Lean UX is a design process that emphasizes collaboration, iteration, and transparency. When practiced the right way, it can save a company time and money in getting products to consumers.

What Is Lean UX?

Traditional project management often calls for a linear progression that can take a long time. Lean UX allows you to streamline that process and create a good product quickly. The foundational concepts of Lean UX are collaboration and iteration. This means that the team is constantly in touch and working together and testing and improving the design throughout. Rather than a step-by-step process, Lean UX is circular and repetitive. It allows you to go from an idea to a product more quickly and with less expense.

How Does Lean UX Work?

Lean UX works through transparency and responsiveness rather than planning and procedure. It is based on making assumptions and hypotheses, designing from those assumptions, creating a minimum viable product (MVP), and testing and improving the product.

This is very different than the common design protocol often referred to as waterfall management. This type of progression calls for everything to be planned out in distinctive steps executed in consecutive order with meticulous documentation. In order for Lean UX to work, everyone on the team must be committed to working together, complete transparency, and repeated testing and tweaking of the product.

Advantages of Lean UX

The main advantages of Lean UX are flexibility, speed, and lower costs. The process allows the team to make necessary changes when they see the need, rather than waiting until the proper time in the progression. There is less emphasis on detailed documentation and that also saves time. Lean UX is less focused on creating the perfect product and more on the good enough product. This allows for a much quicker development that costs less in the long run.

Making Assumptions and Forming Hypotheses

UX & UI Design Certificate: Live & Hands-on, In NYC or Online, 0% Financing, 1-on-1 Mentoring, Free Retake, Job Prep. Named a Top Bootcamp by Forbes, Fortune, & Time Out. Noble Desktop. Learn More.

In this initial stage, the team gets together for a brainstorming session and lists assumptions based on their beliefs about users. It is understood that these assumptions might be wrong, but hypotheses are formed from the assumptions. Testing the hypotheses should determine if the assumptions were true or not.

Testing Hypotheses Through Design

In the design phase, the team works together to create the initial form of the product. It is important for the team to be in constant contact and to work collaboratively here. They can use some of the collaboration features available in design software to accomplish this. There are several products that allow teams to work together in real-time, making the process of sketching and creating wireframes much faster.

Building MVP

At this point, the team builds what is called a minimal viable product. This MVP can be a low-fidelity wireframe, a mockup with a design style, colors, and icons, or a more functional prototype, but the important thing is not that it is compete, but that it works well enough to start testing. The MVP is used to test the hypotheses developed earlier.

Analyzing Data

The data collected are used to make changes based on the reactions and feedback of the users. In this phase, the team determines if they are moving in the right direction and what changes they need to make to improve the product. Because Lean UX depends upon collaboration, iteration, and transparency, changes can be made quickly and this phase is ongoing.

Software for Lean UX

There are many digital design applications available for all parts of the design process, but these are four of the most popular. They all have the collaborative functions important for Lean UX.

Adobe XD

Adobe XD is a design tool based on vector graphics that allows you to create digital designs for everything from mobile apps to websites. XD is part of Adobe’s Creative Cloud and works well with other CC apps like Photoshop, Illustrator, and Animate. There are many repeating features that make your workflow move faster, and XD also includes collaboration features that make it easy to share and test prototypes. You can run XD on both macOS and Windows.


Sketch is a Mac application that doesn’t work on Windows. You can use vector editing tools or design at the pixel level. It allows you to scale to any screen size and speed up your workflow with mathematical shortcuts. As with XD, there are repeatable components and you can organize your design so everything is easy to find. Sketch recently added real-time collaboration, so now it is easier for a team to work together, and you can also create libraries of the elements the team is using. There are also many plugins available to customize your workspace.


InVision works to support the entire design process from brainstorming, designing, testing, collaborating, and delivering. The application includes Studio, Cloud, Freehand, Craft, and Enterprise. InVision works on both macOS and Windows.


Figma is another design application. It includes FigJam which provides an online whiteboard for collaboration to let your design team plan, define, and workshop together. You can use the pen tool for vector graphics or plugins like an instant arc design. Auto Layout moves and stretches items automatically, and Figma makes the work move along efficiently. Figma runs on a browser so it will work with macOS, Windows, or Linux systems.

Where to Learn UX Design

If you would like to learn more about UX/UI design in order to switch to a new career, one of the best ways to do that is to sign up for classes. You can choose classes that meet in-person or online to learn design software and other applications. Some people prefer to attend brick-and-mortar sessions when learning new information, but that isn’t always available. Live online classes have a similar set-up with a real-time, remote instructor who can answer questions and take control of your monitor—with permission—to show you how to do things. Training is part or full-time and available weekdays, weeknights, or weekends.

The best way to prepare for a career shift to a field like UX design is to enroll in a bootcamp or certificate program. These are intensive training courses that run from a few weeks to a few months and will cover motion graphics and animation in much more depth than tutorials can. Another plus of training is that you will leave class with a professional-quality sample video portfolio that you can show to prospective employers.

It’s easy to learn UX design and start a new career. Check out Noble Desktop’s UX design classes. Choose between in-person sessions in NYC at Noble’s location or sign up for live online UX design courses and attend from anywhere. Use Noble Desktop’s Classes Near Me to find other UX design bootcamps in your area.