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A Guide to Creating Meaningful User Experiences

6/17/19 1:10 PM

Have you ever used a product or service and thought, "What a horrible user experience!" Most of us have, and there is momentum in today's online and digital worlds to fix this problem for all types of products and services. It's all about creating a simpler, yet trustworthy experience for the user. 

User Experience Design (UX Design) is a process centered around creating products or services that will provide relevant and meaningful experiences to users. User centered design puts you in the users' shoes, thinking about the emotional connection that a user will have with your product or service. Often times people confuse usability with user experience. Though they are closely related, usability is a part of the overall user experience. 

At Kingland we approach UX Design in our solutions on a daily basis. Through education and client feedback we create solutions that improve the user experience by taking an active approach to address not only the usability of our solutions but the overall user experience. A perfect example of this is our Kingland Platform. By choosing technologies such as responsive web design, our solutions give users an optimal viewing experience across platforms and devices. Making sure the content and layout of our solutions efficiently and effectively adapt to the sizes and technical abilities of the devices it is opened on increases usability. This is important in today's fast paced society where people are consuming information and data through a variety of devices and platforms. 

Let's walk through a real-world experience below.

KINGLAND UX DESIGN EXAMPLE

One of the challenges we face at Kingland is to help clients consume heavy, data-intensive information in an easy-to-read and understandable way. Taking examples from some of the top design firms in the world, we approached Kingland's Platform Dashboard with similar principles in mind during the design and implementation phases. As you can see from the screenshot below, we allow configurable widgets that contain all types of data and metadata. Additionally, clients can configure their dashboards in multiple sizes and positions while keeping them in the bounds of the template. This gives clients the ability to customize their dashboards and keep them in the same structure of usability and consistency between users.

Dashboard

I always enjoy sharing client feedback on our user interface and user experience within our Kingland Platform. On a recent trip to demo the Platform to a client, we received feedback from a UI/UX firm that handles work for major corporations. Their assessment: "Dope!" In other words, they thought our work was great, awesome, amazing. Hearing validation from a company that specializes in this area confirmed that we are headed in the right direction. Much like the example above, we believe in designing solutions in the ways that our clients work. 

User Design Inspiration

When creating UI screens, I look for inspiration from the best companies in the tech industry. One of my hobbies is flying drones to capture aerial media, and some of the inspiration and design ideas are influenced by the company that is the leader in drone technology, DJI. I have used many different drone applications to track my flights and missions but the DJI app has far exceeded all the competition. They found a way to include all types of metadata in real-time much like our Kingland Platform dashboard does. There are menus and drop downs that allow the users to consume the most important information but also dive deeper into sub menus that provide more context and specific information related to the drone flight. This inspiration can be applied to many areas of usability and user experience. 

DJI Edit

Overall there are many things to think about when it comes to creating a meaningful user experience - especially in the enterprise software space. Is it easy to understand how to use the solution? Does it allow me to do my work efficiently and effectively? If I have questions, where can I go to get answers quickly? Does it provide my company and my job value by using this solution? These are just a few of the questions we ask ourselves when creating and designing solutions for our clients. Following successful patterns in implementing user interfaces and user experiences will help ensure the solutions we create are ones that are used by our clients for a long time! 

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