Scenario-Focused Engineering: Design and Innovation for Software Engineers (Developer Best Practices) 1st Edition
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"This book is a treasure-trove of insights into how individuals and teams can lock in on incomplete ideas, or free themselves to be much more flexiblle in coming around to designs that directly meet the customer's needs.: -Richard Ells, Senior Webmaster, University of Washington
From the Back Cover
Great technology alone is rarely sufficient to ensure a product's success. Scenario-Focused Engineering is a customer-centric, iterative approach used to design and deliver the seamless experiences and emotional engagement customers demand in new products. In this book, you'll discover the proven practices and lessons learned from real-world implementations of this approach, including why delight matters, what it means to be customer-focused, and how to iterate effectively using the Fast Feedback Cycle.
In an engineering environment traditionally rooted in strong analytics, the ideas and practices for Scenario-Focused Engineering may seem counter-intuitive. Learn how to change your team's mindset from deciding what a product, service, or device will do and solving technical problems to discovering and building what customers actually want. Improve the methods and mindsets you use to:
"This is an essential book for all engineers building out their innovation capacities." Bruce Nussbaum, former Assistant Managing Editor, Business Week; Professor of Innovation and Design, Parsons The New School for Design
"Scenario-Focused Engineering gives the engineer a new way to narrow in on solutions, with the customer as their partner in a series of focused experiments." Tim Ogilvie, CEO, Peer Insight, and co-author, Designing for Growth
"The Scenario-Focused Engineering approach was foundational to how we evolved our engineering culture, bringing our engineering, design, and marketing teams together." Chuck Friedman, Corporate Vice President, Microsoft
This book's primary audience is software engineers, software development leads, group managers, senior leaders, designers, user researchers, and product planners.
- Item Weight : 2.07 pounds
- Paperback : 304 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0735679339
- ISBN-13 : 978-0735679337
- Dimensions : 7.25 x 1 x 9 inches
- Publisher : Microsoft Press; 1st edition (September 25, 2014)
- Language: : English
- Best Sellers Rank: #2,350,200 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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If we can state what customer success looks like in terms of desired outcomes we can then attach measures to those outcomes. Those measures tell us what data we need to collect, and what data drives our decisions. And then we do it all over again, since SFE is an iterative methodology, we continually collect data, adjust our models, brainstorm solutions, implement those solutions, and then collect data again on the new solution. In this way it is very compatible with agile methodologies.
My primary area for improvement for the book (and why I deduct 1 star, but would only really deduct 0.5 stars if I could) is that the book tends to skew more towards customer experience and associated metrics than software application operations and its metrics. I am happy to see these metrics get some acknowledgement (starting with the "pyramid" diagram 11-3), but software engineers will need to supplement the information provided in this book with other sources on collecting and using operational metrics.
For every software team I work with that asks me how they can improve quality I almost always start to explore the role of the customer in their product development, and what data they use to understand their customer-centric impact. For teams who want to explore this, Scenario-Focused Engineering: A toolbox for innovation and customer-centricity is a great place to start.
[Disclosure: I was involved in implementing and teaching SFE at Microsoft, and I provided review for a chapter of the book]
Austina and Drew know their audience. In Scenario-Focused Engineering, they have themselves created a product that understands their users (readers) and meets their needs incredibly well.
I evaluate the software development capabilities of companies for a living. Every company I talk to could benefit from the principles in this book. Check on this yourself: Do your epics or business plans have a clear definition of who your customer is (a persona backed by data for instance), their needs from their point of view, and measurable outcomes they will get? I'll bet that, even if you use standard user stories, you have a description of a solution instead of an insight that will solve a (often unarticulated) customer need. Do go more than a month without getting customer validation of your design or implementation? Do you have connection points throughout you development cycle where you are listening to your customers and using that feedback in a timely manner? Are you making a lot of features or focusing on a few key wins?
SFE takes you through the process of iteratively listening to the customer so that you build the right thing. It brings together elements of user experience, customer listening, and project planning to help you pick and create the things your customers truly crave in an agile way.
[Disclosure: I was involved with measuring and teaching SFE within Microsoft and now teach this to other companies]