What do you mean by a 'design concept' in product management?

Learning Centre > What do you mean by a 'design concept' in product management?

A design concept is the foundation of your product - it's what everything else is built on. Here's more information on what that means and how to create one.

A design concept is the foundation of your product - it's what everything else is built on. Here's more information on what that means and how to create one.A design concept is the foundation of your product - it's what everything else is built on. Here's more information on what that means and how to create one.
Contents

Design concepts are a way to bridge the gap between an idea and a finished product. They define what you want the final product to look like, how it will work, and who your stakeholders are. In essence, they serve as a blueprint for what needs to be done next in order to turn an idea into reality.

In a company, this concept would start out as just that: an idea. In order to get from point A (initial idea) to point B (actual product), there are many steps in between that need to be completed by many different people. Design concepts nudge those people in the right direction by setting a standard for what needs to be done, as well as how it should be done.

In product management, design concepts are called that because they offer "designers" (statistically speaking, this means anyone involved in the process that isn't an engineer) their first opportunity to begin putting pen to paper.

At this stage of the game, no one knows precisely what the final product will look like or how it will work. A design concept can't be too specific, because it would render itself useless if the idea on which it's based were to change dramatically. Instead, a design concept should give general guidance for where you want to head, but be malleable enough to change as the project evolves.

At this point, it is important for all parties involved (e.g., management, investors, designers) that everyone has a single source of truth regarding what they're trying to achieve and how they plan on doing so. By defining your product's design concept upfront, you'll set the tone for all conversations that follow it and avoid confusion as to what is considered "good" or "bad".

Design concepts can take many different shapes depending on what kind of product you're trying to build. For example:

A design concept doesn't have to be limited to just visuals, either. You can also include non-visual components in your design concept, such as:

If you were to describe a design concept in layman's terms, it would probably sound something like this: "The overarching idea of what our product will look like and how it will work."

Design concepts are typically created by the people closest to the project itself, primarily managers assigned to oversee the project's various departments. Once a design concept has been established, you can begin building your final product. You'll have direction on where to go moving forward, and everyone will be on the same page.

When you have support from your company's management, it's much easier to achieve success in product development. Creating a design concept is just one of countless tasks that are required for building a solid product, but it's an essential one.

No items found.

Design concepts are a way to bridge the gap between an idea and a finished product. They define what you want the final product to look like, how it will work, and who your stakeholders are. In essence, they serve as a blueprint for what needs to be done next in order to turn an idea into reality.

In a company, this concept would start out as just that: an idea. In order to get from point A (initial idea) to point B (actual product), there are many steps in between that need to be completed by many different people. Design concepts nudge those people in the right direction by setting a standard for what needs to be done, as well as how it should be done.

In product management, design concepts are called that because they offer "designers" (statistically speaking, this means anyone involved in the process that isn't an engineer) their first opportunity to begin putting pen to paper.

At this stage of the game, no one knows precisely what the final product will look like or how it will work. A design concept can't be too specific, because it would render itself useless if the idea on which it's based were to change dramatically. Instead, a design concept should give general guidance for where you want to head, but be malleable enough to change as the project evolves.

At this point, it is important for all parties involved (e.g., management, investors, designers) that everyone has a single source of truth regarding what they're trying to achieve and how they plan on doing so. By defining your product's design concept upfront, you'll set the tone for all conversations that follow it and avoid confusion as to what is considered "good" or "bad".

Design concepts can take many different shapes depending on what kind of product you're trying to build. For example:

  • If you're an engineer working on a new hardware product, your design concept could include drawings of the device itself and the components that will be used to power it.
  • If you're a data scientist working on an AI-powered chatbot, your design concept could include how the user will interact with it (e.g., through text-based messages or voice commands) and what tasks the chatbot is able to complete.
  • If you're a marketer working on revamping your company's website, your design concept could include mood boards to better convey the website's aesthetic and user flows for navigating through sections of the site.

A design concept doesn't have to be limited to just visuals, either. You can also include non-visual components in your design concept, such as:

  • An idea for a new product type (e.g., AR glasses)
  • A list of product requirements (e.g., must be water-resistant)
  • A list of features that are non-negotiable (e.g., GPS tracking)
  • An initial estimate for what the final product will cost to produce

If you were to describe a design concept in layman's terms, it would probably sound something like this: "The overarching idea of what our product will look like and how it will work."

Design concepts are typically created by the people closest to the project itself, primarily managers assigned to oversee the project's various departments. Once a design concept has been established, you can begin building your final product. You'll have direction on where to go moving forward, and everyone will be on the same page.

When you have support from your company's management, it's much easier to achieve success in product development. Creating a design concept is just one of countless tasks that are required for building a solid product, but it's an essential one.

Key Takeways

Related Articles

Join 70+ companies accelerating their product development with Innovolo
Farm+Stable is a client of Innovolo, a product development as a service provider offering R&D teams globally extra capacity, capability, and momentum in their product development and obsolescence management projects. As a company that specializes in the development and engineering of products for the agriculture and construction industries, Farm+Stable has benefited from Innovolo's expertise in helping to bring new products to market quickly and efficiently. In particular, Farm+Stable has been able to rely on Innovolo's team of experienced engineers to help with the design and development of a new line of products that are designed to be more durable and longer-lasting than previous models. With Innovolo's help, Farm+Stable has been able to bring these new products to market in a timely manner, and they have been well-received by customers. Thanks to Innovolo's innovative product development solutions, Farm+Stable has been able to stay ahead of the competition and continue to grow their business.
Innovolo is a product development as a service provider. It offers R&D teams globally extra capacity, capability, and momentum in their product development and obsolescence management projects. Its services are used by clients in a variety of industries, including automotive, aerospace, consumer electronics, and medical devices. One of its clients is Kawneer, a leading manufacturer of aluminum products for the architectural and construction industries. Kawneer has been using Innovolo's services to help develop new products and to manage the obsolescence of its existing products. Thanks to Innovolo, Kawneer has been able to speed up its product development cycle and to reduce its costs. As a result, Kawneer has been able to bring new products to market faster and to better meet the needs of its customers.

Related Tools and Templates

No items found.

Brands Mentioned

No items found.