Design Feature Requirements

A guide for designers to make sure they understand the PO’s vision and goals for a feature. Access Github Repo.
agile; product-design; UX; UI; interaction;
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Checklist Objective

Understanding the scope of a feature during a meeting with Product Owners is a key activity in the product design cycle. Designers need to make sure we understand the stakeholder’s vision for it, and what is the goal we’re striving for.

Briefing with client

Ask the following questions during the first sync with your client/product owner. Refer back to them when you’re shaping the feature. Ideas might come up, but try to focus on understanding what value the team is expected to deliver.
  • What does the user need to achieve?
  • Is there any user data or feedback backing up this feature request?
  • Which pain points need to be fixed/minimized?
  • How will this make our product better?
  • How does this feature align with the product strategy?
  • Which metrics will define this feature’s success? (current/expected)
  • Which metrics can we look at to understand this feature’s outcome once it’s live?
  • What basic behavior is the PO envisioning for this?
    • Only ask this one if you have a straight answer to all the previous questions!

Understanding user feedback

Try to answer the following questions whenever a feature or improvement based on user feedback comes up as a design assignment. User feedback is very important, but it needs to be treated thoughtfully. The answers to these questions will give the team a clearer picture of how well defined the problem is, help prioritize the feature, and guide the next phases (do more research, or move to the design solution).
  • Are user complaints recurring or anecdotal?
  • What’s the % of our user base that is having this problem?
  • Is this use case common among our user base or specific to one person or context?
  • How critical is the problem?
  • Is it stopping users from performing an important action?
    • Is it slowing down users while performing a task?
    • Is it inducing users to error? Is it driving users out of the product?
    • Is it impacting users' perception of the product as a whole?
    • Is the reported pain point enough to understand the problem and propose a solution?

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