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Iloominus

Role: UI/UX Designer, Researcher, & Project Manager 

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Timeline: 3 weeks 

Research Methods: Competitive Analysis, Contextual Interviews, User Interviews, Affinity Mapping, Wireframes

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Overview: 

illoominus is a start up for DEI+B/HR analytics visualization. illoominus' goal is to create a tool that allows you to easily digest large datasets and provide insights to help companies "light their way to a measurably inclusive workplace." This data typically consists of employee engagement surveys, talent and acquisition, employee demographics, and levels of positions. The software is very much in the development state and they only have a small handful of users, all using different parts of the tool. The CEO and Head of Product asked for the following deliverables:

  • Speak with current and potential users

  • Conduct an updated market/competitive analysis

  • Come up with design iterations to help users better digest and visualize way to important DEI+B/HR data

  • Create a cohesive brand design throughout dashboard page

  • Incorporate their new "firefly" logo into design wireframes (bonus)  

Market Research: 

 

Not only was the client in need up an updated analysis of their top competitors, but I, myself, was vaguely familiar with the DEI+B industry as it's relatively new to the corporate world and slowing being integrated into company policies. 

Illominus target audience is currently positioned toward emerging to mid-market businesses, but I was sure to include some larger companies that were highlighting similar features Illoominus plans to offer. By conducting a feature analysis and brand analysis, I was able to uncover common features, key differentiators, pricing and brand positioning to identify how Illoominus could stand out against it's competition.

 

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Analysis: 

 

After analyzing this research, I was pleased to share with the client that their mission and current offerings were holding up well against their competition. While their competitors offered similar features, Illoominus' vision and current product specifically focuses on DEI+B data and being able to uncover key insights for companies to make impactful changes within their org. When presenting my findings, I gave some additional feature and branding recommendations that would help them stand out even more.

Feature Recommendations

  • Mental health/ burnout prevention 

  • Custom reporting 

  • More date filters (quarterly, specific date ranges, years)

  • Ability to see who left company voluntarily vs involuntarily

  • Hover feature to further explain what data you are looking at

Branding Recommendations

  • Highlighting AI + Machine Learning tech

  • Focus on “B” (belonging) in DEI+B

  • Show the employee journey 

  • Public pricing tiers (by employee or by company size)

  • Showcase predictive analytics 

  • “Meet the team” page - highlight expertise

Interviews: 

 

Now that I had a clear understanding of the current landscape, it was time to speak with professionals in the industry as well as their small pool of current users. 

The client provided a list of potential users in the space along with their current users. I also reached out to my own network via LinkedIn to get as many perspectives as possible. 

 

First I conducted 7 half-hour interviews with my network and potential users to learn more about their roles and deliverables, software they use, what made their job difficult or easy and more. I made an affinity map to bring out common themes from these interviews

 

“The biggest pain point is that all our software to breakdown data doesn’t communicate with each other.”

"Having to use surveys as a means to gather data prevents us from getting the full picture.”​

“It would help to manage diversity if we could see where the breakdowns are in an easier way that all parties understand.”

  • 3rd party data does not sync 

  • Struggle w/ leadership buy-in to make DEI+B a top priority

  • Want more granular data insights

  • Need digestible reports for stakeholders

  • DEI+B is new and lacks structure

Top Interview Themes:

Since Illoominus only had a handful (7) of users all using different parts of the tool, I decided to conduct contextual interviews with each user to uncover their likes and dislikes of the overall tool. These were done via zoom over the course of 30 minutes where I asked about their role and deliverables, and had them share their screen and walk me through how they currently use the tool. 

User Insights:

  • Likes

    • Overall tool 

    • Ability to get a clear glimpse at DEI/HR data

    • Onboarding 

    • Ability to customize company colors

    • Custom report decks

  • Dislikes

    • Confusing labels 

    • Need hover feature to explain labels for non daily users/new users

    • Pie chart confusing - more clicks

    • Issues importing data (more 3rd party issue)

    • Line charts confusing 

Design Iterations:

Legible Bar Charts.

My initial assumption was that the current dashboard graphs were not aiding the users in being able to quickly digest company data or uncover areas they were lacking - this was later confirmed after speaking with their users. Users also wanted to use these graphs when presenting their findings to top executives, but were either having to manually recreate them to best showcase their findings, or hover over the graph and taking a screenshot to show different data points.

It was clear that pie charts and stacked bar chart should not be used when comparing more than 2 points of data (almost always the case when looking at HR data)The bar charts I replaced them with now allow users to clearly identify outliers without any additional clicks as well as visualizing the whole picture.

Before:

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Before:

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After:

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After:

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Dashboard Navigation.

The dashboard had a section of "pinned insights" at the bottom of the page, hiding the most important information for the user. Since vertical space is precious, I moved the pinned insights to the left hand column that had white space not being used to it's full potential. This allows the users to scroll throughout the page, while the insights remained in their vision at all times.

 

Additionally I moved the "download report" button and "sign in" buttons from the left hand column to the header as this is common on most product dashboards.

Before:

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After:

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Design Consistency.

 

This was one of the top design challenges the client was looking for. As you can see on visuals below, each page had different elements, colors, and overall feel. By continuing the use of the bar graphs and adding a consistent header for each page helped tie the each dashboard view to feel more cohesive.

Before:

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After:

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Incorporating The New Logo.

 

This was a bonus design I included for the CEO as she was very excited about their new logo "the illoominus firefly" and how it signifies "lighting the path." Users were confused when bouncing from one visualization to the other, not sure what data they were looking at. The client had heard this feedback before and asked if I could include more indicators for the user so that anyone, not just the core users, could sign in and be able to understand what they were looking at.  

 

I took their logo into Illustrator, removing the background and filling the entire firefly with yellow to create an icon that would be placed above each visualization. The idea is a user can click the firefly icon to further understand the data being showcased on the dashboard. To make sure users were aware of this helpful new tool, I included a small key on the left column to explain how to use.

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Reflection:

I really enjoyed working on this project as I learned a great deal throughout the process such as learning about an entire new industry in a very short amount of time as well as learning best practices for data visualization. The main challenge I ran up against was the fact that the software wasn't entirely developed and each user was using different aspects of the tool, therefore I wasn't able to conduct usability or formal user interviews. However, it was a great learning experience to adapt with the current reality of the product and work with what I had.

It's exciting to see how companies are shifting their priorities to making sure their employees feel welcome and supported. It can only mean more profit and success! Illoominus has such a strong vision and I really enjoyed working with the CEO and head of product. After presenting my work, the client was thrilled with their updated competitive analysis that will aid them when speaking with future investors and onboarding employees. Once they secure their next round of funding they will continue developing the product and implementing my design iterations. 

Client Testimonials:

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"Thank you for the great work you put into the project with Illoominus. As a growing company, we sometimes think we're onto the "wedge" of a problem but it's so important to validate through "fresh eyes" like yours. Thanks for the dedication, curiosity, and growth mindset along the way. It's an ambitious landscape to try to understand in such a short amount of time and you presented a refreshing view for our team. I know we'll be coming back to this research for some time."

Noelle (CEO of Illoominus)

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