User Experience as a basis for Management Decision Making Processes
Ollberg, Kalle Alexander
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The main objective of this thesis was to study the influence that user-centric design has on the management of product development processes. The goal was to identify how the success factors for project management can be adapted to the industrial context of complex systems. Furthermore, the aim was to study how the value of user experience can be delivered towards the customer surface. The main objective was approached with theoretical and empirical analysis. A literature review was conducted to distinguish the success factors in user experience related development projects. Qualitative interviews with two case companies and their customer representatives were held to bring a practical viewpoint on the studied phenomenon in a complex systems environment. As a result of the study, some implications could be drawn. Regarding the applicability of the success factors, the results indicated that a substantial amount of project management success factors can also be applied to the user experience environment within complex systems. These can be mostly understood as fundamental competitive factors for an organization. For example, involving senior management and representatives from different divisions to the development project will help creating a joint understanding of the value of the system’s aspects. The value of certain management practices was seen to differ in the research context, reflecting with the characteristics of complex systems. Concrete prototypes are seen particularly effective to make a solid understanding of the value of user experience. Instead of involving customers in all product development phases, a more effective approach in the earlier stages is to utilize a collective customer feedback method. The customers in the industrial context do not place a high value on the hedonic aspects, but rather focus on rational and service-based aspects. When aiming to make an impact with user experience, the management should expand their offering beyond the actual product towards a service based experience model. As an implication of the findings, a modified version of the project management success factors was presented to the industrial context of complex systems.