Design Sprints are pretty awesome— you can come up with ideas, prototype, test and validate them all in one week— but you might wonder, when a sprint is over, what can you take from it? And how can you move forward? There are a few steps important things you can do to assure that everyone involved in the Design Sprint has their expectations met and to avoid losing momentum after a Sprint.
In this article, we’ll cover the 3 actions you can take to follow up a Design Sprint or workshop.
1. Create a Results Report – Get Stakeholder Buy-In
After running a Design Sprint, you’ll probably need to think about how to use the feedback from usability testing and discuss next steps. Product managers might need to come up with a clear business model to obtain more company resources for a new product. The Sprint facilitator (internal or externally hired) might want to inform stakeholders who didn’t participate in the Sprint about results, so that they can run them more often in the future.
To do this, we recommend creating a post-Sprint report. In addition to using photos to capture the progress of the design sprint, you can record the winning results from sticker-dot voting, like Sprint Goals, Sprint Questions, or Time Machine (if it’s a Service Design Sprint).
Post Sprint Report Contents
- Voting results/heat-maps
- Sprint goals
- Various activity results(Canvas)
- User testing feedback
The exact content of your report will vary depending on its purpose and what kind of Sprint or workshop you run. For example, during Service Design Sprints, we run user interviews (these are before prototyping, and totally separate from user testing). In this case, we also include user interview results.
This report will do more than just help the team re-examine their results before the next stage of product development, it will also serve as a basis for the team to persuade organizational stakeholders who have less design or Design Sprint experience to support future Sprints.
2. Carefully Check Feedback from User Testing – Decide Next Steps
The goal of prototyping and user testing is getting feedback from real users, to address the goals and questions defined on the first day of the Sprint. Then, the development team can decide how the project should proceed. In order for this to work, it’s important to have all the Design Sprint members review and discuss user test results, so they can decide what to improve during an iteration workshop and organize an idea backlog.
User testing results might not differ much from what you were expecting, but getting your idea verified in one week is still a game-changer. You can now move forward with confidence and proof to back up your claims!
Other times, user testing results may show that your idea didn’t go over well— that’s okay too! It took only 5 days to avoid wasting months (sometimes years) of time, manpower and cost on product development in a fundamentally wrong direction. “Failing” can actually provide a huge amount of value.
3. Review and Reflect – Learn by Doing
Lastly, it’s important to reflect on the Sprint experience itself. If you’re looking for a way to gather your thoughts after a Design Sprint, try out our Design Sprint Reflection Canvas.
The Design Sprint Reflection Canvas covers:
- Objective: It’s easy to forget your purpose as time passes so we always make sure the objective is clearly recorded.
- Highlights: Keep track of milestones not only for the team but also for yourself. Here, you can write down what parts of the process made you feel you were really enriching your knowledge or understanding.
- Difficulties: The sprint process can be iterated, just like prototypes and ideas can. There’s always room to improve! Write down what parts of this process didn’t work well for you.
- Lessons: After reviewing what went well and what didn’t, record what you feel you were able to learn.
- Deliverables: Here you can write down some results that you’ve created during the sprint. It could be user journey map, empathy map, prototype, persona etc.
- Next Steps: After a 4-5 day intense Design Sprint, it is important to get together with the other stakeholders, discuss, and record what next steps are needed to keep the project moving forward.
Keep all this information in one place, for easy reference. You can download the Design Sprint Reflection Canvas for free below!
Download the Design Sprint Reflection Canvas
Ching Ying Lin
Originally from Taiwan, currently based in Tokyo.
Chingying comes from a marketing background and is currently responsible for workshop design, sustainability and design seminar management, and supporting companies with sustainable transformation.
In addition to sustainable development and circular economy, she is also very interested in local creativity and public service design!