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Design Workshops with Clients. What are their Goals and Benefits?

We often work with clients who have great ideas which need to be systematised. The project vision must be clear and possible for further implementation. Therefore, in order to launch the design and professional Drupal development services, and thus – develop a given specification, a great solution are product workshops (sometimes also called a facilitation or design workshops).

What are workshops?

Workshops are a form of a meeting between the client, represented by the persons responsible for the project, and the designer, project manager, developer working at Droptica. However, the precise list of people is selected for specific workshops after a prior determination of needs. The purpose of such a meeting is to obtain information from the client in order to define the scope of the project and outline its general shape and necessary functionalities.

During workshops, we introduce to what is UX design all about, and we learn about the client's expectations and let them systematise the idea. We talk about the aforementioned functionalities, the scale of the project, business goals, users, and expectations. The results developed during workshops constitute the basis for taking further steps in building the application.

Benefits of design workshops

A face-to-face conversation during workshops is the best method to identify the client's needs. Gathering a group of people from both the client's and the contractor's side allows you to build a vision of the project based on the points of view of different people. Thanks to the exchange of views and experiences, we can make the client and ourselves aware of what they really need. The benefit of workshops is that all participants at the same time focus their attention on the concept being developed. The presence of many people allows for immediate validation of ideas and deciding whether to include them within the scope of the project.

Workshops usually take several days. During this time, we are able to collect specific information establishing which would take weeks using remote communication means, and the effect would probably be worse than the one achieved during workshops.

The benefit of workshops is also the fact that the client does not have to define the technical specifications by themselves. It is an advantage when the client does not have the experience, skills, and knowledge to accurately describe the specification of the digital product – i.e. quite often. It saves the client's time and ensures them that the defined vision is being created under the supervision of specialists.

How do we conduct workshops?

The best results are achieved during face-to-face meetings. Within a few days (usually 2-4 days) we are able to achieve satisfactory results. Workshops are being conducted in the form of conversations and exercises allowing to learn the very essence of a project.

We work using pens, cards, boards, and notepads. Drawing, taking notes, sticking pieces of information cards is used to instantly transfer thoughts into the real world. Thanks to this, after a while all participants can talk and exchange opinions together, based on what they see. Transferring ideas into paper results in discussions and brainstorming, which in our opinion is the best method of shaping a concept. The result of the meeting is the developed vision of the project. Most often it is not a final and closed vision, but it allows us to move on with our work.

What is the next step after workshops?

Completed workshops provide the client with the scope of the project. They have a list of subpages with elements on each of them. Sometimes the meetings also result in sketches of individual subpages in the form of wireframes. Such a compilation may be submitted for estimation and valuation. The client may entrust us with this task, but they may also use the services of another company. This is a great help for the programmers who will read the specification. When preparing such initial documentation, we make sure that it is understandable and clear for the people who do not participate in its development. Our experience allows us to provide the obtained information in an organised form.

Summary

We encourage all clients to take advantage of Drupal consulting, to participate in workshops. Such meetings bring benefits especially for projects that do not have a precise vision yet. For the client, workshops often are the first contact with specialists from the IT industry, and it is an ideal opportunity to present one's idea to potential contractors. Each look at an idea from the point of view of experience in areas such as design, UX, programming and project management certainly brings significant value at the beginning of building a new application or website.

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