Digital Transformation

5 Tips to Create Effective UX Wireframes

Wireframing, sometimes referred to as UI design or user experience design, is a critical part of the overall design process. App and website wireframes can range from being as simple as a hand-drawn sketch with pen and paper, to being a complex as a detailed blueprint. Wireframes are usually the first tangible thing our clients (and developers) see which visually represent the product or idea. Most people I’ve worked with on projects historically tend to view wireframes as a design document, but I’ve always thought of them as a technical document. Why is this? Because even though the wireframes are a visual expression of the site, they tend to become the foundation for everything that follows.

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5 Tips for Improving Your User Experience Design

The bulk of the world’s population spends quite a lot of time online each day. We use apps and websites. We watch videos and listen to podcasts. We read stories and news. Sometimes (more often than not) we use smartphones to get our fix. Other times, the Mac or PC at home. There are tons of great apps, games, and websites out there that put a lot of effort into their user experience design – which can range from the definition of their brand or visual design of their website, to the way their app works, or even the specific experience someone has interacting something (submitting a support request, for example).

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A Guide to Customer Journey Maps: PART 1

Connecting with your customers effectively isn’t usually as simple as defining just one way for them to interact with your business – or getting someone to visit your website or download your app. An authentic experience is one where your customer interacts in harmony with your brand. And in an age where every device has a data connection, it’s more important than ever to create a lasting connection with customers – by recognizing them and speaking to them in a way that not only meaningful to them, but in a way that leaves a lasting meaningful impression of the interaction with your brand.

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Leveraging Your Target Audience to Define User Personas

You might think that building a business around a great product or service idea is enough to be successful. For some (the exceptions), that might even be true. In real life, building a successful business generally takes a lot of hard work. You’ll need to define and build the product. You’ll need to design and build a website (most likely). You’ll need content that convinces people your product is worth purchasing. And you’ll need to market the product. Anyone worth their salt can tell you: no matter how great your product is, if it isn’t marketed correctly, and to the right audience, it’s never going to live up to its potential. It may not even get off the ground. Don’t worry, there’s good news. That’s exactly what user personas are for, and why their use is so widespread.

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Server vs. Serverless: A Performance Test

If you follow trends in the software development world, you know that serverless architecture is becoming quite popular. Before diving into this new technology, however, it is wise to consider whether there will be anything gained by abandoning a traditional server. Is it worth using a serverless platform for your API gateway, or is it just a fad that will soon pass?

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Preparing for Product Launch

The easiest part of launching a product is building the product. It doesn’t matter if it is software, hardware, a brand of potato chips or a new snowboard, this is the fun stage. You have an idea, it is (obviously) brilliant, you are passionate about it, you know it is going to be successful. Turning your dream into a tangible product is fun, fulfilling, and the challenges are ones that are able to be overcome because you (by and large) have control of what you are building.

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The Importance of Sprint Planning

There are sometimes challenges around explaining what “Agile Development” means. The word “Agile” can lead people to think that it means sloppy or without planning. The biggest piece of practicing agile software development that belies that notion is sprint planning. Regular sprint planning meetings lend structure to an agile process. Sprint planning meetings give the product owner and the team a chance to break up work in a reliable way.

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What a Product Owner is Not

A Product Owner is not necessarily an expert in technical matters. They should be able to accept advice and solicit input from the technical lead on a project, but they should not be expected to have the technical expertise to do research or evaluate technologies on their own. A Product Owner is best able to contribute to a project when they can rely on a technical lead to speak to technical challenges and give them informed options and honest feedback.

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Habits of an Effective Product Owner

The key value that a product owner offers in an agile project is clarity of vision. The product owner knows exactly what the product needs to be in order to succeed in the market, and what the priorities are for that to happen. There are a few things that an effective product owner will do on a recurring basis to keep the team moving toward that vision. Those things are to organize the backlog by priority, communicate both high-level and detailed objectives, and be responsive to changes or technical challenges.

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How to Streamline Your Team’s Product Backlog

Every project fights along at least two axes, budget and timeline. Another axis that can lead to trouble in a project is resourcing. Risk in each of these factors can be mitigated by thoughtful backlog grooming and task management. A good start to backlog grooming is to develop a product roadmap. Start from the high-level business goals, and break those down into consumable tasks that can provide a granular view of the big picture. The initial backlog should consist of an outline of the ‘big ticket items’. A big ticket item can be either a technically challenging piece of the work, or even just a known unknown. Doing that work, and doing it well, takes time and the ability to look at both the forest and the trees, but it can play a vital role in the success of a project.

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