Tag Archives: product

Design Job: Make a Deal! Groupon, Inc. is Seeking a Senior Manager, Product Design in Palo Alto, CA

Groupon is looking for a talented hands-on Sr. Design Manager to join our team in Palo Alto, CA, where you’ll be leading the ways our consumers buy, check out and use the deals cross platform. You have 8+ years of experience as a UX leader and amazing portfolio to back

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Design Job: Make a Deal! Groupon, Inc. is Seeking a Senior Manager, Product Design in Palo Alto, CA

Groupon is looking for a talented hands-on Sr. Design Manager to join our team in Palo Alto, CA, where you’ll be leading the ways our consumers buy, check out and use the deals cross platform. You have 8+ years of experience as a UX leader and amazing portfolio to back

View the full design job here
Core77

Design Job: Make a Deal! Groupon, Inc. is Seeking a Senior Manager, Product Design in Palo Alto, CA

Groupon is looking for a talented hands-on Sr. Design Manager to join our team in Palo Alto, CA, where you’ll be leading the ways our consumers buy, check out and use the deals cross platform. You have 8+ years of experience as a UX leader and amazing portfolio to back

View the full design job here
Core77

Design Job: Make a Deal! Groupon, Inc. is Seeking a Senior Manager, Product Design in Palo Alto, CA

Groupon is looking for a talented hands-on Sr. Design Manager to join our team in Palo Alto, CA, where you’ll be leading the ways our consumers buy, check out and use the deals cross platform. You have 8+ years of experience as a UX leader and amazing portfolio to back

View the full design job here
Core77

Design Job: Stop, Collaborate and Listen! Atlassian is Seeking a Senior Product Designer in Mountain View, CA

Atlassian and Confluence have landed in Mountain View! Join our brand new, fast-growing office in Mountain View as a product designer of one of our flagship products, Confluence. Confluence is used by more than half of Fortune 100 companies to connect people with content and co-workers they

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How Long Should New Product Development Actually Take? 

When it comes to design industry standards, there are plenty of rules left unwritten; for new graduates just starting in the corporate world, such career knowledge can feel especially foreign. This is one reason why it’s especially helpful to have a resource like the Core77 discussion boards to get in touch with designers of all ages and disciplines in order to get an experienced and well-rounded lay of the land. 

For discussion board user and new design graduate AVClub, his most pressing question at hand has to do with timelines. As the lone in-house designer at his first job since graduating, he doesn’t have a sounding board of designers to rely on so asked some Core77 discussion board experts their thoughts on the topic. AVClub writes,

“I am working my first job out of school (aside from various internships I completed while in school) at a company where I am a single internal designer, who works with a few outside designers. I really love what I am doing and have had awesome opportunities thus far and have learned a lot from the designers I work with. One thing I was curious about is if anyone would be able to share approximate times for tasks that they complete. For instance, how long do you take to sketch concepts for a product? etc. My gut tells me ‘it depends’ but my org has been inquiring so they can accurately gauge timelines with the product manager (engineering background) and sales, etc. It would be great to know generic project timelines, if you are able to share.”

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Unsurprisingly, the responses to this question were varied. Participants like Greenman noted the value of paying attention to this information and recording your own experiences over time:

“Good question, and a smart one to ask so early in your career. If you get proficient in tracking time spent, then you can better forecast how long projects will take, the more projects that you do, the more accurately you will become and estimating your time. This is valuable information to the money people and it can help you make cases for all sorts of things like faster design tools, scaling project scope, or even hiring more designers. The answer really is “it depends”, and some of the things it depends on are the type of product and the scope of the project.

If you aren’t doing so already, I would recommend that you start tracking your time for all tasks, that includes meetings and time spent on revisions and design changes.”

The one consensus seemed to be that time spent certainly depends on the scope of a project. Trusted Core77-er yo even put together a handy list of time estimates for each step in the design process:

design research: 4-5 weeks depending on complexity

research synthesis and cross disciplinary workshop: 1-2 weeks

initial concept archetype exploration with down select session: 2-3 weeks

product concept sketching: 2 weeks

concept refinement: 2 weeks

design CAD: depends on how complex and how much internals have being worked in parallel

final design model production: 4-5 weeks

design revisions and CMF: 2 weeks

design for production: this can be long depending on where engineering is in the process but ideally 3-4 weeks

design oversight of NPD: until MP1 (typically 12 months)

Obviously other things can be done in parallel. The most intense time being up front from research to CMF documentation. Call that 3-4 months.”

It’s important to keep in mind though, as rkuchinsky points out, different company operations, sizes, and philosophies can significantly affect the conventional flow of product development:

“Not only does it depend on the project, and the team/skills, it depends on the organization. I’ve worked in pretty lean organizations with a solid/experienced team and would say things got done in 50% of the time as above. As a consultant, I might do the work in 1/3 of the time.

If you track things out, you might be surprised to see how long “actual work” takes, vs. time spent talking about it, meeting about it, planning the planning process for it, tracking it, etc.

