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What is Human-Centered Design and Why Does Your SaaS Product Need It?

Nov 20, 2023

Human-Centered Design (HCD) is now at the heart of exceptional software and application development. This approach focuses on putting the users at the center, emphasizing empathy, iteration, and collaboration of user feedback. HCD consists of four phases as discovery, ideation, testing, and implementation, which we will discuss in detail. The practical applications of HCD include but are not limited to co-design, user needs, and service design. HCD ensures greater efficiency, cost reduction, user satisfaction, faster to market, and improved sales and profits. You can see many real-world examples of HCD in Google Maps, iPhone, and Amazon Echo etc. Overall, businesses can now make products which can resonate with their users and result in lasting success and loyalty.

What is Human-Centered Design and Why Does Your SaaS Product Need It?

Technology is getting more and more user friendly, and there is one such place where tech fuses with human emotions, which is the HCD universe. Human-Centered Design can also turn SaaS into a truly great avenue. Human-centric thinking goes far beyond the generic design philosophy, which is a way of life where users are placed at the heart of every decision regarding the production process. As of late, there are two topics that we need to consider regarding the implementation of software in a business environment as empathy and user-centricity.

“Empathy and user-centricity are at the heart of HCD, helping to turn a functional product into something really great.” Do you have it in you to unveil the secrets of HCD? Let take the Decoding Human-centered Design tour together.

Understanding Human-Centered Design

Human-centered design principles are comparatively new, which is a user-driven way of handling problems and making products. Basically, HCD if focused on people’s needs, wants, and actions form the very basis of the entire design endeavor. The HCD is different from conventional design approaches that give priority to aesthetics, technology, or the user’s viewpoint or experience. HCD is capable of coming up with a customized product, service, and experience that perfectly match its users’ needs. In this manner, they place users as the center point in designing where every element of the end product or service aligns with what the client needs and wants as it should be.

Why Does Human-centered Design Matter?

Although HCD was born from the early user-centered design methods, it now largely surpasses simple usability. It involves consideration of the emotional requirements of the users to make them feel attached to the product/service. It goes beyond creating usable products and designing solutions with which people fall in love to the point of finding it useful in their daily life.

Also read: A Customer-Centric Approach to Building Tech Solution

Critical elements of a User defined designed Saas product

Empathy in HCD

Empathy is the basic element that forms the basis of HCD. This means assuming the role of “walking in their shoes” to comprehend what a user wants or expects. For instance, several methods of research used in reaching empathy are interviews, surveys, and user observations among others. Therefore, it is vital to understand the needs users have and develop for those purposes.

Power of Collaboration

Another critical element of HCD is collaboration. Brainstorming and teamwork are key in producing various ideas and views. By having a team that is made up of different skills, they will be able to look at all opportunities in the spectrum creating a better approach with innovation and improved effects.

Iteration and Continuous Improvement

One of the most critical aspects of HCD is iteration. This is an iterative process of trying out different alternatives and then tuning them based on user inputs. The essence of HCD is keeping the user’s considerations and frequently verifying as well as improving the layout.

Importance of user feedback

HCD relies on user feedback as its compass. It is important for users’ expectations to be incorporated into the product design by obtaining more user feedback as the journey progresses. To obtain such insights, we use methods like user testing, focus groups, survey interviewing, amongst others.

Also read: Benefits of Personalization

Phases of Human Centered Design

HCD can be primarily divided into four phases as:

  1. Discovery: This stage entails extensive studies to fully grasp what purpose you want to serve. This includes talking to prospective users, watching them as they normally do things and considering previous research on the issue in hand. This step helps formulate efficient remedies.
  1. Ideation: During this phase, designers create large numbers of possible alternative solutions. Brainstorming is conducted in groups or alone using strategies such as sketching and prototyping to explore various ideas.
  1. Testing: Then designers try out their solutions on potential users. This phase requires them to gather feedback and make changes in their design by taking into consideration what they have learned.
  1. Implementation: Lastly, designers collaborate with developers to create the final solution. They develop a roadmap on how the solution will be implemented for use by people.

Example of human-centered designs

A few real-time human-centered design case study examples are;

  • Google Maps: It is another perfect illustration of a successful HCD by providing step-by-step directions to the users through an easy-to-use interface. 
  • iPhone: Apple designed the iPhone to be as user-friendly and intuitive as possible. You can see that the features of iPhone are built to align with even the minute of the user needs which is why it won hearts of millions.
  • Amazon Echo: This smart speaker makes it easier for the users to control their smart devices, get information, and make entertainment hands-free. This Amazon product is meant to ease the daily lives of users.

Also read: Transparency in Tech Solutions: How Sarvadhi Builds Trust with Clients

Human-centered Features and Design in Action

Why do we need user-centered design in Saas products? HCD goes beyond being a design philosophy which has many tangible and wide-ranging benefits to the bottom-line. Here are some of the key advantages of HCD in action.

  1. Increased Efficiency - HCD improves the ease of use in the software development process. It helps improve efficiency in providing an end product that efficiently meets user requirements and enables organizations to have a shorter period for development and market penetration.
  1. Increased User Satisfaction – The product will only be satisfactory and easy to use if the software development project is crafted around the needs of the user. It helps to boost customer satisfaction and loyalty that further improves the result of your business.
  1. Reduced Development Costs - Development costs can be reduced with HCD mechanisms. At the first point, it makes the designs user friendly without having to spend a fortune on revisions and adjustments. It also facilitates proper project planning and prevents error and problems that may arise while making the product.
  1. Increased Speed to Market - HCD expedites SaaS development process by reducing time to market for new products and new features. This is a significant advantage which businesses can capitalize on to capture new opportunities faster, outpacing competitors.

We can say that Human-Centered Design (HCD) is a simple and mighty approach focused on the desires, needs, and behaviors of the users. HCD strives to build products which people find value in and fall in love with. In building a user defined designed Saas product, HCD focuses on making the software management tasks simpler and easier to administer. HCD principles revolve around empathy, collaboration, iteration, and user feedback, and ensure that the final product is in tune with the user's expectations.

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Owing to team Sarvadhi’s knowledge and expertise, we built a high performing e-commerce website that perfectly represents our brand values and resonates easily with our audience. Without hesitation, we wholeheartedly recommend Sarvadhi to businesses in need of a reliable web development experience.

Akshar Moradiya
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