Are You Using Design to Drive Innovation for Your Company?

For organizations that need to invest in technology, can design be seen and applied as more than icing on the cake?

For forward-thinking companies with a mindset for success, the answer is “Yes.”

As a practice, design can be the catalyst for building a cohesive strategy to stay differentiated within an industry or customer segment. It can significantly drive innovation through resources such as journey maps, personas, user experience, prototypes and more.

Many organizations have a romantic notion of the lone innovator. While that does occasionally happen, the #1 reason startups fail is ‘no market needed’ — meaning they didn’t understand their potential customers, and how to serve them.

At this week’s Waypoint 2019 Conference, projekt202 VP of Customer Experience Jeremy Johnson will provide more insights into design’s often hidden or overlooked superpowers.

Jeremy’s presentation on Feb. 20 is titled “Using Design to Drive Innovation in Technology.” During his talk, Jeremy will walk attendees through a pragmatic look into best practices and ways to use design within their organizations to build cohesive strategies, focusing on staying differentiated in their industries with innovative solutions.

“I believe that real innovation comes from deeply understanding customers, and then applying that knowledge to solving their challenges using design methods,” said Jeremy.

As an example, he cited a ride-sharing service for its innovative approach to a common set of user experience issues.

“If you had observed people using taxis, the list of pain points would be a mile long. That information — together with funding and the right technology, of course — would lead to something more user-friendly that we see in the ride-sharing arena today,” he said.

projekt202 VP of CX Jeremy Johnson

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“Also in that case, any businessperson could be identified as a user. Maybe not all the users, but they have a list of their own grievances they want to see improved,” Jeremy explained. “But how about creating solutions for segments that are unfamiliar to you, such as pilots, accountants or car salespeople? Or someone working hourly vs. a corporate job? The key point is, you need to understand people and their world before getting the solution right.”

To move from idea to reality, innovation requires the foundational support that comes from truly understanding customers’ needs, wants and motivations.

“Many organizations have a romantic notion of the lone innovator. While that does occasionally happen, the #1 reason startups fail is ‘no market needed’ — meaning they didn’t understand their potential customers and how to serve them,” Jeremy said. “Innovation needs to solve real problems, for real customers, or the #2 reason for failure — ‘ran out of cash’ — will inevitably happen.”

Simply testing out new technologies for the sake of something new isn’t genuine innovation. In a sense, it’s the 21st century version of putting the cart before the horse — a solution that doesn’t solve the real need or issue.

“If anything, you should be looking for insights and opportunities to serve your customers, and then work towards that,” Jeremy said.

He mentioned a report by Forrester Research that claims 89% of companies expect to compete mostly on the basis of customer experience.

“We’ve seen data that show companies that provide improved CX have better loyalty and higher revenue, so the differentiator is understanding your customers and delivering them an improved experience,” Jeremy added. “Design methods can get you there, which is why projekt202 has developed a methodology for innovation and experience-driven transformation, one that we’ve been perfecting over the past 15 years.”


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Jeremy will outline these insights and more on Wednesday at the three-day conference. Waypoint 2019 brings together thought leaders, customer specialists, industry experts and aviation practitioners to focus on key topics, areas of interest and challenges in the aviation industry. The event features several rounds of informational sessions.

Waypoint is GE Aviation Digital’s premier aviation industry user conference, focused on thought leadership, flight safety, strategy, and best practice sharing for professionals across the globe.

Building on past Digital Solution’s Symposium conferences, Waypoint 2019 will showcase the productivity impact of digital, highlight real software solutions available today, and feature provocative advice from software and industry thought leaders on best practices, use cases and how to deliver efficiency and long-term, sustainable growth that will build asset lifecycle productivity.

The 2019 event takes place Feb. 19 — 21 at the Omni Dallas Hotel. Admission is free, but attendees must register in advance.

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projekt202 is the leader in experience-driven software strategy, design and development. We have a unique and established methodology for understanding people in context — we reveal unmet needs — which drives everything we do. This leads to a crisp, clear understanding of the customer, which shapes the design and development of new solutions and experiences. We have the expertise, teams, skills and scale to deliver sophisticated software solutions that improve any and all touchpoints across the user journey.

projekt202 has spent over 15 years bringing to life and to market compelling experiences through our Experience Strategy & Insight, User Experience, Software Development, Marketing & Analytics, and Program Management practices. Our talented team has delivered emotionally-rich and intuitive solutions for global brands and clients such as 7-Eleven, Capital One, Dell, Mercedes-Benz Financial Services, Neiman Marcus, Samsung Electronics and The Container Store, among many others.


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