Design is more than just the look of a product. Product design services are extremely focused on the functionality and usability of a product as well. Ergonomics and other humanistic factors play into the value proposition and success of its launch. Without these considerations, a product may cause unnecessary frustration, stress, or injury to the consumer. Humanistic factors apply to handheld devices such as electronics or tools as well as larger-scale items like vehicles or furniture.
According to product design companies, a handheld device must offer visual appeal, sensory contact cues, and ease of operation. When developing a product, designers should understand the demographics of the primary consumer. What is their average hand size and how will the product fit? What features is the consumer expecting from this product and will they be available in this model?
There are many different strategies that designers can employ to meet the needs of the consumer. The job, then, becomes choosing which one has the best chance of success. A product design and development company can rely on research, prototypes, and focus groups to help decide on the best version of the product. Internal and external features can be properly evaluated once the design has made it past certain obstacles.
Ergonomics can be tested with full-scale mockups and hand-made models or prototypes. These models allow both designers and focus group members to interact with the product physically. Once the design is presented in a real, 3-D form, any mistakes will become apparent. When evaluating a prototype in a focus group, you must take note of vocal reactions but you should also pay attention to how the product is used. Listen to the feedback, but also watch how the user is employing the features. Are they holding it correctly? Are the features apparent? Observe for any signs of incompatibility. People might not vocalize some of the key reasons the product is not working because they don’t know how it was intended to be used.
Product design services approach humanistic factors the same way for non-handheld devices. Furniture, work desks, chairs, and medical carts must be optimized for the user as well. However, this time, the designer has to account for the consumer’s whole body. Demographics for this type of product include average proportions, height, reach, and posture. In order to align the prospective buyer with the product, the product has to accommodate the person’s body. The more thought goes into ergonomics, the higher quality the product. This is especially important for products that are used daily. Consumers start to notice the ergonomics on a long-term basis and will invest in a product again if it lives up to their desired level of comfort and efficiency.
As you can see, ergonomics and other humanistic factors make a big difference when it comes to creating a competitive product. By focusing on these factors, designers increase the overall value proposition and chances of a successful launch. Properly optimized products will ensure comfort and efficiency for the consumer and endear them to the brand.