I was asked to lead a junior IA and join the IKEA creative team to help build a community-oriented web application that would tap into people's love of their products and the creative ways they are used in real homes.
I worked with the creative director and art director early in validating original concepts from pitch decks that brought the full work to us. As usability issues were isolated, I proposed with my IA and our tech department on ways the experience could be redesigned. I delegated core pages and specifications to the junior IA while I developed models for reward & community systems, as well as the difficult interactions in tagging objects within photos that were hard-to-remember, or even discontinued, Finnish-named products.
As concepts evolved with our creative team, I workshopped with the client to ensure that business needs were properly reflected in the changing directions. I reviewed iterative builds with our tech team with the rest of project management & creative as we migrated into an near-Lean UX process as we closed in on final build.
Share Space launched as part of an integrated marketing campaign that ultimately boosted sales 7% that period. It continues to receive great traffic for all initiatives that incorporate it as part of its destinations, and is valued as IKEA's owned social platform for customer activations.
IKEA Share Space
IBM Food Truck
I was brought in by the IBM group to help craft the web presence for the IBM Food Truck. The truck would be using Watson as a form of "cognitive cooking" to come up with permutations of favor pairings that human chefs could not keep track of on their own.
I led the walkthrough of our user journey to determine context and content priorities for the web presence. I sketched with the art director and copywriter to content priorities and create possible structures for a mobile-first web site. Afterwards, I created a wireframe prototype to recreate the navigation and viewing experience directly on the mobile devices we could test them on. This work acted as the UX direction for the third party agency that was contracted to take on production given the tight timelines.
IBM's Watson supercomputer learns how to cook - SXSW 2014
Citizens Bank Art of Savesmanship
The Kick Off
I was brought on the Citizens Bank team to help develop a pitch concept that had been well received: a savings application, but on Facebook. While limited in actual definition in the deck, the idea of people sharing savings goals resonated strongly with client customer research and so they wanted to see it realized in some form.
After absorbing both client and public research about the negative attitudes on the use and discussion of real money on Facebook, I determined that the application would have to go deeper to the actual principles of how people save money, and the demonstrable actions of restraint or cleverness that might garner commentary or ever praise amongst friends. In the process, while creators were aiming to receive praise for saving money in clever or interesting ways, non-creators could still use the application to search this resulting corpus of data about how people were actually saving money in clever or interesting ways for themselves.
I then worked with the larger team in incorporating this concept into action, which had to be tied into a larger campaign effort being designed at the time. I developed a number of app interaction models that showed user content journeys running alongside desired messaging journeys that would tie in TV, digital and other media efforts running at the same time. Full specifications for both desktop and mobile apps were created to detail the experience.
Celebration - The Art of Savesmanship
AMEX Platinum & Centurion
Our team was charged to work alongside Ogilvy London to help realize a platform that would act as the international loyalty sites for American Express Platinum and Centurion card members to increase customer satisfaction with membership and benefit education.
I used the work produced by content strategy to work in concert with the lead creative designers and copywriter to determine a more intuitive navigational structure for their library of cardmember promotions and materials. I used stakeholder interviews and client-provided user research to identify pain points in the current customer service with the rest of the team, and helped design new journeys that would guide in developing creative concepts.
We used information about upcoming tech rollouts for the business to craft a model for how the user experience could be supported beyond just website interactions, and informed the client where improvements in their customer support process could improve member satisfaction. We worked with the client and London to run user tests of both the previous cardmember site and our own staged product to find insights and improvements.
The website was initially rolled out in over a dozen countries in multiple languages to great success — user satisfaction was high and page views on the website increased by over 850% (a number we definitely double-checked).
TWC Dual Screen Concept
The Kick Off
After helping to redesign the MyServices portal for Time Warner Cable, I was asked to help specify a web application that would showcase the unique DVR and Start Over features of its cable boxes through the popular activity of tweeting while watching television. The product would be a DVR-able chat room hosted by a super-fans who would curate "the best of Twitter" into it.
