for user-centred design
Planning and management must initiate and support the user centred
activities in the project.
The following principles may help the project manager to enforce
UCD during the project development.
- Facilitate interdisciplinary work: UCD is an interdisciplinary
approach. Various disciplines are involved: designers, psychologists,
ergonomics specialists, technicians, economists, etc. These groups
should be integrated, dependent on domain-specific needs.
- Involve all relevant team members: A practical guideline
for a project manager would be to initiate a stakeholder meeting
at the beginning of the project and to repeat these meetings regularly
- Conduct a cost-benefit analysis or consult already
existing cost-benefit studies of projects with comparable conditions.
The demonstration of evidence concerning the high cost-effectiveness
of UCD will facilitate its argumentation. Furthermore, the methodology
can be adapted to financial constraints.
- Manage the design iterations: Another challenge for
a UCD-oriented project manager is to manage the design iterations.
The iterative nature of UCD is a precondition to ensure that the
final product is really oriented to the users’ needs. In
order to achieve this iterative procedure, an explicit plan containing
the schedule for the design and evaluation steps should be produced.
This plan should be regarded as a working document that is to
some extent flexible to changes of conditions and constraints.