Let’s end galactic unemployment
Novorésumé is a tec start-up business, with a great vision to end all unemployment in the world. They provide an online platform, that helps job seekers to create nicely designed resumes and cover letters.
With more than 1 million customers, Novorésumé is looking for new ways to expand their service or provide new features, that will help them reach their goal and help job seekers to get their dream job. But what are the pains and gains of a jobseeker, and what do HR managers really want?
To find out, we planned a research phase with interviews of 4 job seekers, 4 people that had recently found their first job, and 4 HR managers in small or medium-sized companies. This was the beginning of my journey with Novorésumé, that ended with Novorésumé developing one of our concepts. Scroll down this page if you’re curious to find out more.
The conclusions of our research, the new business opportunities, ideas, and final MVP is unfortunately confidential as they are being developed further, but I’m more than happy to share the process with you.
Tadaa; Final insights report with quotes, conclusions and new business opportunities
Back to the beginning
Before we went out in the field, we needed to know more about the needs of our client and set the scope of the project. What were their hopes and goals for the interviews? What did they want to ask their users? Having an interview-guide co-creation workshop together was a great way to discover this and get started on the project.
Together with my co-designer, Pieter Overgoor, we planned and facilitated a 2-hour workshop with Novorésumé. The outcome of the workshop made us so much clearer on the goal and direction of the research, and also we got to know our client better, their business and target groups.
After the workshop, we processed the workshop while the insights were still fresh in our minds. We went through the post-its and pictures from the workshop and started to group them in a shared Miro board. This was the beginning and foundation of the 3 interview guides, that would help us reach our goal.
The scope and goal of the project, interview areas and questions was found in collaboration.
End of workshop, ensuring we reached our goals that we found in collaboration in the beginning of the workshop
We made the interview guides and found our participants for the interviews through our network and our network networks.
This, together with planning 12 interviews, with 12 different people within a tight deadline was a big puzzle and a bigger challenge than I had imagined, but it all worked out well and soon we conducted our first interview.
We used a user journey throughout the interviews, to help the participants recall and structure their past experiences and how they felt doing those experiences. It was a bit of an experiment, as we had never done that before, but it worked out really well in the first interview and we decided to continue this in the coming interviews as well.
Finding the golden insights
When all 12 interviews were conducted, we planned a 4-hour insights workshop with the client, to analyze the raw data, finding patterns and insights in collaboration.
To prepare for the workshop, we went through all our research data, wrote down a lot of quotes on post-it’s, and clustered them in a few different topics that we saw. Ready to be analyzed.
We didn’t know if there would be sufficient insights coming out of the workshop, as the client isn’t used to analyzing data the same way we are, but it went quite well and it was a nice way to include the client in our process and it helped them to see exactly what their users had said. They understood easier than if we had just been giving them the results of the research in a report and this way it was also easy for them to trust our data.
After the co-creation workshop, we analyzed all the quotes again by ourselves to make sure we didn’t miss any golden insights.
Co-creation workshop, clustering quotes and finding insights from our research data
Crunching data continued at EGGS office
From insights to opportunities
And so, we had reached the last task in our research phase, which was to transform our insights into business opportunities and present them to the client in an insights report.
We designed the report in such a way, that it would work as a tangible reminder of the process and we made it clear which insights came from which quotes, and with insights had led to which business opportunities.
We presented the report which included 13 new business opportunities for the client and discussed the next steps. It was very exciting to see if the client wanted to continue the collaboration with us or continue by themselves into a design phase. I’m happy and proud to say that they chose to continue with us. Yay!
Presenting the insights and new business opportunities for the client
A few changes and replacements were made in the EGGS team. I was still design lead, but now I had responsibility for the whole project as a project manager and took over the communication with the client.
Deliverable for the design phase; idea catalog with concepts, process, and test
To kick-off the design-phase, I planned a 5-hour co-creation ideation workshop with the client, based on 4 business opportunities, that they had already chosen to explore further.
It was the first workshop I had ever planned and facilitated all by myself, but the ideation phase is one of my favorite phases in design, so I was more excited than scared to plan the exercises and to see, how it would turn out. And it went awesome! It was a great challenge and I definitely grew a bit that day.
