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Discuss About The Proceedings Of The Human Factors And Ergonomics.

Benefits of Personas

The design of medical devices has always been a challenging aspect for the healthcare manufacturer. The industry is such that it requires perfection and quality in all of its design. There is a little scope for error as it deals with the human life. Hence errors in the device is not at all acceptable. Hence developing the design in complete isolation was never an ideal option. So there was an obvious need for the design to consider the human aspect in the design process (Miaskiewicz and Kozar 2015). This set the basis for the introduction of the personas in the medical device design. Although it was not the first industry to introduce the concept. The software design was the first sector to explore the idea of the personas.

Personas are the conceptualization of the actual users. In order to incorporate the human factor into the design, it is not possible to involve the user directly. Hence an abstraction is required (Blomquist and Arvola 2014). This gives designer the felling of what it will be like while the actual users are doing the interaction with the devices. It is basically an effective approach for the personification of the real user through model and conceptualization.

The purpose of the report is to introduce the concept of the personas in field of medical research, specifically the manufacturing of the medical devices. The report also aims to introduce the benefits and drawbacks of the concept. The report also seeks to make the users aware of the relevant research already taken in this filed so that the report creates a solid background to discuss the challenges the researchers have encountered and what possible challenges the designer is likely to face when the project will starts. The report seeks to formulate the effective recommendation based on the challenges identified in the previous research.

The design of the product is not all about the technology and the designing method put together. It is also about the way the designer connects with the system. It is very much important for the designer to connect with the system. Otherwise it is not possible to create system that will make the user connect with the system as well. Now it is not possible to create such design based on pen and paper. There should be some reference which will help the designer too make abstraction of human perception about the product. Now there might be several alternative for that. However the best option is to create something that relates as close as possible to the real users (Long 2015). Hence Personas is the best option that the designer can chose from. It creates an effective model which has the ability to create the perception of the human interaction and thus it works well when there is a need for putting the human element into the design (Hartson and Pyla 2012). Now as the personas have the ability to create abstraction that is the closet to the actual scenario, personas are a great way to test the effectiveness of the design without interacting with the actual users.

Drawbacks of Personas

One of the major requirement of the user interface designer is to effectively communicate the features of the system to the users without involving the internal working principle communicated to the user of the system. Hence there have to be perfect synchronization between the design model and the user’s model. The design model is the conceptualization that the designer makes before the design takes place and the use model is the conceptualized yet to be completed model that is the explanation of the system function. Now there should be match between this two to make the design effective (Nielson 2017). Personas helps to create perfect match between this two and provides the designer an excellent way to include the user perspective from the user point of view into the design. Hence designers use the personas for the design, especially when the design or the product must meet the user expectation and more importantly the user requirement.

Personas also allows to create communication between the interdisciplinary teams involved in the design which in turns helps to support the “organisation wide design input” and allowing the mixed teams to work together and synchronizing the ideas that are put forward by different teams (Markiewicz,  Van Til and IJzerman 2014).

Although personas are great way to infuse human element into design and provides an excellent means to think from the user perspective. However there are some issues with the approach as well. These issues are also need to be explored and assessed before the approach is put into practise. It is also very much important. Researches argues that the personas have no scientific basis (Pruitt and Grudin 2015). The reason behind it is that personas are not real, they are fictional and hence does not have any reference to the real scientifically validated data

Some researches is doubtful about the practical implication of the concept. According to them, there is no way to get reliable work from the specific personas to given data. This is because there is no option to empirically validate the data set with empirical research, does providing no solid framework to implement the concept practically. Some organizations are not even comfortable to work with the idea or the methodology (Vincent, Li and Blandford 2014). In those cases the organization prefers to create hypothetical users and assign name real names. This creates confusion about the validity of the methods to the designing team which has the potential to create mismatch between the scope and the actual design, making the approach ineffective for practical purpose and design implementation.

Challenges

Some researchers have already implemented the process into the design of the infusion pump. The team have pointed out some of the major issues and challenges while implementing the design. According to the researchers the personas have the potential for providing a broad range of representation that is required for representing the requirements for design, however the major challenge they have faced is how to map the representation created with just one personas to the system that need to consider several users. Hence the topic of perfect integration is a major challenge for design with the personas. However the researches have admitted that lack of proper research before the design was one of the reasons for the issue (Vincent and Blandford 2014). The problem of proper research was that the no available standard was available for doing such research in this topic. Hence there was a problem for creating design and then integrate it with the system with real users. The researchers also indicated that previous research done in this direction has not received major support from the healthcare industries and hence there was lack of proper standardization for the technology related to the healthcare. However, this situation according to the researchers need to be improved through proper researches and standardization (Vincent 2017).

From the previous section it is clear that there are several benefits of using the personas in the design of medical devices. However there are challenges and issues for using the concept as well. Hence there might be confusion whether to use it or not. The decision is critical as the concept have to be applied for designing medical devices where accuracy plays a crucial role. Hence there is no chance of applying trial and error. The design needs to be executed with perfection. With reference to that the answer to the question whether to use the personas for the design or not, the answer is yes as the benefits over performs the drawbacks. However there are some points recommended in this context to make the incorporation of the concept into the design and execute it successfully. The recommendations will help to make the design effective while addressing the challenges and issues.

