THE DOUBLE DIAMOND
The Design Council describes the design process as a double diamond with four phases – discover, define, develop, deliver.
This involves discovering what people’s experiences are, defining a problem you can tackle, developing ideas for possible solutions, prototyping ideas to test thinking and gather feedback, then refining prototypes for further testing, implementation and evaluation.
During the process you flip back and forward between divergent and convergent thinking – between thinking broadly and focussing down.
In practice – parts of the process are repeated – especially in the delivery/implementation phase – the idea is tested, refined to reflect feedback gathered ‘in use’, then tested again. Once it is ‘good enough to go’ the idea is rolled out on a small scale to iron out issues before being fully put into practice. Even once implemented, modifications in use by those using or delivering the service should be incorporated into the next versions.
The four stages highlight the commonalities of a creative process.
Discover – Starting a project takes up the first quarter of the model. Problem identification, insights gathering and ideas creation take place.
Define – In the second quarter, designers make sense of what they had defined at previous stage. In this phase, we prioritise, set goals, and define potential steps.
Develop – Next, development of solutions or concepts takes place, followed by prototyping, testing and reiteration. Do not be scared of failing.
Deliver – At the final delivery stage, resulting project is produced. However, the stages can be repeated multiple times with the help of many of the tools and methods which you can find detailed here.
Here is a short video we made explaining the Double Diamond.