Throughout the past half-century, The Information Age has introduced a fundamental shift in how societies measure and produce value. Increasingly, the global economy assigns value based on an entity's ability to generate, harvest, and leverage data.
In 2021, the most innovative organizations are those that prioritize data insights in their decision-making processes. Data-savvy companies are constantly challenging their more traditional competitors. Amazon, for example, famously innovates through constant experimentation—rapidly leveraging its successes to invest in experimental new concepts. Most of these experiments fail, and a few of them succeed. Crucially, Amazon gathers priceless data from every experiment to help it make increasingly well-informed bets.
Modern digital product design has evolved from 20th-century graphic design to meet this global information revolution's demands. Unsurprisingly, digital solutions are at their best when informed by data gathered during the design process.
Product designers often group data into two categories—qualitative and quantitative. Designers seek both to craft effective digital solutions. Qualitative data pertains to qualities or characteristics—it is often considered to be more subjective. Quantitative data pertains to measurable numbers and is more objective and scientific.
Regardless of your industry, gathering more data to inform your decisions can strengthen your work. The next time you start a new project, seek out examples of qualitative and quantitative research techniques to assist you in gathering that data. Employ those methods where they make sense for your business, and in time you'll find yourself making more well-informed decisions. For more on this topic, be sure to subscribe—future editions will dig further into research. Happy venturing!
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