By Debbie McConnell and Scott Danhof, Battelle
When designing a medical device, nothing beats direct observation of and feedback from the people who will be using it. Ideally, this research is performed as a close partnership between the human factors researchers and the engineers who will be working on the device.
Directly participating in the user research sessions and observing users first hand provides a deeper understanding of user needs and user interface requirements than simply reading the final user research report. Building effective partnerships during the user research process will also ensure that engineers will get answers to the questions that are most critical to them for making design decisions.
To get the most out of user research, engineers need to have an understanding of how the process works and how they can participate productively. Here are five things engineers should know about user research before starting on their next medical device development project.