The Ironhack 9-week bootcamp was a very intense and busy period where I learn a lot about design, process and also, myself. And the best part is that I still have a lot to learn. I’m very optimistic and eager to take the next step!
In this project, I had the pleasure of working with Alejandra Rivera, a designer, and friend that I admire. I feel lucky to have shared these two weeks with her.
Briefing & Challenge
The client: Interactius
Interactius is a strategic design agency based in Barcelona that analyzes, diagnoses and optimizes the customer experience of different digital services and products.
In order to deliver a better customer experience, Interactius, as any UX company, needs to recruit users to test those products and learn from it. Since this process is currently done by external companies, the whole experience is inefficient and unprofessional.
Interactius asked us to create an MVP for an online application for recruiting users.
Two-week sprint using Design Thinking process to deliver an MVP of a new recruiting platform.
Learning the recruitment process on Interactius
We interviewed the Interactius team — Carlos Ruiz (co-founder), Tomás Modroño and Oriol Quílez (UX designers) — with the goal to understand how the recruiting process currently happens and their needs. By the end of the interview, we were able to create a journey to have a better understanding of the steps to recruit a user and their pain points.
The journey is quite simple and the main problem is that the only touch-point between Interactius and the user is on the day of the test. There’s no communication before — everything is managed by the external recruiting company.
We also learned that Interactius doesn’t want to work with recurring test participants. Some people take several tests and consider it a job. Users who are already used to testing and interviewing eventually deliver distorted results compared to an average user.
The irony: A recruiting problem inside our project
Yeah, we are trying to help a UX company to reach users and in this project, we couldn’t find users that already had participated in user research to conduct interviews.
We delve into articles and user reviews on similar services to learn about people’s experience in user research projects. Here are the most important findings:
The motivation that most influences participation in research is the economic incentive.
Gift cards are the incentives that work best to ensure the attendance of people. They adapt to any audience and respond to the rise of electronic commerce.
Transparency about the process and information about the recruitment makes people more confident to participate in the research and act responsibly.
People get frustrated when they are not qualified to participate in research. People don’t want to give information for free and they want to be informed about the process upfront.
Learning from others
We did a benchmarking to learn how different recruitment and online testing companies carry out their recruitment process, from the point of view of the user and the company.
The main variables to be taken into account were those defined by Interactius in the brief: recruitment, scheduling, and contact.
After analyzing the data from our research, we had a clear view of the problem:
Interactius needs to manage the process of recruiting users for research purposes autonomously and efficiently, while the user needs clear and precise information about the project in which he participates since currently the process for both parties is fragmented and generates tension, uncertainty and an unprofessional result.
We proposed the following solution to the problem:
An online platform that acts as a connector between Interactius and the participating users of a research project, through an autonomous, efficient and precise recruitment process that allows them to have control over all phases of the process.
Creating a solution for both sides: The UX consultant working at Interactius and the participant.
At this point, we started to ideate the solution. We used Jobs to be done to discuss, organize and evaluate what we should have on the MVP.
The user flow allowed us to design how both users will interact with the platform and understand when the system had to send notifications. The image below is the “happy flow” for the MVP.
Our creative concept: The bridge
A bridge is built to provide passage over an obstacle, it connects two sides — as we want to connect with our solution.
With that idea, we got inspired to create the name and logo of our solution. We wanted to deliver a unique name that had a connection with our client. So we used a word in Catalan to bring this special touch that you can only find here in Cataluña:
The logo represents a connection between 2 points while the bridge also has a form of a U. Our goal was to convey clarity in a friendly and approachable manner.
High fidelity prototypes
Since we have two different users on our platform, we created 2 high fidelity prototypes. Here I will highlight the most important steps of each journey.
1. The research participant (user)
This is a common person that is interested in participating in future research projects. Their first step is to create an account filling the basic information. Thru our research and tests, we learned that we had to:
- Show the benefit they might receive in participating in future research projects;
- Explain how does the process to participate works;
- Create a registration form with minimal information in a clear and easy way.
After being registered on the platform, the next step for the user happens when new research is published. The user will receive an email invitation with information about the research to be performed. The user will have to answer some screener questions — previously defined by Interactius — so only people with the specific characteristics needed for this search can schedule to participate in the research.
The last step of the process happens after the user has done the research. The user will receive a notification email with a link to get the Amazon gift card so they can enjoy the prize for participating in the research.
2. The UX consultant at Interactius (client)
Their first step is to create a new research recruitment project. Thru our research, we learned that we had to:
- Define the audience based on data provided by user registration;
- Create screener questions to find specific users (variable data that depends on each project).
After the research recruitment project is created, the next step for the UX consultant at Interactius is to manage this project. To do this, we created a calendar that shows the test slots and which users have already scheduled their participation in the research.
By clicking in one slot that is already scheduled by a user, the UX consultant can see the user information and manage their participation. After running the test, the UX consultant can deliver the Amazon gift card for the user.
Prototype and Testing
Here I’ll gather the most important learnings we had in testing the prototypes.
User/Participant registration form
Our first low-fidelity prototype for the registration form we learned that asking the user what smartphone device they have would create inaccurate data over time since users will change their smartphones sooner or later. Also, we had to step back and run a crazy 8 session to create a more friendly and intuitive registration form that was consolidated in the mid-fidelity prototype.
User/Participant e-mail communications
Here we had several iterations on the copy. During the tests, we could understand what information was missing or confusing. Being able to work on the UX writing for this project was essential to make the product interesting and easy to use.
We made a 5-second test using usabilityhub.com and gathered 57 answers. The first impressions on the hi-fidelity prototype were quite nice, very aligned on what we wanted to convey.
Our high fidelity prototype has been iterated to fit accessibility standards. We used the Stark plugin for Sketch to validate color contrasts and simulate how users with color blindness see the product.
Thank you for bearing with me on this journey!
If you have any feedback or want to discuss about this project, feel free to write me!