This project, completed for my Interaction Design module at City University London, saw me conduct research, analyse data, create wireframes and conduct user testing to solve the problem of how to approach the design of a portable check-out device for a hardware store. Having discovered a passion for UX over the course of the module, I played a big role in helping to guide my team through the user-centred design process, and provided lots of design input that made it into the final iteration of our product.
We started with data collection, conducting observations of hardware store shoppers as well as semi-structured interviews with shoppers and staff; because we didn't know anything about hardware store shoppers' habits at this stage, this open-ended qualitative approach would provide us with the most useful information. Following this, we discussed major themes that had come up in our observations and interviews, and came up with a task analysis providing a picture of the typical hardware store shopping experience. This was followed by the creation of two detailed personas, characters who were composites of the themes we had encountered during data collection.
Once we had our two personas, we created scenarios for them to see how they would go through a typical shopping experience and what problems they would encounter. Following this, we created storyboards envisioning how our personas could use a handheld checkout device to improve their shopping experience. We then came up with a set of requirements to inform our design as we entered the conceptual design phase, brainstormed until we had our conceptual design, and then finally sketched out our ideas for detailed interface design and came up with a paper prototype. (I created the screens for this in OmniGraffle.)
For user testing, we created a basic scenario, and then had a user perform a thinkaloud while attempting the scenario. A few common problems with our design were discovered, and we tweaked our interface to address them. If there had been time for further user testing and iterations we could have refined the (theoretical) device further, but I think we did a good job of incorporating good usability principles and a number of useful features considering the time limit.