3. Work on human factors formative studies early in your design process
Effectively integrating usability into the design process will save both time and money on re-design, as well as safety issues and product recalls. Catching usability issues early allows optimization to user interface and avoids issues in summative validation, or post-production release. Design iterations completed late in development can be significantly more costly than addressing issues early in product development.
It’s crucial to make a product that the user will love. People develop emotional associations with products that they use, and medical devices are no exception. A device that is difficult, non-intuitive, or otherwise “quirky” to use is not going to get traction in the marketplace when compared to something that is elegant, simple and seamlessly fits into everyday routines. Healthcare practitioners have limited time for overly complex devices, and savvy patients increasingly have a voice in making their healthcare decisions.
These factors are all critical to creating a successful breakthrough product.
Jeff Champagne is director of business development at MPR Associates. For more information about developing a product with MPR Product Development Group, visit www.breakthroughproducts.com