The foundation for a successful project starts with an extensive planning phase, where crucial design elements are laid out and identified with strategic drawings. Alongside client partners, CPL approaches this process through visioning sessions to outline project needs and design preferences, followed by a series of user group meetings to acquire deep knowledge about an organization.
The most effective user group meetings often include key project stakeholders, client staff and a range of potential end users who come together to share their personal input. The insight gained from well-orchestrated user groups allows us to bring clients the following key benefits.
- DESIGN CONSIDERATIONS FROM A FULL BREADTH OF USER PARTICIPANTS
To fully understand a project’s design requirements, we must first understand the clientele and direct users of the targeted space. This effort varies significantly depending on the market.For instance, healthcare users include everyone from executives, doctors, nurses, patients and family support; whereas education users involve administrators, educators, students and members of the community. Different users warrant different design decisions.The more users who attend organized user group meetings, the better our team can interpret the daily problems faced from multiple angles, and level up effective solutions to tackle them all.
- INVESTED DESIGNER-CLIENT RELATIONSHIPS
User group meetings are rooted in establishing an open and honest work relationship between our team and the client. During these meetings, we aim to create a relaxed and inviting atmosphere that encourages the free flow of easy, casual discussions from all participants. As our team prompts users to offer their valuable insight, we actively listen to ensure feedback is heard and accounted for.
- INTEGRATION OF BRAND IDENTITY
An organization curates its brand identity with various methodologies, including personal user experiences, word of mouth, social media and marketing, among others. However, these outward perceptions present limitations in terms of giving us a thorough understanding of a client’s mission and core values. This barrier is broken during user group meetings.
- SPARKED CREATIVITY
After several meetings, our team possess a full scope of an organization’s specific needs and desires, as well as an innate understanding of end user preferences. This knowledge propels the most creative design concepts.The more we collaborate as a fully vested team, the easier it is to create impactful design solutions that not only incorporate guided input, but also strengthen the relationship between us and the client.To fully perceive a brand through design, we need to have meaningful conversations about a client’s principles and identify the lasting impact they want to have on their people and communities. User groups illuminate these discussions, allowing our team to authentically integrate a client’s brand identity into final designs.
Engaging in user group conversations over formal presentations ultimately helps us become fully immersed in our projects. These open discussions enable personal, ingenious ideas to be pitched, heard and further developed. Collectively, the creative ideas we share together are always the most powerful solutions to consider.
The firsthand feedback we receive from our clients and their end users is what sets the stage for a successful project. As part of our collaborative planning process, CPL rallies behind user group meetings because we have borne witness to the exceptional design solutions that inevitably emerge from them.