What is assumption mapping?
During an exercise called assumptions mapping, a team examines any assumptions they may have on the viability, feasibility, and desirability of a new product or service. Each assumption is then listed in order of importance and potential danger.
Desirability – This type of inference focuses on the subject and the customer. It aims to give users an idea of how the product will be perceived by customers. “Do users need it?” seeks an answer to the question.
Viability– With these assumptions, the focus is on finding out if a project or product is worthwhile. Applicability assumptions focus on sustainability of the business model.
Feasibility – Helps you decide what you can successfully extract with the resources you have.
It is very important to plan Desirability, Feasibility and Feasibility together because not having even one brings failure.
Why assumption mapping is important?
Assumptions are frequently the basis for product decisions, and by mapping them, teams can more clearly identify the areas that require additional experimentation or development. As a result, assumptions might be dangerous if not properly considered and even expensive if they turn out to be untrue or untrue. Because of this, assumption mapping is a crucial stage of the product development process.
A cross-functional team can find dangerous assumptions that can fail by using assumption mapping.
A dangerous project or product’s assumptions can be found via an assumption map. The map promotes the creation of better products by evaluating the risks connected to each assumption made.
Simple steps for assumption mapping
- Based on the extent to which the product meets the intended need and what the feedback is to competing products, etc., some assumptions can be made. Verbalizing these assumptions through assumption mapping can cause you and your team to rethink, try or research them, which can lead to a better product.
- After you mapped the assumption, you learned that one assumption you trusted the least was wrong. At this point, you must decide whether it would be a waste of money to replace or would it cost too much to change. Determine which will have the greatest impact on your product or organization.
- Consider the smallest tests you can do to answer your riskiest assumptions. For example, how can a study be conducted to better understand user goals? Or what can be done to reduce the risk? This is where your team should spend most of their time before continuing to develop your custom software.
How to get started with Assumption Mapping?
Ask yourself, your team, or your stakeholders, “What assumptions am I making?” ask. This is the first step in designing a human-centered and quality product.
Everything you map before you start mapping should be closely linked to what you know today, and you need to have strong ideas and free up space to make room for new information.
We know how difficult it is to identify and question your assumptions during the pre-development phase of software planning. There are tools developed for this, and these tools give us a way to make informed decisions.
Validating assumptions with assumptions mapping?
You may not have enough evidence to show that the assumptions are true, and your assumption may not even be true, but the feeling that it is true is enough to put it on your agenda. It should guide product development decisions to get you to the validation stage.
Three steps are involved in the process of validating assumptions:
– Holding a workshop on assumptions mapping
– Filling out an Assumptions Map
– Making assumptions-based qualitative research questions
Holding a workshop on assumptions mapping
This comprises significant figures or stakeholders who can offer helpful hypotheses. These individuals will make various assumptions and explain them. During the workshop, the assumptions that the stakeholders might come up with are noted and then the reasons behind the assumptions they make are looked at.
Filling out an Assumptions Map
After everyone has explained their assumptions, a group discussion should take place.
When formulating assumptions, their accuracy and possible impact on the success of a product are considered.
You can then develop qualitative research questions based on what you know once you’ve evaluated their riskiness and ease of validation. To determine the validity of these hypotheses, test them with individuals, such as through conducting interviews.
Making assumptions-based qualitative research questions
After completing the first two steps, you can now create a hypothetical map. Assumption Maps can take different forms. Categories are subjective and an assumption can be placed in multiple different quadrants.