VTT offers services for different stages of human-centred development
processes (see the diagram). The best results can be obtained when user
perspective is taken into account from the very beginning of design.
We can take full responsibility for human-centred design in the service or
product development process, or we can take part only in specific tasks
according to the wishes of each client.
Research on usage cultures. The needs and expectations of users and
customers are the starting point for service development. The service can be
adjusted to the habits and practices that the users have already adopted. On
the other hand, the service can bring about the emergence of new habits of use
or usage cultures. We study users' attitudes, needs and expectations mainly
using qualitative methods. We emphasise the importance of real usage
situations (contexts of use) as well as users' images and experience of the
service. We aim for "deep knowledge", conduct comprehensive interviews, and
observe real usage situations in different environments like at work, at
school, at home or in different free-time activities of the user.
Concept design. We create ideas, design, and implement new product and
service concepts. In the creation of new concepts, we benefit from VTT's
expertise in software design, signal processing, graphic design and user
experience. In the development of new technologies, we rely particularly on
scenario methods. They enable us to demonstrate to potential users how the new
technology could be a part of their everyday lives.
Demonstrating design solutions to users. It is important to test
different design possibilities with users during the early phases of
development. We demonstrate ideas to users with the help of use scenarios and
paper or proof of concept prototypes.
User requirements specification relates user needs to technological
possibilities. We define user requirements using tools like user and task
analysis, scenario methods, focus group discussions, and user evaluations of
Expert evaluation. We analyse user interfaces based on
technology-specific guidelines and general user interface design heuristics.
The evaluation report describes identified problems and improvement
suggestions. Expert evaluation is at its most effective when we participate in
the user interface design from the very beginning and see to it that the
relevant usability guidelines are being observed.
Usability evaluation in laboratory settings. In laboratory tests, users
try out early paper or technical prototypes of the product in order to
identify potential usability problems. The earlier the problems are
identified, the easier it is to fix them. We have a traditional usability
laboratory and virtual reality laboratories where future applications can be
tried in simulated environments.
Usability evaluation in the field. In field tests, we assess user
acceptance of a pilot or actual service in real-life situations. This enables
us also to collect feedback on user experience. We can make one-off field
tests that resemble laboratory testing as well as long-term field trials. In a
long-term trial, we observe the ways in which users adopt the product and what
kinds of usage habits begin to emerge. Our data collection methods include
video and audio recordings, use diaries, and usage logs.
Prototyping of product concepts. We develop technical prototypes that
implement designed functions either in entirety or partially, depending on the
situation. Prototypes can be implemented either on the target platform or as
simulations on other platforms.
Consultation. We offer consulting tailored to the customer's needs, for
instance, we can assist in adopting human-centred design approach in your
Contact us and we can find out together how our expertise can best work for
you in the development of your product or service.