In a larger organization with a big team and management/review structure things could easily take 200%+ of the above. I recall interviewing once in a large multinational organization and presenting some work my team (of 3 including myself) had done. The interviewers commented that the work was great and asked about the other teams involved and how many years the project had taken. They were shocked when I told them that we had done everything from product planning, to design, development, marketing, packaging, etc. from initial plan to retail in a 9 month window. They told me that it would have taken them 1.5 years typically using 3-4 teams (marketing, design, development, etc.) of 5-10 people each.

We want to hear what you think—do you feel the estimates presented here are accurate? Any more tips for new designers coming into the field on how to wow clients and bosses with their designs? Comment in the thread below or on the original discussion board to get in on the conversation!


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Design Job: Become a Kid Again as Blip Toys’ Product Designer/Manager in Plymouth, MN

Blip Toys is a small fast growing manufacturer specializing in mass-market toys and sporting goods. We currently have an opening for a high energy Product Designer/ Product Manager willing to work in all aspects of the creative process. Working with our management and creative team, the candidate will help develop

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Design Job: Look Into the Future as Topology Eyewear’s Lead Product Designer in San Francisco, CA

Topology Eyewear is an early-stage fashion tech startup in San Francisco, designing and manufacturing custom eyewear. Half of the population needs eyeglasses, but it’s really difficult to find a pair that fits perfectly while still looking exactly the way you want it to. Topology’s solution is to build

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Design Job: Help Products Like the Fidget Cube Rise to Fame Through UX as Kickstarter’s Product Designer in Brooklyn, NY 

We’re seeking a top-notch product designer to work on beautiful and functional tools to help our community create, discover, explore, back, and share creative projects. You’ll collaborate with teams across Kickstarter to solve new problems, ensure a consistent user experience, and push the needle forward for creativity so Kickstarter is always engaging and inspiring.

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Design Job: Teach the Future of Product Design—Nanyang Technological University is Seeking a Faculty Member in Singapore

School of Art, Design and Media Nanyang Technological University, Singapore Faculty Position in Product Design Young and research-intensive, Nanyang Technological University (NTU Singapore) is ranked 13th globally. It is also placed 1st amongst the world’s best young universities. The School of Art, Design and Media (ADM) at NTU Singapore invites qualified academics to apply for a faculty position as either Assistant Professor or Associate Professor (tenure track).

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Design Job: Searching for a New Job Sucks! Lucky For You, Dyson is Seeking a Product Feature Designer in Malmesbury, United Kingdom

The Product Feature designer will be expected to generate new ideas for future connected products that are both product enhancing, innovative and accurately timed in the fast moving world of connected products. At Dyson we are encouraged to think differently, challenge convention and be unafraid to make mistakes. We’re creative, collaborative, practical and enthusiastic. But most of all we’re hugely passionate about what we do.

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Design Job: Get Your Career Rolling as Ricardo Beverly Hills’ VP of Design and Product Development in Kent, WA

Ricardo Beverly Hills is searching for a dynamic, seasoned leader to become its VP of Design and Product Development. This is a senior position that will play a pivotal role in designing and developing world-class products that fit the consumer lifestyle for each of our brands. We want someone who will come in with a solid reputation for building both great products in a consumer-driven organization and world-class teams.

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Design Job: Have a Passion for Plush? Build-A-Bear Workshop is Hiring a Product Designer in St. Louis, MO

Build-A-Bear Workshop, Inc. is looking for a product designer with a creative mind, an artful eye and a passion for plush. The successful designer will have design ownership of their product category(s) that includes concepting & designing bears/other plush characters and their coordinating play accessories. If you meet the qualifications

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An Honest Product Review of Those “Wrapping” Sneakers

I don’t see a lot of innovation in the footwear design space, outside of shoes targeted at athletes that boast some interesting-looking, but probably cockamamie, performance-boosting feature. So I was excited when Vibram came out with their Furoshikis, which borrowed the idea of a Japanese wrapping cloth (Westerners: Think of the bundle on the end of a cartoon hobo’s stick) and applied it to footwear.

It seemed intriguing, an outsole bonded to flexible wings that you wrap comfortably around your feet. I’d meant to pick up a pair, particularly for long airplane flights, where my feet swell and I ocould use shoes that can be made looser. But now, while researching another story, I came across one of those rare and perfect product reviews, where an objective party demonstrates the product and answers every single question I had:

Maybe this is why true footwear design innovation is so difficult. It seems that aside from some minor gripes I’ve got with ingress and egress, we’ve largely perfected the form factor, no?


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Design Job: Embrace Your Casual Side as Seaside Casual Furniture’s Product Design Engineer in Coventry, RI

Seaside Casual Furniture is seeking an exceptional talent to join our Rhode Island team to advance the design engineering process with innovation, style and a keen eye towards market trends. Our environment is creative and collaborative, fun and results driven, rewarding and challenging. The Product Design Engineer will work closely

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Why a $65 Patent Application is All You Need to License a Product Idea

When it comes to protecting your creativity, my first piece of advice is to focus on working with companies that embrace independent product developers. I wrote about which industries and what kinds of companies are most likely to embrace you here. 

