Case Studies

How do you explain a process? How do you learn about your users? Here is an example from previous work involving Design Thinking. Majority of my Case Studies are client-based that can not be shared publicly. I'd be happy to share deeper experiences, if you are curious. Please inquire for my full portfolio.

Background
The scope of this project was to research, design, and build a mobile app that would give youth the confidence to ask questions, reach out to mentors, and validate their ideas and decisions. 

Why is there a need for this app? In the Entrepreneurship and Startups EdgeMakers curriculum course, we developed a project for students to create a new business, product, or idea. Feedback from our teacher's showed that student's was excited for this project but hesitated on where to start and sought validation for their ideas and how to approach the process.

We researched kids in school's, at home, with friends, family, and went back to what we lacked as kids years ago. Whenever I had an idea for a business, found a new passion whether it was photography, cooking, design, video, camping, etc, I would hold back from pursuing them because I did not know where to start. I didn't have a mentor nor know professionals in the industry to help validate my ideas and thinking. Were my ideas good enough? Were they creative enough? How do I feel more comfortable with my ideas and how do I pursue them?

As this generation of kids grow up with technology easily accessible at their fingertips, they are starting to be more comfortable sharing their voice via social media. We wanted to promote early stage thinking in any idea by providing mentors in well-respected industries to give advice and validate user thinking anonymously.

Our students are located around the world and many of them do not have access to professionals, neighbors, or mentors so we had to think of how students could access mentors without going to events or physical meet ups. To deliver on the request, we decided to create a mobile app to bridge this communication gap between users and mentors. An app is more easily accessible than accessing a computer, users can communicate faster through this medium, and can post and answer questions while on the move.

Role 
UI/UX Designer, Creative Director

Tools
Axure RP, Sketch, InVision, Photoshop, Illustrator, After Effects

Task
In order to build a safe and secure community, we understood that we are liable for youth communicating to adults. How do we build an engaging trust worthy community? Do we gamify the experience? Do we allow users to share their identities? How do we build a mobile app that promotes innovative thinking and validation and can also be used as an educational supplement?

Action
In order to do build this mobile app and create a safe community within it, a part of the UX process is to start with empathy for our users. Make every user and mentor profile anonymous by using character avatars (safety and security).Contain how users post questions/ideas (post questions with a character limit ie. Twitter and have the users create the answers – polling method).Simple function for mentors to answer questions (mentors will have many questions to answer, they do not need to explain every choice selected. Needed to create mentor feedback fast and simple). Gamify the experience - frequency of users - established a badging system. The more questions posted/answered, the more involvement receives higher XP indicating an experienced user.

Result
Once CrowdGuru launched, EdgeMakers had an increase in user adoption by 75%. Statistics showed that current students interacted with the mobile app asking questions related to their school project as well as unique users finding the app naturally through Google Play Store and the Apple App Store. Developing this mobile app also increased the appeal of the EdgeMakers curriculum package.