Some job titles are pretty self explanatory. Teachers teach students. Garbage collectors collect garbage. Candlestick makers make candlesticks. At first glance, the title of “product designer” seems to fall into the same category. What does a product designer do? Well, they design products, silly. Of course, there’s a lot more to it than that. Job descriptions and Google searches can give you a general idea of the field, but what do they actually do on a day-to-day basis.
- Research – So much of what a product designer does involves researching before doing any actual creative design. The designer must interview clients as well as customers and conduct testing. Also, designers must be familiar with the history of the product as well as the competition.
- Analysis – Once the information is gathered, all of this research has to be analyzed to determine how it will influence the design process. You have to look at the requirements of the product as well as the outside research that you’ve gathered and determine how these elements will fit together.
- Collaboration – A product designer must be willing to work with other people throughout the design products. Not only must you work with other designers, but materials specialists, managers, clients, customers, and the people who handle the money all have an important role to play.
- Multitasking – If all of this sounds relatively straightforward, that’s rarely the case. Multiple products can be developed at the same time, each one in a different stage of development. You might find yourself doing initial research on one product while collaborating with marketing specialists on another.
Overall, product design can be a crazy world, but it’s also one that is dedicated to creating products that clients want to sell and consumers want to buy. In the end, you make a huge impact.