The principles of data-driven design

In a world where the volume of data being captured increases exponentially every waking hour, the opportunities to use data insights to create the next generation of products are everywhere.

But why is it so difficult for designers, product teams and entire organisations to even get started? Our new report outlines the barriers to data-driven design and how you can overcome them.

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In this report you'll learn:
  • how to spot the opportunities to use data insights to create the next generation of products
  • why it is difficult for designers, product teams and entire organisations to get started (but why they should care)
  • the barriers to data-driven design and how to overcome them
Note: If you experience issues with a download, it may be a firewall preventing your download. If this is the case, please reach out directly and we will email a copy to you.

The future of design rests with data


At Portable, we’ve been designing products and services for over a decade. In that time we have witnessed the world of design grow and redefine itself through the introduction of digital design as a new field. There’s been an awakening among designers as to the role we can play in shaping systems and services. Through this period, we have experienced every type of client you could possibly encounter, and seen the impact that leaders can have on design outcomes at any stage of product or service development.

We believe in human-centred design. We know that when applied correctly, human-centred design processes achieve incredible results. However, if an organisation is unable to effectively and efficiently practice design thinking, then either the company is broken and in need of changing its culture, structures and methodology (no small task for many of the large orgs we work with) or we as designers should explore new ways to get better outcomes and move the practice forward.

A few years ago, we took a time-out from using a strict human-centered design approach as a guiding principle for how to design complex systems and challenged ourselves to experiment with other methods of discovery, design and delivery. We were able to do this internally on a few of the projects and products that exist within Portable, then we were fortunate to have the blessing from a couple of forward-thinking (but traditionally behemoth) organisations to trial our ideas in the real world.

Where we landed, after multiple iterations, is at a place, or rather a methodology, that we’re calling a 'data-driven approach' to design. Think of it as a human-centred design process that brings quantitative data to the forefront of every decision and pushes design teams to think less on their feet and instead more in a way that constantly responds to data.

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