VDI Seminar – Human-Centered Design als Perspektive für das Variantenmanagement


Im Rahmen des VDI Seminars »Kundenindividuelle Lösungen realisierenund trotzdem profitabel bleiben« am 4.12. in Stuttgart werde ich über die Human-Centered Design als Methode des Variantemanagements sprechen.


– Angebote und Aufträge effizient abwickeln – auch bei zahlreichen Varianten

– Standardisierung und / oder Individualisierung

– Varianten reduzieren – gestalten – beherrschen: die Vorgehensweise

– Varianten reduzieren durch koordinierte Standardisierung

– Varianten gestalten durch Plattformbildung und Modularisierung

– Varianten beherrschen durch systematische Einbindung in den Produktentstehungsprozess

– Variantenmanagement-Leitfaden

Das Seminar wird organisiert und geleitet von Prof. Dr.-Ing. Günther Würtz vom Steinbeis-Transferzentrum Management
– Innovation – Technologie, Stuttgart.

Link zum Programm und zur Anmeldung.

Alan Cooper On The Much-Rumored Death Of The Design Firm


Source: fastcodesign, http://www.fastcodesign.com/3051871/a-ux-legend-on-the-much-rumored-death-of-the-design-firm

Alan Cooper is a pioneer in the software world: In the 1970’s, he created seminal business software for microcomputers. Then, in 1988, he invented Visual Basic, one of the world’s most influential programming languages. In 1992, he cofounded Cooper, an interaction-design consulting firm that invented design methods commonplace today, such as personas. Cooper is also the author of About Face: The Essentials of Interaction Design, now in it’s fourth edition

Today, there are dozens of examples of hugely successful, design-driven companies. The message is getting through: User experience design makes you more successful. And so it’s understandable that company men nudge each other and grunt, „We need some of that design stuff!“ They hire independent firms. They gain value from a novel perspective. Then, after a while, these same business people ask themselves if they might not save money by bringing some designers in-house. Wouldn’t it be more efficient, they ask, if these designers worked for us instead of for some outside firm?

The answer, of course, is that it would be more efficient. But that simple answer hides the more significant question: Is more efficiency what you need? Is efficiency going to help you succeed? The companies buying design firms may ultimately find that they didn’t get the benefit they imagined. Bringing a troupe of independent practitioners in-house likely will not dull their practice, but it certainly ends their independence, and it is precisely that independence that allows us to work our magic.

Contrary to popular belief, I’ve found that clients typically don’t lack in invention. But they do lack perspective. Take one famous example: In 1973, working for Kodak, Steven Sasson invented the digital camera. Yet the photography giant refused to develop the product because it threatened their core business of making film. That was a reasonable assessment, but it was also one that placed Kodak’s own interests ahead of its users‘, thus assuring its long-term demise.

Companies still need the help of an outsider to show them how their deep familiarity with the problem is confounding their ability to see it clearly. They often wrestle with such cognitive illusions as confirmation bias, where they only see evidence that confirms their thinking, or loss aversion, where people are more willing to take risks to prevent a loss than to take risks to obtain a gain.

That’s where designers come in. They occupy the (understandably unpopular) position of prioritizing the users’ needs and behaviors over the ingrained views and risk-averse assumptions of the enterprise. But that wasn’t always such an obvious idea. Twenty-five years ago, our firm and others were inventing the very idea of user experience in real time. We soon realized that to design mere screens, we had to understand users in a way that was also central to the entire corporation.

And yet corporate behemoths still confuse what designers make with what designers do. Twenty-five years ago, we realized that wireframes and prototypes were actually far down the line, in value. The hard problem wasn’t figuring out how screens should behave. The hard problem was figuring out what problem is worth solving—then making sure everyone is on the same page. Put another way, if you have hundreds or even thousands of employees, the only way to get them to work together coherently is a single, unifying vision. That’s exactly what interaction designers do. Today, user experience designers, gifted with an impartial perspective, can readily provide critical strategic insights in every stage of the product development process.

If you gain efficiency while losing the outside perspective, you gain nothing. If you save money while suppressing the motivation to tell unpleasant truths inside your company, what have you gained? Saving money on designers isn’t a good deal if you subject those designers to the same cultural forces that prevent your other practitioners from thinking outside the corporate box.

