UX planning helps organizations and UX teams
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Published on March 19, 2015
User experience (UX) planning is different from project planning or even project management. UX planning begins at the start of a project, and determines the type of UX resources that are required for any given project. The planning considers what type of research is needed, how use case scenarios will be determined, the fidelity level of prototypes that will be created, along with the level of wireframes that are needed for development. The planning process also considers the level of documentation required for developers, and any assets that are needed. In short, UX planning creates the roadmap for a successful project.
While research helps you develop a clear understanding of what items are essential for a project to succeed from a user’s perspective, at the UX planning stage you’ll first determine what type of research will occur. Will there be interviews, surveys, heat maps, and eye tracking? Are you working with existing users or determining prospective users? The planning helps the UX team clearly understand their goals and objectives.
Similarly, planning determines the range of user scenarios you anticipate creating for a project, and what type of resources are needed for prototyping, testing, and eventually wireframes. As each project has different needs, effective UX planning also helps the UX team and the organization as a whole understand required time, budget and resources for a project. Having a UX plan in place helps you understand how long the UX portion of a website or app development project will take.
Understanding the entire UX process is a critical part to UX planning. A user experience course, such as UX Design Principles offers a survey of all that is required in a typical UX workflow. Understanding the entire UX process makes it possible to more effectively plan UX projects.
UX planning is beneficial to both the company and end user in increasing productivity, creating websites and apps that are engaging and focused on results by eliminating unnecessary steps for an effective user experience.
About the author
Jennifer Smith is a user experience designer, Photoshop expert, educator and author based in Boston. She is the author of more than 20 books on design tools and processes, including Adobe Creative Cloud for Dummies, Adobe Creative Cloud Digital Classroom, and Photoshop Digital Classroom. She has been awarded a Microsoft MVP three times for her work with user experience design in creating apps for touch, desktop, and mobile devices.
Jennifer delivers UX training and UX consulting for large Fortune 100 companies, small start-ups, and independent software vendors. She has been hired by Adobe and Microsoft to deliver training workshops to their staff, and has traveled to Asia, Europe, India, the Middle East, and across the U.S. to deliver courses and assist on UX design projects. She has extensive knowledge of modern Windows UX Design, having worked closely with the Windows team to create educational material and deliver UX workshops to key partners globally on behalf of Microsoft. Jennifer works with a wide range of prototyping tools including Fireworks, Photoshop, Illustrator, Blend for Visual Studio, and Balsamiq.