Design
Jacek Ludzik
Jacek Ludzik
Product Designer
2021-09-14

3 Common Challenges in Product Design

Working as a Product Designer, no matter if commercial or non-profit, usually is about talking with clients, stakeholders and teammates about basically everything, from business purposes of the product to UI nuances in high-fidelity views.

Depending on how talented the designer is, some tasks might be child's play, but others can require more focus or knowledge. They shouldn't make the designer resentful towards his work because the challenge is what forces people to get better and better at what they do. Moreover, they are a huge opportunity to get in front of the line. Choosing 3 challenging tasks in Product Designer's work is like choosing 3 favorite songs from your playlist. Nearly impossible, right? Especially when you have just discovered a new genre and the list is getting longer. Nevertheless, I will try to pick three of the most common ones that I faced during the design process.

Accessibility vs UI

Dealing with accessibility guidelines, such as WCAG, might be tricky especially if it ruins your beautiful UI because it turns out that white text color on yellow background isn't that good idea and half of society won't be able to read it. Basically, every digital product should be accessible for as wide a group of customers as possible; on the other hand, it's impossible to design a product for everyone. Let's assume that the client needs all accessibility guidelines met because the target group has sight problems. In this case, a good solution might be to apply some toggle buttons in the accessibles (it's not that obvious) and position it to switch between modes.

Deadlines

I know. A nightmare of the majority of designers. Deadlines can be scary, especially when there were a few mistakes in estimations and on one of those beautiful days the designer realizes they won't finish everything on time. We are only humans; it happens. So, how to deal with it? How to work without time pressure (at least not too great) and even sleep more? Well, when work is in the middle of the whole process, it might to a bit too late and the only solution is to scale down some less important parts of the product, such as micro-interactions. These can be done later, in the meantime, which gives more time to perfect the already existing parts to present to the client. Still, the safest solution for both time and money problems is to estimate the project with a time reserve because that will ensure you have the time for everything that was included in the scope.

creative product design process

Ask good questions

Working as a designer is, in this case, similar to a detective job. Asking good questions is absolutely crucial to discover the train of thoughts that led to the crime. In the design industry, there's a much harder task – the designers have to figure out what are people’s pains, needs and desires. Then find a solution for them. Answers to good questions might help understand the marketplace and the target group the product is directed to. None of the designers like that moment when the product doesn't match the requirements because the needs of the customers weren't specified correctly. Remember to ask questions. No matter if you're a designer or a client. Don't hesitate because communication is essential.

Challenges are just higher or lower walls to jump over, and, in most cases, they make us stronger. Don't be afraid of them and remember to enjoy your work in the end of the day.

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