What we did this week
“Your bank has acquired a new analytics company, and their boss wants to integrate their core product as fast as possible”
In order to quickly ideate for this unexpected twist, I opted to use a few of the methods originally introduced by our professor – Jon Kolko – at the beginning of the quarter:
– Character creation
– Task assignment
In short, I wrote a short story of the individual I’m designing for. He is a 30 year old designer – not much of a planner – who has a pipeline of ambitious plans for 2018. With a project to build a house, and an upcoming dream trip to Japan, Tony wants to have his finances in order to keep everything from falling off track starting this new year.
The client’s ask:
– An Account Overview to view spending trends
– A Recommendations feature which would allow the user to dynamically visualize how changes in monthly payments can impact the user’s account
– Anomalous transaction analysis which allows the user to be instantly aware of any strange transactions
– The Money Calculator, which allows the user to know what money is available to spend at any given time
Taking into account what the “client’s” ask consisted on, I crafted a quick and dirty map that linked my character’s story with the aforementioned capabilities:
As a shortcut to storyboarding, this diagram was a useful first step that helped me figure which would be a logical flow for an individual with these characteristics to follow under his circumstances.
Some competitive analysis for inspiration
I chose a different ideation technique to get me started with sketching. I researched current personal finance mobile applications that are currently thriving in the market looking for what made them special. I then (quickly) sketched by hand a few of these features and showed them to a couple of people. They then told me which features they would like to see in a personal finance application of their own.
Here’s how that turnout looked like (the ones marked red where the preferred features) –
After this second round of ideation, I started to draw some actual screens and the digital product began to take form.
Testing the design
Just like I have been doing with previous iterations of this same exercise, I tested an initial round of my paper wireframes to get initial feedback of where my ideas were going. For this activity, I used a mixture of methods like the technique called Think Aloud Protocol (which consists on assigning a task to an individual and have them explain out loud how they go about accomplishing the task), as well as a simple “show and tell me what you think” activity.
This last one proved to be quite handy, specially for a design that had so many features and little time to build an interactive prototype.
After I gathered and processed user input, I started building wireframes on my digital tool which I tested one more time with three users with the same techniques I mentioned before.
The "review my budget" capability did not look aesthetically aligned to the rest of the screen.
I got rid of the "Compare Spending" option and added an editing capability where users are able to set either a monthly or weekly budget. This way, the message will be easier to consume.