The Double Diamond Model is a simple way of mapping the design process. Divided into four distinct phases, Discover, Define, Develop and Deliver, it marks out the divergent and convergent stages of the design process. These stages are made up of numerous activities or tools which can be used depending on the desired outcome. This process allows you to take virtually any idea from concept to outcome in organised and thorough fashion.
Below is an explanation of the different stages in the double diamond process and an example of a tool that can be used to gather the relevant information and achieve the required outcome.
The start of a project is marked by an initial idea or inspiration, often sourced from the Discover phase. The initial idea can be generated in a number of ways. This can involve looking into Market Research, User Research, Design Research, Technology Research, Interviews & Insights Gathering, Observation & shadowing, Empathic Modelling and Information Management. This stage is where ideas are broad in order to come up with a diverse base of knowledge for inspiration. The reason this stage is called discover is that throughout the whole process discoveries have to be made.
Mindmapping and Brainstorming are two very useful tools during the discover stage. Mindmapping helps you learn more effectively and productively. They also allow you to review information quickly and efficienty. Brainstorming allows you to generate creative solutions to a problem in a relaxed and informal manner. It allows you to bring a diverse range of skills from within a team together to produce an effective problem solving session.
The definition stage is about interpretation and alignment of findings to project objectives. The key areas of this are project development, management and outcome. Information analysis and refinement allows the keys parts of this project to be defined. Discoveries form the discover stage are refined and analysed through defining so that they can be taken to the development stage. The define and discover stages of the double diamond are the most vital as they are the generation and cultivation of ideas, without these stages being successful the overall design will not be effective and worthwhile.
Six hats is a method which can play an important role in the defining stage. It allows a decision to be looked at from a number of perspectives. This method encourages you to try different thinking styles and provide a more rounded view on a situation. The idea of the tool is to encourage you to try on different hats, each of which represents a different style of thinking.
The development stage requires a multi disciplinary workforce to address the problems or issues defined during the discover and define stages. It is the teams duty to eradicate any underlying problems and progress with the development of the design in the form of testing and prototyping to review and improve.
SCAMPER is a really easy tool to use within development. It is a technique which can encourage creativity and overcome challenges. SCAMPER is a mnemonic that is based on the notion that everyhting new is a modification of something that already exists. It stands for Substitute, Combine, Adapt, Modify, Put to another use, Eliminate and Reverse.
This is the final stage of the process where the final concept is taken through the last stages of testing, production and approval. This stage will also highlight alterations in the design process to inform and benefit future projects. The feedback and information will allow a more successful and positive outcome in the future.
User Journeys are important because they allow an experience to be delivered effectively and efficiently. A user will partake in a journey through any process they go through, it is their experience from the beginning of the first interaction with a company to the after care provided. This journey is usually taken to reach a specific goal. The aim of a company is to make the user journey as memorable as possible.