From an understanding to a tangible product in 5 days

As a digital native, you probably recognize the following challenge: infinite possibilities to test concepts but limitations in time and budget. Learn more about design sprints and why Xplore Group likes to use them as a solution in this blog.

Why testing innovation opportunities is important.

You can’t stay behind. You have to be innovative and therefore often focus on developing new ideas. To keep that up, we recommend using fast development methods such as design sprints.

What are design sprints?

Design sprints are used as a development method with a short lead time of only five days. In this five-part process, the transformation from question to tangible product that can be tested by users. Design sprints are a product of Google Ventures, and was developed to solve challenges with less resources. A design sprint is a combination of design, prototyping and validation.

Did you know that Airbnb, Slack and Facebook used design sprints to develop products as quickly as possible? Well, you do now.

Design sprints are powered by (digital) strategy

Mighty preparation

Before we start the design sprints, the problem must be well defined.


We do this through a customer and business analysis to discover challenges and opportunities.


These answers provide us with insights:


  • Who the target group is (size, type, characteristics).
  • How the user thinks and what problems they encounter.
  • Which steps the customer goes through and what they need.
  • What the market looks like, where opportunities and threats lie.
  • What your competitor does and where your value lies.
  • How your existing products perform.
  • Which market and technology trends apply to your company.
  • Where the current product is used. (environment, media, location, place…).
  • How the new solution could be implemented. (Skills, budget, business model, go-to market…)

Opportunities and core problems are converted into design challenges. These serve as a starting point for the design sprint and are the start of target-oriented solutions.

We develop a tangible product in 5 days.

Design Sprints from Monday to Friday


Monday: understand – ideation – brainstorm


After you have a good understanding of who your users will be, with a clear framework around the reasons why, it is easier to draw up a clear core question.


Analyzing information => derive insights à => Formulate possible questions => Specify key issue.


No ideas, no new products. This phase revolves around generating as many solutions to the problem as possible. We brainstorm to come up with outside-the-box solutions.


Important during these brainstorming sessions is the presence of creative self-confidence – participants need to feel comfortable to provide input. This brainstorm session serves to complement each other’s inspiration. We give your inspiration a boost through lightning demos and knowledge sharing from the interviews with experts.


In this phase the ruling is quantity over quality. It is important to generate as many ideas as possible, evaluation will follow later. Don’t be happy with the first best idea, maybe a better one will come a few minutes later.



Tuesday: Define


  • We decide on the solution
  • The webflow is defined
  • A storyboard gets built



Wednesday: Build

We make our ideas tangible as early as possible and test them with potential users. This gives us important feedback for the improvement ideas and prototypes. Love it, change it, or leave it.


The aim of this phase is to discover the best possible solution in an experimental way. The result is an overview of limitations of the solution and how people would react (feeling – behavior – ratio) to the solution when implemented.


During the construction of the prototype we are asked 3 questions.


  • What are the basic functions for the user?
  • What hasn’t it taken into account yet?
  • How was it never done before?



Thursday: test design with real users


You will receive valuable feedback when you test protoypes.

In user tests it is important to ask enough ‘why’ questions in order to come to thorough motivations of test results. Our primary goal in a test interview is to generate as much insight as possible.



Friday: Report


The design sprint is there to make decisions and come up with solutions in a collaborative way. From the test phase it becomes clear whether or not the solution is efficient and where it can be optimized. Findings are listed and reported to stakeholders and other parties involved.

Design thinking for communication

With design sprints, your organization can innovate and communicate in a very customer-oriented way. Design sprints are used when setting up a new business, but also to optimize an existing product. Think of webshops, applications, platforms …


Are you about to develop a new business or solution and do you need design sprints?


Yes, I need design sprints


Jelle is the ideal person when you want to take steps towards design thinking and/or need a workshop ‘design sprints’. He will be happy to answer your questions!

Author: Xplore Group, 15 dec 2020