By Valerie Pegon, Experience designer & Innovation Strategist, Dassault Systèmes
Designers hate to stand still. They permanently reflect back on their practice, redesigning and testing, in order to improve it. Every time, when something seems sorted, another challenge emerges. Little by little, the practice gets more professional, and more specialized. But occasionally, there is a need for regrouping, for reconnecting. It is with this intention that we reflected back on design thinking and saw opportunities to make it more powerful.
Unfortunately, design thinking is often reduced to a recipe, to define user journeys that are relevant to today’s user needs. But what about tasting the dish to check how it is coming along? What about gathering the right ingredients (the diversity of people, a broader knowledge, unusual ingredients)? What about the restaurant itself and the suppliers (the organisation, the partners and the business models)? And tomorrow?
We believe Experience Thinking can take companies to another level; helping businesses in their transformation. There are indeed a few top-level challenges and opportunities it can help with.
First, agility. While it may sound obvious for digital companies, agility remains complex for other industries. However, the evolutions of technologies and science unlock new possibilities that designers can start to harness. Imagine, as a designer, being able to simulate your design right away, in real time. Or being able to test virtual experiences quickly, as if you were there, without having to develop a full serious game?
Second, the Internet of Things. Remember Gartner’s hype curve: the hype may be over today but now, the possibilities are here for you to grasp. Sensing and data analytics enable a continuous feedback loop to improve new designs, to adapt in real time. Connected objects enable services that totally change the way people use products, the business models and even the approach to designing these products and services together, as a whole.
Third, social systems. Like cities, the systems companies create are multi-player and contextually adapting to a wide range of users and stakeholders. Building these ecosystems require some level of structure (we talk about “experience architecture”) to work smoothly, a high level of flexibility and a deep connection to the context and usage.
In the end, we always come back to the experience, because that is where the value lies. But the way we think and enable the experience we dream of is changing.
Discover more about Design in the Age of Experience at our event website.
Find out about Dassault Systèmes’ Design Studio here.