We just got back from our whirlwind trip running design jams in our offices in Hyderabad and Bangalore. While we wait for jet lag to diminish and we are able to get our internal summaries of the entries together, I thought I'd share the fact that design jams are taking off as a way to foster innovation and solve design challenges in many places at Oracle. I've always said that my goal is to run enough hackathons, design jams and ShipIts internally at Oracle to train some other key facilitators to enable us to scale, and further embed the user-centered design approach. One of those facilitators is our own UX Group Manager, Jayanth Ananthakrishnan. He runs a team focused on the PeopleSoft User Experience and is based out of Bangalore. His team ran a design jam for their Bangalore-based development and product management counterparts. Here's his write up.
Guest post from Jayanth Ananthakrishnan, Applications UX Group Manager
Design thinking has been a hot topic within various groups of PeopleSoft. I honestly cannot remember any group or leader saying that they disagreed with the concept of design thinking for product innovation.
We decided to create a buzz within PeopleSoft about “Design thinking for product innovation”. We thought the best way to create this awareness is to conduct a design jam. Honestly, none of us in IDC had a clue on how to go about conducting a design jam. I knew that the Oracle Applications User Experience Labs(UX) team at HQ has organized and held many of these design jams. We read some of their blogs to get us started.
A small team was formed to put a plan together for this event. Since this was the first time we decided to conduct this event in the Oracle India office, Bangalore on August 5th, 2015. The participating teams had two options.
1. Design a solution for a given problem statement
2. Or choose their own.
Teams showcasing their design concepts
We identified 3 major factors for judging
1. Overall User experience (50%) – Does it engage the user and is it pleasurable to use?
Does it quickly and efficiently help the user solve a problem?
2. Enterprise applicability (30%) – Does the design provide a competitive advantage or can we build upon it?
3. Productizability (20%) – Creativity is important but are there dependencies on the design that make it unfeasible to actually build?
Over 23 teams across PeopleSoft Development, QA, and Product Management participated in the
event. All teams came prepared with a business problem they were trying to solve in the form of an elevator pitch & a prototype.
We’ve had some pretty amazing ideas originate from this design jam. We surprised
ourselves with this event which showcased collaboration, innovation, and user-centric approach from every team.
Overall it was good fun. We learnt a few things that worked well and a few things we need to improve on. We plan to do more such events in the future.
Thanks to Jayanth for the post. For those of you US-based, on behalf of the whole UX Innovation Labs team, let me wish you Happy Thanksgiving!