This redesign process begun in 2016. Below is a detailed (and summarized) overview, step by step, of what it entailed, visually accompanied by examples of the artifacts produced.
1.Defining the Problem — Bridge2Solutions is a company operating in the domain of software as a service industry. It operates within the financial industry, but to summarize their offerings, it provides a robust platform, which allows for users and consumers of financial institutions, to redeem points for a multitude of products and services. It provides a comprehensive rewards program, allowing users and consumers to redeem points they accrue from using their credit card for an inventory of merchandise, gift cards, event tickets and travel products. When I joined this team, I was tasked with the challenge of bringing a more holistic view to the travel product, and specifically re-conceive the product in a way that would merge the needs of clients and users, but also be mindful of how travel is currently consumed (across multiple platforms, devices and ultimately experiences), and how that married the business goals for the company. In order to do so, I established a process of first meeting with different team members, namely stakeholders, product owners, project managers, development teams, helpdesk teams, and in parallel run a few observation exercises (or workshops) to understand and gather information on how users were digesting the product currently in existence. I also gathered information in terms of analytics from Business Analysts, in order to gain further insight and detail into how the flow was behaving, in terms of time spent on each page, areas of focus, and potential downfalls on particular pages, particularly when the user was trying to make a purchase. These observations also allowed me to verify the technical aspects of the product, namely its responsiveness, as well as understanding other variables, such as co-branding, theming and localization (the product is indeed a white label type of product, which allows for clients to control to a certain extent the UI, and the functionality that it exhibits). (Illustrate this section with the images from google analytics, images from the old UI).
2.Research — The research process was established on three tiers. The first focused on understanding how different financial institutions were using different products for their rewards solutions. That included research on competitive products, and their integration with partners and types of information and catalogues being retrieved. The second tier of research focused specifically on travel. Understand the products available on the market, where most users consume travel, but also and equally important, products on the market that disrupt how people consume travel products, and make their travel plans and bookings. And a third tier, focused on best processes, practices for robust e-commerce experiences, focused on products of different types and natures. Understanding flows, and best practices that contemplate diverse factors such as micro-animations, ADA compliance, and cross platform functionality. A lot of this information was compiled in tools such as Invision’s boards, which allowed for easy sharing among team members and different teams. (Get images from the research of different rewards programs, different travel products, best practices when it comes to checkout flows for instance).
3.Characters — Understanding the product, implicated obviously understanding whom are we building the product for. That implied the creation of characters, not just personas. Actually build characters with motivations, thought processes behind the utilization of such a product, leveraging data on the demographics of who’s actually using the products. This component also implied defining user journeys, which accounted for the situations prior to users coming to the product, during the actual purchase experience, and after the purchase experience — defining the ecosystem that pertains to the whole lifecycle of an actual purchase and points redemption experience. This also allowed for the definition of stories and goals for products/features, that could be documented in different tools, such as Atlassian’s Trello and Jira. (Illustrate this section with images from the characters deck, alongside Trello).
4.Workshops — Workshop initiatives were tremendously important in this process. They served multiple purposes, with different artifacts being produced from each of these. Ideation Workshops were focused on understanding new ideas, and how they could become features or new products. This involved sketching exercises and quick prototypes just for further definition and feedback. Feature Workshops, which were focused on interactive flows further defined, and how they impacted the product experience. These traditionally were produced with different sets of prototypes for gathering of feedback from sample groups (through scripted processes and surveys). Design Review Workshops, which focused on discussions of general UI directions, with focus on a trifecta of elements that were crucial for the product, namely ADA compliance, localization and of course, mobile responsiveness. (Illustrate this component with micrograms, principle prototypes and sketches).
5.Iterations & UI — Part of the definition of a successful product experience, involves the building of an interface that contemplates all the factors that were defined previously in the process. For that matter, this is an iterative process, where different concepts were worked on, prototyped, tested and refined. In parallel with the definition of the UI, interactive patterns, there was also the building of a product guideline, defining the core modular components of the Interface, but also of all that pertains to how theming operates and is built (and how it potentiates different brands to capitalize on a flexible product such as this). (Illustrate this section with the UI, including desktop, mobile, emails, theming micro project, localization, theming options).
6.Development, Q&A, Measuring Impact — A successful design process bleeds into a tight collaboration with development. After establishing, testing, and production of assets, the process tied perfectly with the Agile process in place, allowing for two week sprints, with enough feedback to constantly update and improve on what was being delivered. The immediate results were and have been felt and noticed — positive client auscultation, getting new clients, and generally improving brand awareness and successful conversions. (Illustrate this section with a prototype of a flow in Marvel).