Moonshot began as an experimental lab, but as we’ve experimented with our own model and offerings, we’ve evolved. We’ve developed a robust innovation practice, helping clients explore innovation opportunities not only in technology, but also in experience design and product innovation. Our innovation process fuses elements from Human Centered Design, Design Thinking, Maker Culture, Lean Startup, and our own programs, such as Rotation Week.
1. Empathy and Insights
Our process begins with establishing a deep understanding of the people for whom we are designing a solution. We want to understand not only their needs, but the emotional depth and context that surrounds them. We create a nuanced portrait of our users through ethnographic surveys, interviews, and site visits. We’re looking to understand not only the explicit needs, but their implicit needs as well to generate a detail-dense description of our user that will provide the fuel we need to inspire the next phase of our process.
2. Interpretation and Ideation
We frequently transition to the next phase with a workshop. We convene a carefully curated collective comprised of Barkley partners, client stakeholders, relevant outside provocateurs, and the Moonshot team. As a group, we begin by unpacking the learnings and identifying meaningful themes, insights, and opportunities. Next we craft a written Point of View: a concise, compelling expression of our new perspective on the user and her/his needs. We then generate lots of ideas in response to our Point of View. We brainstorm collectively and iteratively. We give voice to our boldest wonderings. We imagine possible futures. By the conclusion of the workshop we have uncovered many of the essential qualities, features, and components that should comprise the experience.
3. Prototyping and Testing
In the final stage of our process, we make our ideas tangible in the form of prototypes and share them with users for feedback. A prototype is a key moment in the design process - a bridge between concept ideation and project implementation. We execute our prototypes in quick test-and-learn sprints. At the start of each sprint, we identify a testable component of the overall experience, we design and build it to the degree necessary to demonstrate the concept, and we launch it on a moderated testing platform to a group of users. As the sprints progress, we ramp up the fidelity and level of complexity. The ideas and executions evolve and grow in response to real-time user feedback. This way of working allows us to examine micro moments of interaction and evaluate their viability within the holistic system. The culmination of this phase is an integrated test that allows us to assess how the elements of the experience work together and to layer on critical business viability analyses to ensure that the experience not only meets user desires, but will result in a strong, viable business as well.
At the conclusion of this third phase, we have a working prototype of our experience that has been vigorously user-tested and validated against the business scenario. The ground work for product launch is purposefully laid, and we are off looking for our next challenge!