You have picked your first project to work on – be it your own business, something personal, your own portfolio, new job or even better a paid client… generally the first step to kicking things off is understanding what is the problem you are looking to solve.
Often this phase of work is considered ‘Requirements Gathering’.
What are some of the activities we might complete as part of an initial phase of requirements gathering work?
You might decide to spend some time reading articles, searching the web and putting together some short summaries based on the background research that you conduct.
Talk to People
Speak with the various stakeholders involved with the project and gather some background feedback about the project.
This often reveals some amazing insights into things like:
- What worked and didn’t work in the past.
- What are the business drivers and key metrics to really make the project a success.
- Big Picture – What the roadmap of future work looks like outside this project and how this project aligns with that piece of work.
- A real understanding of timeline pressures faced for delivery of the work.
Understand any Technical Constraints
A great opportunity while doing requirements gathering is to work out right at the start if there is technically anything that might impact or alter the delivery of the project.
Calling these out early works to build client rapport and helps avoid potential unnecessary pressures that might resultantly build up as part of a project.
Understand who the audience and user is
Make sure you are designing the UX and building a solution for the right audience. An easy mistake to make early on is to spend countless hours building an amazing UX solution that completely misses the mark.
Avoid falling into this trap by spending the time early on to understand who the solution is for.
Experienced UX’ers spend more time during the requirements gathering phase ensuring they get the brief right.
This is the foundation of any UX project. As a builder would put it ‘measure twice, cut once’ and it certainly applies here.