Ask DN: What is your opinion on Lean UX?

almost 9 years ago from Bjarke Daugaard, UX Lead and Corporate Entrepreneur @ Danske Bank MobileLife

  • Mike BulajewskiMike Bulajewski, almost 9 years ago

    Lean and other agile practices were created to solve a specific problem: software projects are delivered late and over budget, and requirements have changed. The solution is to increase efficiency and adapt more quickly to changes.

    Design cares about a different problem: products are poorly matched to user needs and contexts. The solution is various methods for a) grounding the design process in knowledge about users and b) evaluating the suitability of the product for users.

    These are distinct goals, and trying to solve both problems at once creates competing priorities for an organization. They do have one thing in common: the importance of iteration. But Lean is poorly adapted to addressing the design problem because it doesn't include reliable need discovery or evaluation methods, and in fact recommends unreliable evaluation methods like reviewing prototypes with non-users like the software development team.

    Lean makes up for the lack of reliable methods by increasing the speed of iteration, which may or may not work. If you build a table with unreliable and uncalibrated measuring tools, you might be able to make it work by cutting and recutting your materials until you find a combination that fits together. Or you could just calibrate your tools.

    4 points