I see workshops kind of like a prototype, you come up with ideas and plan different exercises that you think makes sense for the specific project, client, and purpose, and you hope that it will be a success, but you never know for sure what will happen and how it will turn out. That’s also what makes it so fun and exciting. And if something works really well or not, you’ll know till next time.
Co-creation ideation workshop with the client; first brainstorming exercise
Last exercise was to vote on your favorite ideas
Ideation continued back at the EGGS office
Iteration and conceptualization
Our new freelancer on the project, Peter Urban, and I went home with lots of ideas and sketches on new services and features, that we continued to iterate and conceptualize. Some ideas from the workshop were just finetuned and some were brand new. We used sketching to collaborate and test early ideas internally, and it was a great way to present our work and ideas to our creative director as well.
At the end of the session, we had chosen 13 concepts we wanted to test with end-users.
Lo-fi testing of early concepts
And so, it was time to test the concepts, and to prepare for this, we drew out our quick sketches to make the concepts easier to understand. I prepared a few questions for each concept, but mainly I wanted to present the idea of the concept, ask for their opinion of it, and why. Of course, with the introduction that they are the experts, there are no wrong answers, and everything can be changed. And that’s what’s so nice with testing ideas and sketches early on. The time and cost to make changes are minimal.
Within the timeframe and budget, it was only possible to lo-fi test with 2 users. A jobseeker and an HR manager, but a few is better than none, and the outcome was very positive, so positive, that we couldn’t exclude any of the ideas, and therefore Novorésumé got 13 concepts in the idea catalog, instead of just the 8 ideas, that was agreed on in the proposal.
Lo-fi Testing testing, process, and test
Before designing the final idea catalog, I thought it would be nice to present the final concepts to Novorésumé, and also the feedback we got from the tests. Next, I would also like Novorésumé to help us prioritize the ideas, in an effort/impact workshop. Which ideas would be great to develop first from a business point of view? After the presentation, In co-creation, we went through the ideas one by one, discussing how much impact it would have on their business, and how much effort it would take to develop.
I made a diagram on the floor, where the best place to be for an idea, was the green spot in the upper right corner, here an idea has a big impact but little effort to make. I couldn’t have done this myself, as Novorésumé knows their business processes better than anyone. It went really well and is differently something I will use in future projects as well.
The idea catalog
The idea catalog with the final 13 final concepts, feedback, and quotes from the lo-fi prototype tests and effort/impact illustrations was presented to the client and the next steps were discussed.
To remind Novorésumé of our results from the impact/effort workshop, we made an illustration next to each idea when we designed the catalog. In that way, it would be easier for them to decide on what to design first, based not only on user needs but also their business.
As Novorésumé have their own UX and graphic designers, we weren’t sure if they wanted us to continue further into an MVP phase. We made a new proposal for the MVP phase that included hi-fi prototyping and testing. A few days later I got an e-mail that they very much wanted to continue with us in the next phase! Yay!
The first MVP
Novorésumé had chosen 2 ideas, that they would like us to prototype first. The first one we call Novodex. Unfortunately, I can’t tell you any more about it, but here is what we did to make it come alive.
Tadaaaaa; Insights report from prototype tests with quotes, conclusions and our suggestions for improvements
First thing was to explore the concept in detail, how would it work in real life? To do this, we started sketching wireframes.
The best ideas don’t come out of just one brain, but to get our heads around the challenge and because of the level of detail we needed, we chose to split up at first, to disappear in our own creative bubbles and sketch on details of the flow in the wireframes by our self’s. After a few hours, we presented our sketches to each other, discussed them, and then took the best ideas of us both and drew them into just one final wireframe. Peter made our wireframes digital into a hi-fi prototype, while I planned and found participants to our final hi-fi prototype test.
Test of Novodex
We tested the prototype with 4 HR managers, that was the target group of Novorésumé's new service. We had prepared some questions and wanted to test both the concept of Novodex and the user experience of the new service. It went well, all participants could see themself using the Novodex in their daily HR work, and with a few comments and ideas for improvements, we high-fived and started working on the last deliverable to Novorésumé.
The last deliverable was a final report with the insights from our Hi-fi tests, including quotes, conclusions, MVP documentation, and our suggestions for where to make some final changes before developing.
We presented our final work for the team at Novorésumé, that was very pleased and hopefully, we will soon meet again :)
Novorésumé is currently working on developing Novodex.