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  • Writer's pictureStephen Ostertag

Formative Research and Start Up Medical Device Companies: Saving you Money, Time, and Embarrassment

Updated: Aug 9

Medical device startups (or any startups) are risky endeavors. The rewards of success can be many, but the chances of failure are great. Most fail within the first few years of operation. Unfortunate, especially when avoidable.

For medical device companies, failure might arise from not adequately understating the people who will use your device. This results in confusing, poorly designed devices that do not reflect your users’ ways of thinking or understanding. What is intuitive to designers is not necessarily intuitive to your intended users. This oversight can be catastrophic. Companies waste valuable capital, time, and labor, making it harder to raise subsequent funds from investors who might no longer trust your vision or capabilities. It’s hard to recover from such a blow. Many companies never do.

How do you plan against failure? Against this common knowledge-gap that can be so devastating to your success?

A little research with your intended users in the early stages of product development can go a long way. If you want to design a product that not only works, but is actually used (and therefore purchased), then you need to understand your users, how they think about your device, about the problems they’re trying to address with your device, about their use environments and mental frameworks. This is invaluable information that informs future design iterations, ensuring your device is more user friendly and therefore used. Devices that make sense and are easy to use are the ones people want. Doctors and nurses want them in their hospital rooms and offices, patients and home health aides want them in their homes, EMTs and first responders want them in their vehicles, medical device sales reps want them in their inventory.

TIMBS Consulting will do this research for you, and we will do it quickly and within your means. We can complete most projects in three weeks. We’ll find a sample of users, investigate how they use an early prototype of your device, and get you valuable feedback that will improve your product’s usability and chances of success.

A little investment in user research up front can save you considerable headache, embarrassment, time and money.

Schedule a free consultation and learn how we can help you and your product succeed.


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