-off. Sadly I think we’ve got so fixated with the project management value of these ‘deliverables’ we’ve started to overlook their real value.
During this series I’m going to argue that the benefit of these documents is formative rather than summative. That, rather than being a milestone for checking the validity and progress of your designs, they are actually critical to the formation of the design itself.
If this is the case, which I believe it is, I’m also going to suggest that we stop treating them as traditional ‘deliverables’ and handing them over to clients for approval. Instead I’m going to suggest that we work with our clients in a more collaborative and iterative manner, using a process of passive approval instead.
Posted at February 21, 2008 3:54 PM