One of the major issues is that if all the members in the team is not well aware or supportive to the concept the design will be hampered. Although it might not seem significant but it is the one of the primary issues that the designing team face. If the team members does not have firm belief that personas create effective abstraction with which proper design can be made the design will never be perfect as the concept is to connect with the user through abstraction. Hence if the confidence is not there, the designers will not be perfect in the design process. Hence it is recommended to understand the thought process of the designers and find out where and exactly why they are finding it difficult to connect with the concept. A proper communication between the team members and within different teams are necessary for better design.

Recommendation

The challenges that the previous researchers have found is the lack of research in this field. The previous researches have commented that the lack of research is a problem when trying to apply the personas in the design of the medical device, hence it is recommended to create proper research in this domain before applying the concept. The research should be specific in understanding the features and the need of the uses while using the device. This will help the designer to execute the design in an organised direction. Thus providing a robust framework to carry out the design.

Experience is another important aspect to consider while considering strategy for dealing with the issues with the approach. Hence having an experienced team or having anyone in the team as team leader who has previous experience of working in this field is an added advantage for the team as well for the team members. So hiring an experienced team or appointing some experienced one as the team leader is a recommended step to follow for the organization.

Conclusion

The paper after discussing all the points such as benefits, issues and challenges, concludes that the personas are great way to include the human aspect in the design without even interacting with the user. It provides a great way to create conceptualizations and abstraction to understand the interaction of user with the system and thus provides a great option to understand the system from the user point of view and perform modification to make the design and the product compatible with the need of the user. However there are some issues with the approach as well which must be addressed as well. The issues should be solved with proper strategy so that the concept can be applied while ensuring the maximum benefit from the approach. One of the issues that is important to notice is the trust issues. Designers as often is not confident in the process, the design is likely to hamper as it is about the conceptualization through models and abstraction. Hence designers need to be confident in the approach. Another thing that needs to be does is to conduct proper research before the design takes place. It will give a thorough idea of what to expect from the system and what the user wants out of the system. Having proper research for that will help to make proper connection between these two. It is true that incorporating personas into design principle is challenging and the challenge is more when applying it in the medical device design where scope of error is not at all acceptable. However, if proper strategies are followed, it is an excellent concept for design, especially design that seeks to assess the system in terms of user experience even before the system is used by the users. However, the concept of personas in medical device design is yet to be matured and lot of research is yet to be done in this direction for perfection and improvement and effectiveness.

References:

Miaskiewicz, T. and Kozar, K.A., 2015. Personas and user-centered design: How can personas benefit product design processes?. Design Studies, 32(5), pp.417-430.

Nielsen, L., 2017. Personas-user focused design (Vol. 15). Springer Science & Business Media.

Vincent, C.J., Li, Y. and Blandford, A., 2014. Integration of human factors and ergonomics during medical device design and development: It's all about communication. Applied ergonomics, 45(3), pp.413-419.

Vincent, C.J. and Blandford, A., 2014. The challenges of delivering validated personas for medical equipment design. Applied ergonomics, 45(4), pp.1097-1105.

Markiewicz, K., Van Til, J.A. and IJzerman, M.J., 2014. Medical devices early assessment methods: systematic literature review. International journal of technology assessment in health care, 30(2), pp.137-146.

Hartson, R. and Pyla, P.S., 2012. The UX Book: Process and guidelines for ensuring a quality user experience. Elsevier.

Blomquist, Å. and Arvola, M., 2014, October. Personas in action: ethnography in an interaction design team. In Proceedings of the second Nordic conference on Human-computer interaction (pp. 197-200). ACM.

Long, F., 2015, May. Real or imaginary: The effectiveness of using personas in product design. In Proceedings of the Irish Ergonomics Society Annual Conference (Vol. 14). Irish Ergonomics Society.

Pruitt, J. and Grudin, J., 2015, June. Personas: practice and theory. In Proceedings of the 2003 conference on Designing for user experiences (pp. 1-15). ACM.

Vincent, C. , 2017, September. Designing for safety and usability: User-centered techniques in medical device design practice. In Proceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Annual Meeting (Vol. 55, No. 1, pp. 793-797). Sage CA: Los Angeles, CA: SAGE Publications.

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My Assignment Help. (2019). Introducing Personas In Medical Device Design - Benefits, Drawbacks, Challenges And Recommendations. Retrieved from https://myassignmenthelp.com/free-samples/proceedings-of-the-human-factors-ergonomics.

"Introducing Personas In Medical Device Design - Benefits, Drawbacks, Challenges And Recommendations." My Assignment Help, 2019, https://myassignmenthelp.com/free-samples/proceedings-of-the-human-factors-ergonomics.

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My Assignment Help. 'Introducing Personas In Medical Device Design - Benefits, Drawbacks, Challenges And Recommendations' (My Assignment Help, 2019) <https://myassignmenthelp.com/free-samples/proceedings-of-the-human-factors-ergonomics> accessed 19 July 2024.

My Assignment Help. Introducing Personas In Medical Device Design - Benefits, Drawbacks, Challenges And Recommendations [Internet]. My Assignment Help. 2019 [cited 19 July 2024]. Available from: https://myassignmenthelp.com/free-samples/proceedings-of-the-human-factors-ergonomics.

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