I’m not predicting doom and annihilation for those UX consulting companies that get acquired by banks and engineering firms. They will do just fine, and probably do some very high-quality design work that they—and their purchasers—can be proud of. There is plenty of design work that needs to be done. That’s the thing: The entire relentless onslaught of digital technology needs to be shaped and designed to serve the needs of its users rather than the needs of its creators. The salient characteristic of design in the 21st century is that we need one whole hell of a lot of it. We need designers on the inside, designers on the outside, designers at inception, designers during development, and designers after release three-point-oh. But for a large, and growing, cohort of businesses, the independence of the external design consultancy is exactly what they need to see their future clearly and march purposely toward it.

The lever to move a company must be long and its fulcrum must be external to the organization. This is the role of the independent design firm, which is needed now more than ever. Our independence is the particular characteristic that our clients most want from us (whether they know it or not). Our future is rock solid. As the founder and owner of such an independent firm, I am putting my money where my mouth is. I’m expanding our company.

SxSW: John Maeda on Design & Tech Business

»Design has become a game changer in Silicon Valley. This DesignInTech Report highlights the rising importance of design in the entrepreneurial ecosystem. The report covers trends ranging from the record amounts of funding flowing into design-led startups to M&A activity with major tech corporations. Beyond designers and technologists, this report will appeal to a broad audience. For all of us who use a computer or mobile device, great design is changing how we live and work. This study helps explain why.«

Designers should persuade clients with numbers not aesthetics, says new report

A tool that lets businesses measure and predict the financial outcomes of investing in design is being developed by a research team in Finland, whose project leader says designers should talk numbers rather than aesthetics to appeal to prospective clients.

The Design ROI tool is a collaboration between 15 Finnish design agencies and a team of academics at Aalto University in Helsinki, which was established in 2010 in the merger of the Helsinki University of Technology, the University of Art and Design Helsinki and Helsinki School of Economics.

“What we’ve set out to do is to create a methodology and metrics to measure the economic impact of design,” project leader Antti Pitkänen told Dezeen. The team analysed more than 40 internationally published academic papers to find out what design strategies businesses are investing in, whether they are benefiting from that investment and how to quantify those benefits.

The researchers also identified four areas of design in which businesses might invest: products; brands; spaces, such as offices and shops; and services, which covers how well a business responds to customers’ needs.

The first prototype of the tool is a complex spreadsheet that calculates the multiple variables affecting the return on investment (ROI) that design can deliver.

“We haven’t created a holy grail, but we’ve really tried to understand the problematics behind design ROI as well as creating some kind of understanding of the ‘ballpark’ return on the investment,” Pitkänen told Dezeen. “So if I invest £100,000, do I get £100,000 back or do I get twice that, or ten times that?”

Although it’s impossible to predict the exact return on an investment, said Pitkänen, the Design ROI tool can indicate a positive or negative result and suggest approximate figures. So while good design brings benefits that can’t be measured, designers should be thinking more about the bottom line if they want to bring clients onside, he continued.

“Design can be approached in a number of different ways. We can look at it on a qualitative basis – something is better than something else, or more beautiful. This is something that designers and design agencies are very efficient in talking about.

“But we also looked at financial measures and other quantitative measures, like the number of visits to a webpage. And with the financial measures, we’re looking at how design influences more money coming into the company, or less money going out.

“We looked at all the benefits that design has, but we focused on the link between design and what effect it has on the bottom line. And not only is it beneficial, but it’s possible to measure it.”

He suggested that designers could attract more clients by avoiding subjective language about the look and feel of a design in favour of talking about the clear financial benefits of investing in design.

“The core of the problem is that design agencies talk to people through references, and what’s very important is talking about the numbers as well,” Pitkänen said. “Once you are able to create metrics and create objectives for projects, then we start creating a better understanding of what the final outcome is. That will also increase the appreciation on the client side of why they’re using design and when design should be used.

“So it’s very much a communication tool, making the client understand how and when to use design, not only ‘I like it’ or ‘I don’t like it’.”

The prototype tool marks the end of the first phase of the Design ROI project. For the next phase, the researchers hope to collaborate with businesses and designers to fine-tune the tool and develop it for wider use.

The full report is available to read and download online, although it is only available in Finnish.

[ http://www.dezeen.com/2012/10/25/roi-of-investing-in-design/ ]



OTRS hat (nach einer längeren Alpha-Phase) jetzt Mitte November die von uns konzipierte und gestaltete Help-Desk Applikation mit neuen Funktionen und neuem Interface als stabiles Release veröffentlicht. Was uns besonders freut: der überarbeiteten Version wird von der OTRS AG Benutzerfreundlichkeit und eine deutliche Effizienzsteigerung bescheinigt – Tickets  sollen durch das Informationsdesign um 30% schneller bearbeitet werden.

