application design

Application Design Process

Designing Applications for Desktop, Mobile and Enterprise comes with special challenges to meet the needs of business entity, stakeholders and end users. We employ a top-down and bottom-up approach that remains flexible within an agile environment.

Past projects have included design and redesign that involved N-Tiered Systems, Command Line Interface, Client Server, Multi-Tiered Enterprise, Mobile First and Localization that included Asian Characters.

  • DISCOVER: Process starts with defining the problem(s) through insights gained through the discovery process which includes:
    • Stakeholders help in the definition of Business Goals, Features & Functions, Personas, Mindsets, Competitors, Limitations and Metrics.
    • Data helps provide answers through Internal Analysis, Competitive Analysis, Content Analysis and Analysis of a Domain Expert.
    • User Research is used to inform and create models to further understand motivations, triggers and behaviors for specific tasks.


  • DEFINE: Data and insight gathered through the discovery process informs characteristics that will be used to create working models of users, their behaviors and what motivating trigger(s) will prompt a preferred or desired response.
  • Process is concerned with two distinct areas of data to explore:
    • Understanding Users is vital in order to provide the correct arguments of conversion. This includes: Persona(s) Creation, Empathy Maps, Journey and/or Experience of User through paths and scenarios, Storyboards that describe User through one or many Paths or Flows, User Scenarios that describe Motivations and Specific Attributes of User Modeling.
    • Redefining Problems is possible once Business Objectives are compared and contrasted to User Models and are influenced by Prioritization of Insights, Affinity Maps, Assumptions, Problem Identification, Value Proposition and Situational Issues.


  • IDEATE: Insights are developed through the ideation process that blends user need with business objectives into several working IA/UX candidates to be considered. Ideate consist of the following:
    • Workshops provide the means for Team Building, Brainstorming, Benchmarking and Card Sorting exercises. The insights gained through multiple sessions are then applied to the second phase of the Ideation Process.
    • Creation of Mind Maps, Affinity Maps, User Scenarios, Storyboards, Successful Task/Path Journeys and Information Architecture.


  • PROTOTYPE: Rapid Build/Test Cycles provides the ability to validate multiple concepts and feature sets. Changes, enhancements and user flows can be examined to determine the top few candidates for general release.
  • There are three specific prototype that are employed and consist of:
    • Hand Drawn Paper Prototypes provide a quick and dirty view of Simulated Interactions within the Users Environment that is easily Tested and Validated.
    • Wire Frames are created that display Detailed Flows and User Interactions that are then Tested. Testing feedback is then applied to revisions to then be tested.
    • High Fidelity Prototypes follow once a final candidate is selected. Standardized prototyping tools are used, allowing multiple team members to contribute based on role and discipline. HIFI versions look and act as fully functioning Applications that can provide a simulation of the actual.


  • EVALUATE: The Evaluation Process is concerned with answering one question… Were business and user solutions found within the Application Design Process? This question is answered by examining the results of Usability Testing and can include: Shadowing, System Usability Scale Surveys, External Expert Evaluation and A/B Testing. Final Usability Testing occurs and is based on three criteria:
    1. Can a user accomplish a particular task?
    2. Can a user accomplish a particular task and understand the sequence and end result?
    3. Can a user accomplish a particular task, understand the sequence and end result and then see value?


    The Synthesis and Analysis of data will clearly provide the best release candidate that has addressed benefits and eliminated risk.
Application Design Model
Application Design Process

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Our Design Lab and Studio is located in
The Financial District of San Francisco

222 Front Street • FL6
San Francisco • CA • 94111
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