Setting the foundation for interactive prototyping in MS PowerPoint

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Photo by Balázs Kétyi on Unsplash

MS PowerPoint is my personal tool of choice for various design work i.e. creating pitch decks, e-product launch posters, short animations, and interactive prototypes because of the three key reasons:

  1. Availability — comes pre-installed in most corporate computers, even in strict environments i.e. government, defence, and banking sectors without you having to request for approvals for software cost, etc.


Five simple steps towards improving product quality and increasing adoption

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Photo by Element5 Digital on Unsplash

Why conduct user tests?

Below are three key reasons that I chose to conduct user tests with my users before launching the digital product to the masses:

  • Validate: ensures that the product fits the needs and provide value for my target users/groups

I have consolidated the five steps which I took to conduct a simple user test for my users:

  1. Establish test objectives

Important activities and tasks to take note of in preparation for your project transition

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Photo by Neil Thomas on Unsplash

What happens after a project ends?

The transition to the post-production/maintenance phase begins. The transition primarily involves tasks and activities that span the following three broad categories:

  • People — planning for support teams (L1/L2/L3), educating end-users

The goal is to provide assurance to the client that their business will continue to function after the departure of the project team.

I will delve into further details for each of the categories mentioned above — providing some perspectives from a project manager and client.

People

During the project transition phase, the people-related considerations are centred around these…


Tweak your product design quickly so that developers can ship useful product features fast

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Photo by Braden Collum on Unsplash

A lean design sprint is a scaled-down design approach that involves delivering artefacts quickly in an iterative fashion to obtain user feedback with limited resources.

I have recently completed a design sprint and have found this approach especially useful for product designers/teams that want to build a quick and usable solution to prove value before proceeding with further commitments.

I’ll be sharing briefly on the approach. The lean design sprint consists of four broad steps:

  1. Prototype: Establish initial sketches of user journeys


Ensure that vulnerabilities are properly addressed through a security assessment before your application goes live

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Photo by NeONBRAND on Unsplash

What is the security assessment about?

Anything can happen when your app gets released to the public. As we don’t know what we don’t know, it’s important to ensure that proper measures are in place to mitigate the risks and application vulnerabilities — through a security assessment and audit.

What does the security assessment and tests cover?

The coverage of the security assessment and tests vary across projects, but they would generally cover the following areas:

  • Mobile and web application penetration tests: OWASP Top 10 20XX vulnerabilities

What is the process like?

I will be sharing my experience — at a high level — from an infrastructure engineer’s perspective. …


Five useful components of a user story specification that facilitates the delivery of your solution

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Photo by Art Lasovsky on Unsplash

Writing a useful user story can make a significant difference in your delivery timeline in the long run.

What is a user story?

In an agile delivery framework, a user story is the smallest unit of work to be delivered. The end deliverable should be able to demonstrate value to the user in the form of addressing the needs of the user specified in the user story; it’s essentially a user requirement that’s focused on the user’s experience.

What makes a good user story?

The way you write the user story would determine the outcome of the deliverable. Hence, it’s important to include the essential components in the form of specifications to the delivery team that will be building the solution based on the story. …


Practical examples to estimate, quantify, and present your digital transformation project benefits to investors

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Photo by Isaac Smith on Unsplash

Numbers form the backbone of project proposals to obtain funding from sponsors.

The benefits have to be packaged in a way that’s easily understood by the stakeholders for them to capture the value of your project and make an investment. However, you must also be able to justify the numbers when required.

This article covers a six-step approach to package benefits to potential sponsors:

  1. Establish and communicate the benefits


Set up an operating model that complements your business

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Photo by Marius Masalar on Unsplash

A digital factory is a cross-functional unit within an organisation that incorporates a modern style of working and utilises advanced digital platforms to drive transformation throughout the business.

For companies to advance digitally effectively, management has to consider restructuring their organisational structure to embrace digital transformation; this can be done by adopting a suitable operating model that caters to the strategy, constraints, and structure of the company.

I’ll be sharing at a high level on the approach and considerations for setting up a digital factory within your organisation. The three broad steps are:

  1. Address the pre-requisites


Technology is just a part of the larger equation

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Photo by Chris Lawton on Unsplash

An effective digital transformation encompasses the entire spectrum of business and technology elements. What I have found surprising after moving from a technology-oriented to a business-oriented environment was the significance of technology in driving digital transformation—it’s much less than I thought, whereas there’s a huge dependency on business and people elements to ensure an effective transformation.

The two worlds: business and technology, are becoming more intertwined together such that it’s difficult to talk about one without talking about the other.

Background

The shift in the environment

I recently moved from dealing primarily with machines to humans. Instead of writing scripts, codes, and managing infrastructure, now I’m writing and designing more proposals, road maps, screen flows, and managing stakeholders. …


An overview of the design thinking approach, methods and tools

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Photo by You X Ventures on Unsplash

Design thinking workshops and approaches have helped me to effectively navigate through today’s VUCA environment, where the “test and learn” approach is often favoured over “plan and implement”.

Background

I attended my first design thinking workshop a couple of years ago while I was working at an internal startup team — it has changed the way I approach problems since. I’ve been applying the concepts in one way or another in my daily work throughout, and have found them useful.

The methods and tools can be applied across many areas of my work ranging from addressing design feedback, crafting new strategies, recruitment approaches, and product development. …

About

Jimmy Soh

In perpetual beta—playing at the intersection between digital technology and business.

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