SME campaign launched to inspire collaborations on human-centred design

A campaign has been launched to give SMEs in Greater Manchester the chance to work alongside large corporates and leading academics on how Human-Centred Design (HCD) can maximise the chances of success when bringing anything new to market.

Designing products and services so they are easy to use and perform impressively grows in importance as digital technology reaches into every aspect of our lives, which is creating a huge opportunity area for innovators and market.

The campaign, The Future of Human Experiences and Human-Centred Design (HCD), is part of Innovate Manchester, a programme created by MIDAS and GC Business Growth Hub, and produced by FutureEverything.

Tim Newns, chief executive of MIDAS

Tim Newns, chief executive of MIDAS, said: “Our programme is about inspiring collaborations that will bring forward radical new ideas and make the most of the rich diversity of design and digital expertise we have in Greater Manchester.

“We want to help companies with the HCD challenge and make sure that design is not just driven by technologists, but the experience of the people actually using the product or service.

The programme recognises the enormous impact of design in countless everyday objects and tasks. This includes improving the functionality of all forms of technology and engineering, and making sure activities as simple as walking around a supermarket or accessing government services – such as applying for a driving licence online – are not made harder by design. The project also explores how large organisations can adapt their processes and practices and potentially innovate by employing HCD.

The Future of Human Experiences and Human-Centred Design webinar takes place on February 23.

The speakers include Alex Nelson, head of design at BBC R&D Future Experiences, Dr Caroline Jay, head of research in the School of Engineering and the Digital Futures Human-Centred Design Lead at the University of Manchester, Vimla Appadoo, the co-founder and chief culture officer of Honey Badger, and Phillipa Nazari, assistant director information governance and data protection officer at the Greater Manchester Combined Authority.