Phase 1:

Program Design

Good design is grounded in understanding your business goals as well as your user’s needs. We ask the right questions to get to the bottom of both and help you create specific concrete product requirements. If needed, we take on the Product Manager role.

Typical Deliverables
  • Design framework
  • Requirements definition
  • Program Design which details project strategy

Our Secret Sauce

Needfinding

Needfinding is the foundation of our whole design thinking process. We interview and observe your customers in context to frame the problem we are going to solve by uncovering their true needs. Our findings will challenge your assumptions and requirements, and ensure that we are solving for the right thing.

Phase 2:

Interaction Design + Testing

We create the whole user experience. As part of our process, we create an interactive prototype and do Fast Insight testing with users so we can quickly and easily collect feedback and make changes.

Typical Deliverables
  • Sketches
  • Interactive wireframes
  • Interaction design specification notes

Our Secret Sauce

Interactive
Wireframes

We use real working HTML Wireframes to help everyone see for themselves how the product will actually work. It leads to faster, better design, and hardly anyone gets hurt in the process.

Fast Insight™
Testing

Why would you wait until a design is done to test it? We’ve developed an innovative technique for collecting user feedback every step of the way. It’s so quick, easy, and flexible, there’s really no down side.

Phase 3:

Visual Design

The icing on the cake. We work closely with you to understand your branding and corporate identity requirements, as well as any expectations you have for the look and feel of your product. Then we explore one or more custom styles and fine-tune the visuals to create a masterpiece that brings the wireframes to life and makes your users drool.

Typical Deliverables
  • Layered, editable, Photoshop files
  • Visual design specification
  • Final front end CSS on request

Our Secret Sauce

Metaphors

Should your product resemble Marlon Brando in the Godfather or a beautiful day in the neighborhood with Mr. Rogers? We employ metaphors to create experiences using colors, icons, and typography.

Ready to work together?

get in touch

faqs.

General

  • What sets you apart from other user experience design agencies?

    We are a clever, boutique design agency that specializes in creating awesome user experiences for complex problems at work and at home. Every designer on our team is smart enough to understand your problem and talented enough to design the right solution which users will fall in love with. Our secret sauce is a deeply held belief in thoroughly following the Design Thinking process, customized for the unique needs of app design. We combine user research with rapid interactive prototyping and technology expertise -- unicorn skills that everyone on our team is blessed with. You’ll get personal attention, spectacular designs, and have a blast along the way.

  • How would you describe the ideal Sliced Bread Design client?

    The ideal client is interested in creating the best user experience for the end user. They are willing to back away from ideas that don’t appeal to their users and to consider features, interactions, and a visual design language that are useful, useable, and meaningful to the target audience. They have empathy for their customers and love solving their real problems. They are creative, collaborative, and open to new ways of thinking and doing.

  • Do you work on enterprise and consumer projects?

    Yep, we design user experiences for any technology application in the enterprise and consumer spaces for web, mobile, and desktop platforms. We apply the same proven design process and principles to all projects, regardless of the target user, platform or device.

  • How do you charge?

    We charge by the hour or by the project, after giving an estimate of the total project cost based on the project scope. A typical project costs between $80k and $150k, and our minimum project cost is $40k.

  • What’s the next step if we might be interested in working together?

    Please contact Julie Stanford if you are interested in learning more about Sliced Bread or the potential to work together.

Working With Our Team

  • What’s the makeup of your team?

    Our team is made up of all senior UX and Visual Designers, most of whom attended Stanford University, with representation from Harvard and MIT as well. Sliced Bread folks have backgrounds in User Experience and Interaction Design, Symbolic Systems, Communication, Computer Science, Cognitive Psychology, Economics, and Engineering.

  • How will we interact with your team when we’re working together?

    Each project has a Project Lead who is the point person for all communication about the project, timeline and deliverables. The lead is always a Senior UX Designer who does design work in addition to client communication, as we know that a lot of design happens in collaborative meetings rather than at a desk in the office. This hands-on involvement is also key when there's a lot of complexity and detail that is communicated and updated in an agile way. Depending on the project scope and scheduling, there may also be additional Senior UX Designers. During the visual design phase, the lead will involve one of our Visual Designers to work on the look and feel, but will continue being the primary communicator. Also, every project is assigned a Creative Director who helps create the project strategy and works closely with the UX Designers throughout to ensure that all Sliced Bread work is of consistently high quality. Communication typically occurs several times per week, in the form of email, phone calls, and in-person meetings.

  • How do you work with internal teams?

    In many cases, especially with startups, we work very closely with internal design and product groups as extended members of the team, splitting design deliverables and helping influence strategy and product decisions, in addition to classic UX work. We'll come onsite as often as needed to have meetings and collaborate on ideas -- but we don't work onsite full time since we like to incorporate the best thinking of not just your team, but the whole Sliced Bread posse. We're happy to team up with internal visual designers who skin our wireframes and particularly love to include engineers in user research and design review meetings. We don't claim to have a monopoly on good ideas so we enjoy working collaboratively.

Typical Projects & Our Process

  • How long are your typical projects?

    Our projects vary in length depending on the client’s schedule. An average project lasts three months.

  • What are the typical deliverables?

    At the beginning of a project, we will conduct user research and stakeholder interviews to determine areas of focus for product improvements and/or prioritization for an initial set of features. We'll also read any docs, past studies, roadmaps, etc. that we can get our hands on to understand what you've done to date and what your plans are, and to learn much as possible about your target user, business and technology. The first deliverable will be a Program Design document with details on our findings, insights into user needs, and targeted recommendations on approaching the design challenge. Throughout the design process, typical deliverables will be concept sketches and interactive HTML wireframes that communicate different potential designs. The final interaction design deliverable will be a user-tested, interactive HTML prototype of your product created with integrated specification notes. For visual design, our final deliverables vary from layered PSD files to comprehensive visual style guides to final CSS, depending on your engineering needs. The only thing we don't do is backend coding and integration.

  • Do we need to engage you for your whole process, or can we do just a part of it?

    Clients tell us it's very effective to have us involved in the entire process in order to learn everything we can about the technology, business needs, target user, and market requirements. However, we can come in at any time during the product development process and work with you to figure out what's most effective at that time. When we come in, the most important thing is that we are able to talk to you and your users so that we can understand the problem we’re trying to solve from both perspectives and can come up with the best solution possible.

  • Do you do front end implementation, like HTML and CSS?

    We can deliver CSS or final front-end HTML code depending on the needs of the project, but don't ever work on back-end implementation. Typically, however, we happily work with your front-end development team to ensure the final product is as close to the intended, successfully tested design as possible, rather than throwing our designs over the wall and wishing you luck as we run out the door.

  • What don’t you do?

    We don’t do back-end development. We also don’t use paper towels unless we discover a hidden roll somewhere.