Since the inception of UX design in 1993, the field has been constantly evolving, changing, and redefining its core concepts. By keeping abreast of the latest trends in technology, communication, and what’s happening worldwide, teams can create products and solutions that will have a meaningful and lasting impact on the people who use their interfaces.
Better Connections With Our Peers, Customers, and Users
Perhaps the most important change that our industry is observing is the emphasis on what users want to see. UX design doesn’t happen in a bubble; everything that we create has the opportunity to cause ripples of change in both the corporate world and everyday society.
Because of this, it is essential for designers to have empathy, think ethically, and constantly be mindful of who their potential users are, directly and indirectly.
Additionally, connection with our peers just as our customers allows us to stay current, relevant, and engaged in the constantly changing world of technology.
At Grand Studio, we foster an environment where designers can always be learning something new – and we recognize that there is always room for improvement. By encouraging our designers to forge new connections and nurture existing ones, we empower them with a thirst for knowledge that will have them searching for new and improved ways to reimagine the world from a UX perspective.
Accessibility: Creating for Everyone, Not Just the Majority
There has been a much-needed societal shift in recent years toward expanding accessibility. In the past, the technology field used to design their products for the majority of the people that would use them and unfortunately ignored the rest.
While there may have been certain inclusionary aspects to the design, such as speech-to-text options for the visually impaired, overall UX design was more concerned with being efficient and visually appealing.
Although we were not immune to this shortcoming, Grand Studio has taken great strides to adjust the way we approach our process. While we have always made an effort to make our designs inclusive, we now include accessibility from the ground up.
Through teamwork, collaboration and co-creation, we strive to ensure that no group is excluded in our designs and that we create our designs from the standpoint of diversity and inclusion.
We believe that one of the most significant changes that the industry will see this year is the inclusion of diverse, socially-aware representations in UX design. In addition, we see more companies beginning to focus on creating more accessible and inclusive designs from the framework up rather than waiting for feedback to incorporate it at a later stage.
Data Accumulation and the Value of Data
Collecting and processing immense amounts of data is easier now than ever before. The problem is no longer in data acquisition but rather in determining what data is relevant and what is superfluous.
As methods of collecting data continue to improve and, in many cases, become automated, it is up to the design teams to decide which metrics are essential for the development of new products, processes, and services.
We foresee a greater emphasis placed on understanding the value of specific data and how that is determined. UX is crucial here to help bring in research methods and critical thinking on how various metrics or data points might impact the people involved in any data-enabled solutions or collections. Working jointly with business stakeholders to craft metrics that measure necessary elements and account for the human factors will allow for a better and more holistic view of incoming data.
The Importance of Data Visualization
Although data visualization and accumulation are not new concepts in the technology field, we see an even greater emphasis on them in the future, especially given the trend towards more data.
Having access to reliable, easy-to-understand data is arguably the most essential aspect of creating a new product or process for any company.
User data shows how your staff or customers are utilizing certain products or systems, but it also informs you how they are using it and how often it is being used and gives insight into how those things could be improved.
At the same time, the data that is being provided must be displayed in an engaging, accessible, and easily digestible way. If too much irrelevant information is included in the visualization, things will get lost in translation.
For example, we worked with the world’s largest fast-food chain when they were trying to improve their efficiency on which foods to cook en masse vs. per order. They instituted a process that collected data on the items ordered most frequently, but the data collection alone wasn’t enough. They needed a visualization that enabled action, so their employees knew what to do with the data.
By showing the restaurant the data in a clear and digestible way, they were able to reduce costs and food waste while simultaneously improving the efficiency of their line staff and reducing downtime.
No Code Technology Will Pave the Way to Greater Innovation
In recent years, No-Code technology has emerged as a solution to the lack of available developers in the technology field. While not prevalent yet, we see this as a way to enable greater access to creating applications, processes, and systems in the near future for designers.
Currently, UX designers are only one-half of the equation for building UX interfaces. With no-code technology, designers can be less dependent on developers, which speeds up the process and drastically increases the potential skillsets available to designers without undergoing lengthy and often expensive training.
As this technology becomes more widely available, designers will be able to implement their ideas directly via graphic user interfaces that allow for drag-and-drop coding. Ideally, this will also reduce the possibility of coding errors that can derail the development process.
Although there is still significant work on the No-Code front for it to be truly viable, we are excited to see what the future holds in this new frontier.
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