This case study focuses on an enterprise software design project for a group of global financial consultants. The goal of the project was to redesign an ideation and risk management platform to help the group work with clients to create, discuss and audit many potential cost-saving ideas.
Since we were designing the application for internal use, I worked with a primary stakeholder in the company to do research. The output of this research was detailed information for:
Persona types include traits of each particular user as well as pain points (challenges) and potential solutions for these pain points. This gets us into a problem thinking frame of mind as opposed to simply applying solutions in the product design. User stories gives us insight into the tasks and needs eacher user has. Known challenges outline problems within the current system and an organisational model is a site map of the current platform; this allows us to see all the moving parts of the system in a documented way.
I like to take a collaborative approach to product design, especially in the beginning phases of a large project. To do this, I planned and facilitated workshops over the course of two days so the team could take part in the project definition and design process. Research from the previous step helped set the stage for these workshops. Workshops included:
Based on our design studio exercise, I produced low-fidelity, sketch-style designs. The output of design studio is a bunch of pen and paper sketches that are full of ideas created by myself and the workshop team. The low-fidelity designs bring these sketches into life in a fidelity that can be produced quickly, but that also feel real enough to get good feedback. This approach allowed me to put together and iterate on a design vision based rather quickly and move confidently into the next phase of work.
Upon completion of the low-fidelity design, I produced high-fidelity designs, which include full detail around layout and presentation of content including real fonts, sizes and showing all the interactions insdie the design. This phase of work included multiple rounds of design for a multitude of screens and views, which took course over the period of three weeks. Below is an example of what the high-fidelity designs look like. These are real designs simply without color.
With the high-fidelity design finished, I started working on the visual design using cues from the aesthetic direction exercise we did in the beginning of the project. At the same time and in tandem with a front-end development partner, we started the coding the front-end based on the high-fidelity design. When visual designs were done we simply updated the CSS with the visual branding for a completely working front-end prototype.