Because this was delivered as a complete concept from strategy and the client, I attempted to validate the concept by creating ad-hoc simulations of the experience: first by informally watching and favoriting tweets for an audience off of the Twitter firehose, then by scheduling the larger team to do this as a simulation of a curator+assistant model.
We logged these experiences and identified the top problems in the concept that we would have to accommodate for in our UI and UX. I created paper prototypes to express interaction design ideas for a "rewindable timeline" as early in the process as possible before needing to involve any technical builds. Once design and I were on the same page for UI concepts, I moved into Axure prototyping of the entire site, as the designers explored look & feel, and tech began to build robust prototypes of the experience using the data we'd captured in our group simulation of the experience. I observed user testing with TWC subscribers of our robust prototype to gauge the attractiveness of the product and impressions of the concept as whole.
Dual Screen performed fantastically to help customers appreciate their TWC subscriptions by highlighting new ways to use their DVR and Start Over features. The complexity of the concept was validated and was planned to be addressed in the next phase of the work, but was put on hold due to TWC's TV Everywhere initiative. TWC does hold patents on the results of the Dual Screen project, of which I am a co-author.
School Specialty Inc.
The Kick Off
I was added to the SSI team to support another lead IA from my department in the wireframing and designing of a highly transactional school supplies retailer. My selection was due to my history with brand and editorial experiences. I was to focus on designing the new content wing of the website and the sections that would communicate the recent acquisitions and brand mergers that was fueling this initiative to redesign.
I participated with the business analyst, creative director, and lead IA on creating a handful of customer journeys that contained all of our primary requirements in order to determine page structure and depth of site. These journeys were used to identify the batches that would be used to split up wire work between the lead and myself. Content wireframing occurred in a shared Axure project where we able to collaborate and hand-off components at any time. We prototyped many functional interactions to convey new or improved customer experiences that front-end implementations could provide to compensate for backend systems that could not be changed.
The Kick Off
I was asked to help design a native AR experience for Ogilvy's presence at Cannes and create a virtual gallery for the people waiting on the red carpet at the festival, to showcase Ogilvy's work at the festival and celebrate David Ogilvy's 100th birthday in social media.
Given this directive pre-approved at the executive global level, I worked with our native app expert to identify the performance problems & difficulty of accuracy with the current AR approach. We were able to propose new gallery interactions around city geofencing instead, in particular around busy spots during the festival in order to broaden the potential audience while also acting as an activity guide to promote interesting destinations in the area.
I worked with the team to identify extra materials to include in the gallery portion of the app to make it more useful and desirable for those who could not fly out to Cannes. I also worked with designers and devs building the web portion to incorporate their aspect of the project which was to collect Twitter avatars of those participating with the app and tweeting through it to build a photo mosaic. Full native prototypes of the experience were then developed by our native app expert and reviewed with internal teams until specifications were agreed upon and could be passed on to the appropriate build vendor.
Building off our relationship with Time Warner Cable, we were asked by RoadRunner to redesign their subscriber portal and bring it up to modern publishing standards after having been an all-Flash application for many years.
I began working with the Art Director on the project on some concept explorations of what a new site could be, given the opportunity to restart from the ground up, the research we had on the usage of the previous site, and the trends in the market on the decline of portal usage in general. We presented these options to the client but in the end fell back to a more traditional portal due to the lack of interest in changing their existing web business structure of content partnerships and syndication.
We then began working on developing a design language that would be modular and fit their new multicolumnal needs for layouts and free configuration of page contents. Once a core langauge was established, we then rode down to their location where we spent a week working side by side with the key stakeholders in joint BRD-writing sprints. These sessions, based on the core experience, walked through each navigable section of the site and established both content and functionality needs. We then would retire and immediately begin producing FSDs for that specific section, and deliver them for review as the next BRD was begun.
After completing the primary sections of the website, we returned back to New York where smaller sections on the periphery of the experience were developed and reviewed. All documents were taken in by the in-house technology teams and the site was coded in house by RoadRunner.