Pressemitteilung der OTRS AG vom 15.11.2010

»OTRS Help Desk 3.0 mit vollkommen neuer Benutzeroberfläche jetzt als stabiles Release – Um 30 Prozent beschleunigte Ticket-Bearbeitung durch neues Informationsdesign (…)«


IT SecCity, 17.11.2010
»OTRS Help Desk 3.0″ mit neuer Benutzeroberfläche jetzt als stabiles Release (…)«

Golem.de, 16.11.2010
»Neue Benutzeroberfläche für OTRS 3.0.1 – Die OTRS-Entwickler haben ihrer quelloffenen Helpdesk-Software in der Version 3 eine neue Benutzeroberfläche verpasst: Über Ajax, XHTML und CSS kann die Oberfläche dynamisch angepasst werden. Eine optimierte Suchfunktion soll komplexe Suchkriterien erlauben. (…)«

Chip-Online, 15.11.2010
»OTRS Help Desk 3.0: Stabiles Release verfügbar – Der Open-Source-Softwarehersteller OTRS hat die neue Version der Helpdesk-Software OTRS Help Desk 3.0 verfügbar gemacht. Das stabile Release hat laut dem Distributor ein neues Design und eine einheitliche Nutzerführung, die die tägliche Arbeit des unterstützenden IT-Personals erleichtern soll. (…)«

Heise Online, 15.11.2010
»Helpdesk OTRS in Version 3.0 – Die OTRS AG hat die Version 3.0 der unter AGPL vertriebenen Helpdesk-Lösung OTRS veröffentlicht. Wesentliche Neuerung ist die neu konzipierte grafische Bedienoberfläche, die laut dem Unternehmen auf der Grundlage umfassender Usability-Studien in realen Anwendungskontexten sowie von Interviews mit Anwendern konzipiert wurde. (…)« 

Computerwoche, 15.11.2010
»OTRS Help Desk in neuer Version 3.0 – Die quelloffene Help-Desk-Lösung von OTRS liegt in der neuen stabilen Version 3.0 vor. Mit ihrer vollkommen neuen Benutzerführung sollen sich Tickets bis zu 30 Prozent schneller bearbeiten lassen. (…)«


… a quote from the back cover of the 1974 final issue of „The Whole Earth Catalog“ is how Steve Jobs conludes his Stanford Commencement Speech in 2005 and how the documentary on Steve Jobs of the new Bloomberg Game Changers Series does as well. Above a short introduction on YouTube.

The whole length documentary you will find on the Bloomberg site:

I have enjoyed watching it.

Follow up links
Bloomberg Game Changers
The Whole Earth Catalog
Steve Jobs Stanford Commencement Speech from 2005


Oracle hat mit »IT 2020: Technology Optimism: An Oracle Scenario« ein lesenswertes White Paper veröffentllicht, in dem die MItarbeiter in kurzen Essays ihre durchaus subjektiven Ideen, Konzepte und Perspektiven für die IT im Jahre 2020 skizzieren…


(OTRS published today a press release announcing the 3.0 Beta…)

OTRS Launches 3.0 Beta with All-New GUI

New Ajax-powered open source Help Desk delivers quick-response user experience

Cupertino, CA – August 2, 2010 – OTRS (www.otrs.com), the world’s leading provider of open source Help Desk and ITIL-compatible IT Service Management (ITSM) solutions, today launched the 3.0 beta of its help desk system, featuring a brand new Ajax-powered interface designed to dispatch help tickets 30 percent faster, under the most demanding usage scenarios.

„With the power of our help desk growing by leaps and bounds, we needed to come up with a creative new way to deliver that power to the user, especially in demanding, high usage situations,“ said Manuel Hecht, Director of Research and Development. „The solution was to create a brand new user-centered design employing the latest Ajax, xHTML, CSS, and other technologies. In designing our new help desk, we brought the user?s experiences and workflows front and center to drive our programming, rather than the other way around. The result is up to 30 percent quicker ticket turnaround under demanding high-usage scenarios, on top of enhanced features and accessibility.“

New Features in Help Desk 3.0
The all-new user-centered design features an enhanced New Ticket dashboard, a dynamic Ticket Zoom view, enhanced search, an interactive Global Ticket overview, ticket archiving,and accessibility compliance. For download, please go to otrs.org/download/. OTRS worked with a specialized design agency to enhance and improve the user experience of the 3.0 product. The firm, ma ma interactive system design, is continuing to collaborate with OTRS to enhance style and usability of the OTRS open-source service innovation suite.

Read the Release Note