Ask An UXpert

Last month, I was approached by Sheena Lyonnais, a blogger with Adobe Creative Cloud for her column Ask An UXpert. The prompt was to answer: What Does Holistic Design Mean to You? Here is my perspective:  

Taking a Full System Approach to Understanding Customer Impact

Holistic design means the freedom to investigate a problem space and uncover points of leverage where proposed solutions can have the greatest impact on people. My work tends to live outside of the visual layer of design, to the underlying system that supports the product. I frequently see that external user pains are most often caused by internal breakdowns.

In addition to getting input from users, it is important to review the internal system of technology, mindsets, people, and process that support the experience. Are the people involved at all level of the design process set up to succeed in creating experiences that delight users? Is there alignment across the organization? What silos or barriers are resulting in decisions that negatively impact end-users?

In many cases the use of technology, structure, and processes within an organization have been established in a way that serves the system itself, not the people. My best work is when I get the opportunity to provide input to how teams can better function for their own health and the good of the users. A key benefit of a robust discovery phase is making connections that recombine existing components of the system in new ways that reduce barriers and better support great customer experiences.

Read the rest of the responses on Adobe Creative Cloud.



Karen Whistler