Value-driven design is where business goals, user needs, and tech intersect

What drives product design success? Is it business goals and objectives, user needs and expectations, or the innovative use of new and emerging technologies contributing to the creation of powerful, effective, and technically feasible solutions?

Or is it all about striking a balance between these three aspects? Let’s see how it maps out!

A holistic overlap of vision, usability, and innovation

Crafting effective, harmonious, and sustainable digital artifacts that are at the same time profitable, appealing, and feasible involves a multifaceted process. This process ideally balances three aspects in the optimal ratio:

  • The business perspective: Will it boost profits, align with company strategy, and consider stakeholder insights?
  • The user perspective: Who are the users, what do they expect or value, and what improvements do they desire?
  • The technological perspective: What technical aspects of the proposed solutions need consideration, are they feasible, and are they future-proof?

Understanding these perspectives sets the stage for why a comprehensive UX strategy is key.

Why UX (strategy) matters

Although user experience (UX), as suggested by its name, seems to prioritize user needs, a proficient UX designer/researcher should extend their influence beyond just this. They should aim to consider the bigger picture, crafting a UX strategy that aligns a company’s brand identity with the desired user experience at every touchpoint. This approach should combine business strategy, value innovation, validated user research, and exceptional user experience design.

A solid UX strategy ensures that the whole team stays focused on addressing the right problems for their target users, while also aligning business goals with user needs and technological capabilities. Such an approach provides clear success metrics, fostering a user-first mentality, and seamlessly connecting all touchpoints.

To excel in this challenging task and develop a robust UX strategy, here are some tools used in the UX discipline. These tools strive to maintain the necessary balance between business objectives, user needs, and technological considerations during the design process.


It goes without saying: interviews are probably the most efficient qualitative analysis tool available to designers. Here’s why. Thanks to the in-depth nature of this research phase, interviews help ensure that the design process aligns with company goals, remains user-centered, and is technically feasible.

A thorough interview process takes into account the perspectives of all stakeholders: company employees at every level, end users, developers, and any other relevant parties. The more perspectives and information gathered, the better.

  • Starting with the business perspective, interviewing company employees—from CEOs and product managers to sales and marketing staff—enables designers to understand the brand’s high-level goals and objectives, as well as the product’s role in their overall strategy.
  • For end users, it’s vital to understand how they use (or wish to use) the service or product, their difficulties, unmet needs, and how the final design can better satisfy these requirements.
  • As for technological feasibility, involving developers early in the design process is crucial. Their insights ensure that the design is not only user-friendly but also technically achievable. They help identify and understand any technical challenges, limitations, or constraints that could affect user experience and design quality, including platform-specific requirements and compatibility issues. Additionally, developers can provide valuable feedback on the practicality of design concepts and suggest alternative approaches that may align better with technical specifications.
  • Depending on the project, other parties such as vendors or partners may also offer valuable insights about the product or service.

For example, when we did the brand identity refresh and website redesign for eOne Solutions, employee interviews turned out to be invaluable. We got a clear picture of what each department needed and turned that into a game plan. It was all about asking the right questions to really understand their requests, figure out any blockers and limitations, and come up with solutions.

On top of that, talking directly with eOne’s partners and customers was also eye-opening. We got to hear exactly what they needed and expected. This way, we could identify any weak spots and fix them up without getting our wires crossed by middlemen. Keeping the lines of communication wide open like this meant we could tackle challenges more effectively.

Value proposition canvas

The value proposition canvas (VPC) is a framework that helps make sure we’re designing products or services that really hit the mark with what customers need and value. The idea is to use it as a guide when creating a digital artifact—making sure it ticks all the boxes for business goals, user needs, and what’s actually doable with the technology. It’s all about looking at the big picture and solving customer problems in the best way possible.

Picture the VPC like a visual map. It’s got two main parts: the customer profile (the circle part) and the value map (the square bit). In the customer profile, we dive into figuring out who the target customers are and what they’re looking for. The value map, on the other hand, shows how the company plans to meet those needs with their products or services.

Why is the VPC so important? Because it keeps us on track to create something that’s not only useful and achievable but also sustainable and profitable. In other words, it means whatever we make should hit the sweet spot of meeting the business objectives, being user-friendly, and feasible with the available resources. Plus, it keeps the whole creation process smooth and focused because we’re always working towards clear, well-thought-out goals.

Take our project with eOne, for example. We used the VPC to get a grip on their unique value proposition and figure out the best way to communicate it on their new website. This approach was a game-changer in making sure the end product was just what users needed and nailed the business objectives too.

Customer journey map

One really effective tool we often include in our UX strategy for a top-notch design project is the customer journey map. This nifty tool lets designers map out the entire user experience from start to finish, covering every touchpoint users have with the product or service.

It’s super useful for understanding user needs, identifying friction points, and improving the overall user experience. For example, it can highlight those key moments where users might get frustrated or confused, and then we can brainstorm ways to make those parts better.

Also, this tool isn’t just about the user experience; it makes sure we don’t lose sight of business goals during the design phase. Say the company wants to ramp up sales—the customer journey map can show where users might be more inclined to buy and help us figure out how to encourage purchases right at those points.

But here’s the thing; when we’re piecing together a customer journey map, we need to juggle user needs, business aims, and what’s actually doable, tech-wise. For example, we might spot a chance for a cool new feature that could seriously elevate our user experience game. Before we commit, though, we have to check if it’s technically feasible. Maybe it needs a lot of development work or just isn’t compatible with the existing tech setup.

Sometimes, these maps point out how we can use technology to fix user experience issues. Maybe there’s a step in the process where users always get stuck. Once we know why, we can look for tech solutions to sort it out.

By taking this approach, we make sure our design process is well-rounded, realistic, and considers every aspect of the user experience.


While user experience is undoubtedly a key part of the design process, it shouldn’t be the sole focus. UX designers really need to broaden their horizons, looking at the bigger picture to understand how users interact with a product or service in its entirety. This way, they can maximize benefits for both the users and the company.

Having a robust UX strategy is key. It keeps the whole team laser-focused on tackling the right issues for their target audience. At the same time, it ensures alignment between business objectives, user needs, and technological possibilities. This approach not only sets clear goals for success but also fosters a user-centric mindset and ties in all aspects of the user experience.

By embracing a comprehensive approach and utilizing tools like interviews, the value proposition canvas, and customer journey maps, designers can craft products and services that hit the sweet spot: they resonate with users, meet business objectives, and are technologically sound.


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