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Johnson & Johnson

Designing a Low-Cost Knee System

2012  |  Lead Designer

The Reach Project was a low-cost total knee replacement system focused on emerging markets and was developed out of our Suzhou, China facility.

The challenge was solving use errors, reducing risks, and optimizing human factors and design attributes while working with a diverse and global team.

Business Objective

Incorporate the new Attune visual design language while meeting the project's cost target.

Design Objective

Provide a range of design and usability recommendations that align with the project's constraints.


Our design focus had been strictly on the Attune: Primary Total Knee Replacement System, which had a sizable investment, great resources, and a development team located locally.

The challenge was now to take our new design strategy and scale it down to our Reach Project - a low-cost primary knee replacement system developed for our emerging market geography. It was overall a low-funded and under-resourced project out of our Suzhou facility in China.

My responsibility was to scale our visual design language and offer solutions based on a prioritization of features as well as provide general cost implications of different machining and manufacturing processes.

By pitching this scaled approach, the company was able to better understand the trade-offs between cost and design and focus on features that were critical to improving the usability of the instrumentation.

This project required both design and business leadership in order to understand the priorities and risks of the project.

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