Step 1: Look for Red Flags

For starters, make a habit of investigating potential licensees before submitting any of your concepts. Doing so is easy: Simply Google the company’s name and the words ‘lawsuits’ and ‘complaints.’ Are there any red flags? When you can, seek out referrals. There are thousands of companies that want to partner with you and will treat you fairly. These companies will be the easiest to work with by far, especially when it comes to negotiating a contract.

What are some other red flags you should be aware of? If a company states it only looks at patented ideas, it hasn’t truly embraced open innovation. Many companies have begun using online submission forms to better manage the ideas they receive. If you’re asked to sign something, read it very, very closely. Just because a company says it’s open to ideas doesn’t mean it’s genuinely interested in working with independent product developers. I’ve come across forms that essentially commit the signee to giving up all of their rights to their idea, which is ludicrous.

Step 2: File a Provisional Patent Application

A couple of weeks ago, I explained why I believe in the value of perceived ownership. Emphasis on perceived. The idea that you can truly own something, that it’s yours, is an illusion. The reality is most products on the market today are not patented. Because consumer products circle in and out of the market so quickly, speed to market is far more critical. And if you are copied, I say, congratulations! You’re doing something right.

Gesture-sensing hardware patent drawing filed by Apple, January 2015.

The most efficient way of establishing perceived ownership if you want to license your ideas is by filing a provisional patent application, or PPA. The United States Patent and Trademark Office introduced the option of filing a PPA in 1995 with the specific intent of providing a “lower-cost first patent filing.” Ninety-nine percent of the concepts my students license are protected with just a PPA. 

PPAs are incredibly useful. For one, they’re affordable to file — just $ 65 if you’re classified as a ‘small entity.’ More importantly, they enable you to test the market with perceived ownership. After you file a PPA, you have the ensuing 12 months to decide whether you’d like to file a non-provisional application. During that period, you’re legally able to describe your innovation as “patent pending.” If you decide to file a non-provisional application, you retain your early filing date. Which is also beneficial, because when the America Invents Act was signed into law in 2011, the United States’ system became “first-to-file,” no longer “first-to-invent.”

Note: relying on a provisional patent application to establish perceived ownership is not the right strategy for every idea. Some industries — like medical, automotive, packaging, and consumables — require patents. Patents are particularly important when dealing with Fortune 500 companies. If you want to protect a big idea, an idea you envision selling in the marketplace for many years, you’re going to need to file more than one patent to establish your ownership over it. You’ll need an entire intellectual property strategy, including multiple patents, in that case.

Step 3: Test the Market

One year is more than enough time to shop your innovation around to potential licensees, if you hit the ground running. Are they intrigued? Do you need to modify your innovation in some way? This is your opportunity to gather critical feedback about your concept. Investing too much time, energy and money into an idea before you’ve tested it doesn’t make sense. You need to know that it’s an idea companies are interested in before committing yourself to developing it any further.

* * *

A well-written provisional patent application — an application that stops workarounds and copycats — is all you need to license an idea. PPAs establish enough perceived ownership for a potential licensee to sign an agreement with you. I know because I witness it happen week in and week out.

This perspective upsets a lot of people. Patent attorneys and other professionals believe you have to own something in order to get paid for it. In my experience, that’s simply not true.

A well-written provisional patent application is all you need to license an idea.

Why are companies willing to license concepts that aren’t patented? Because of what I refer to as a “gray area.” If you decide to file a non-provisional patent application, will it issue? You don’t know. And crucially, neither do they. No one knows for sure. If your PPA is thorough and written defensively, the company in question doesn’t have very many options. It could walk away from a great idea, which doesn’t make a lot of sense. Or it could decide to go forward with just patent-pending status.

This strategy works because what’s truly important is selling, not protection.

Better still, you can and should get your licensee to pay for a non-provisional patent application to be filed in your name, because doing so benefits you both. (More on that strategy later.)

Next: How to File A PPA That Actually Has Value.


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Design Job: Drinks Are on Us! Leapfrog Product Development is Seeking an Industrial Design Intern in Chicago, IL

Leapfrog Brands is seeking a versatile industrial design intern to join their team of Industrial Designers, Engineers, and Marketers in their West Loop Chicago studio. The candidate will have opportunities to work on a variety of real-world industrial design and product development projects.

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Design Job: Fishing for a New Job? Join Orvis as the Next Product Developer for the Rod & Tackle Team in Sunderland, VT

For the past 160 years the Orvis name has stood for a passion for the outdoors, and customer satisfaction. The Rod & Tackle team is seeking a Product Developer responsible for the development, growth, and profit of key Orvis fly fishing sub categories of Waders, Wading Footwear, Outerwear and Vests/Packs.

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