User Experience is a broad discipline—that hasn’t changed in more than 15 years. However, organizations have started to recognize this discipline more these days. Nevertheless, that doesn’t affect how we scope projects.
You can define project scope based on:
1. Best practices
In the project-management world, people generally take it as a time -and- material project. Such projects have a specific goal such as: create a Website. User Experience is an important component of building a Web site, but the term User Experience can cover a multitude of different processes and deliverables. Most of the project managers don’t have the expertise to propose a detailed list of UX tasks that you should include on a given project. The best project managers request a proposal from the UX professional who is assigned to the project. In such cases, you can propose whatever you think is the best approach. You’ll likely have to refine and adjust your proposal until the team and clients are all aligned.
2. Budget Allocation
This is what we call a fixed-budget project. In those cases, you’ll likely receive a budget that stakeholders have allocated to the UX-design portion of the project. Again, User Experience could mean anything to them. Some define simple definitions for everyone is different, so defining what’s in scope is important. Having a budgetary constraint—or even a timeline constraint—can help you determine what UX activities could be in scope and what couldn’t possibly be in scope. For instance, if a project allocated $12,000 to the UX portion of a project, that budget is unlikely to support usability testing. The great thing about fixed-budget projects is that they’re often based on an annual or quarterly client budget—meaning, there are often additional funds available for a good reason. With projects like these, it’s tempting to offer only services and deliverables that fall within the allocated budget—as opposed to what’s right or desirable for a project. I’ll propose what fits within the budget, then also provide the business cases for doing anything that isn’t within the budget. For instance, if usability testing would be desirable, I’ll write a business case outlining the value it could bring to the table along with its associated costs. Most of the time, clients won’t find the extra money or time, but sometimes they do, and they always appreciate the advice.
What comes under the umbrella UX
“There are a lot of ways to read this question,”. “Because the answer is easy, I’m going with this interpretation: which of these practices should User Experience own? The answer: I don’t care.
“The list of things that fits under the UX umbrella has always been too large for any individual to be equally good at all of them. The job titles and roles of the people who perform UX activities has changed in a period of time.
“I care that people understand when and where customer interviewing is necessary. I care that it is done well.
We’ve also seen the emergence of more fine-grained specialties such as motion design, which some might simply consider a subset of graphic design. As the software industry continues to evolve, I’m sure User Experience will adapt to meet its needs—and that likely means we’ll see more new UX specialties in the future.”