Design Thinking: What is it & Why is it Important?

Jun 17, 2020

Whether you are designing a new product, never before created, or redesigning an existing product for improved functionality, design thinking can help you create a product that better serves your end-users.

What is Design Thinking

Design thinking is a human-centered process for creative problem-solving. This means the problem-solvers are focused on the people for whom they are solving the problem instead of focusing on the problem itself.

Through this process, designers gain a deeper understanding of the user and their needs. This will allow the designer to challenge their original assumptions and create a product that more fully satisfies their end-user and their needs.

Design Thinking Phases

There are five phases to the design thinking process:

  • Empathize: Getting to know your customers through empathy is key to creating a successful product. Don’t assume you know what your end-users are thinking or feeling. Conduct user research to gain an empathetic understanding of their needs and wants.

  • Define: Based on the research you collected and the insight you gained, you will define the user’s problem and their needs. Oftentimes your initial assumption of the problem is different than what the actual problem is.

  • Ideate: Ideating is all about thinking outside of the box. Look at the problem from different angles to come up with innovative solutions. You want to generate as many ideas as possible, no matter how crazy or far-out they may seem.

  • Prototype: Once you have a variety of innovative solutions, start to identify which one best solves the problem you discovered in the previous stages. Choose a few of the solutions and create inexpensive prototypes to get a better understanding of how they would work.

  • Test: After identifying the best solution from the prototype phase, designers will test their solution multiple times to evaluate its effectiveness.

This is an iterative process meaning it doesn’t have to end once you have completed the testing phase. You can go back to previous stages if need be, to make further improvements.

Why is Design Thinking Important

The design thinking process is important because it helps you design and manufacture a product that is not only desirable from a customer point of view but also logically viable and economically feasible. You can have more confidence that your product will be successful when released to the market.

With design thinking, your product will better serve the needs or your end-user making it more useful and successful. Because the design thinking process is so thorough, there is also less risk involved with launching your product to the public. Lastly, the design thinking process helps you create revolutionary solutions rather than solutions that are simply “good enough.”

Designing and Manufacturing in Logan, Utah

Freeform Polymers in Logan, Utah can help with any production project from start to finish. We specialize in injection molding to deliver a polished and efficient product on time and on budget. We take care of everything from the initial 3D design and prototype to assembling and shipping the finished product. Our skilled designers and machinists can take any design you can think of and turn it into a durable steel mold capable of large or small batch production.

Whether you have an idea in mind or a fully formed design ready to be manufactured, contact Freeform Polymers today to get started!