Design Thinking for Teams: Positioning Matrix

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As you know, our blog brings useful information to those who want to implement Design Thinking in business. This is why we periodically talk about tools for all stages of DT.

We have already introduced a series of tools for the ideation stage, such as Brainstorming and Co-Creation Workshops. In order to be able to evaluate these ideas we use the Positioning Matrix, which you will learn about in this post.

We will show you some practical examples of the use of this tool on teams that need to analyze ideas generated to solve a specific challenge.

What is the Positioning Matrix?

It’s a tool that enables the strategic analysis of the ideas generated, using the validation of these ideas in relation to the guiding criteria, as well as to the needs of the Personas created in the project. The goal of this tool is to support the decision-making process, through the efficient communication of the benefits and challenges of each solution, so that the more strategic ideas are selected and prototyped.

When should a Matrix be created?

In meetings between the project team and the clients, as support material for the evaluation of ideas, and when deciding on the next steps. This is how it’s done:

– The ideas generated in the project are listed. These may be grouped by similarity or, in the case of too large a volume, from a previous selection.

– Next, the guiding criteria and/or Personas created throughout the project are listed in the opposing axis to form a matrix, which is then collaboratively filled, assessing how each idea meets each requirement.



Check out two practical examples of the application of this tool for a better hierarchy of the generated ideas:

#1 Selecting insurance ideas for commercialization via cell phones.

In the context of creating types of micro insurance policies to be commercialized via mobile phones, the six final ideas, which were refined after the Co-Creation Workshop with the clients’ employees, were cross- checked with the Guiding Criteria, generating a score of adherence to the scope and to the Personas.

Why do we create the Matrix

It enables you to assess the acceptance amongst the service’s target-audience, assisting in the decision-making process to select the most suitable ideas to be implemented.

A positioning Matrix is a Design tool that helps reflect and choose the most suitable ideas for the challenge at hand.

#2 Analyzing ideas for innovation in ATMs

Throughout a project to innovate ATMs, large areas of opportunities were identified, via the analysis of Desk and In-Depth Research, which generated ideas. With this, an analysis that identified some evaluation criteria was necessary. These are:

1. The area of opportunity in which the idea is. In other words, was it related to education, gamification, personalization or others;

2. In which type of interface (special, object, and digital) would the idea fit;

3. The level of incidence of the idea’s topic in the stories collected in the field research, in other words, its adherence to the user context;

4. In which degree of innovation for the market did the idea fall into.

These criteria were positioned in lines within a matrix and crossed with the ideas so as to assess them. The result was used as basis for the formulation of recommendations that guided its implementation.

Amongst the recommended ideas there were also those who were classified as worthy of priority implementation, due to the clear identification of the potential returns to the bank on several aspects, especially when it enables a large exposure to the market due to its level of innovation.

Matrix: Return x Innovation

From the analysis of all the ideas generated, those more highly recommended were inserted in a second matrix, guided by the following axis:

Degree of innovation and level of returns. The horizontal axis, or degree of innovation, was created from the indicators identified throughout the project:

– The “Essentials” are the functionalities that are already offered by the competition or that fit into very present trends according to market analysis.

– The “desirable” classification was applied to the ideas that showed a high level of demand by the users during the field research.

– The ideas that follow new trends, from other segments, that the market is still not exploring, were considered “outside the box” for being genuine innovations, that have a large potential for generating an impact in the bank’s brand at the time of its implementation.

– In the level of returns axis, the quantification was assessed based on the level of occurrences of the following return criteria within each idea: “shortens queues at ATMs”, “shortens queues at the cashiers”, “charms the client”, “makes ATMs easier to use”, “reduces the feeling of insecurity”, “generates value for the brand”, “reduces complaints”, “reduces costs with corrections and mistakes”, “reduces operational costs”.


The aforementioned matrix fulfilled its objective of facilitating the visualization of the recommended ideas, focusing on the level of returns and degree of innovation each one had, and assisting in the selection of the ideas to be implemented.

What about you? Can you see how the Positioning Matrix can help your team in a project context?

ToolKit DT

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