A project to fully understand the needs of the members and the vision for the future of the institute
The CIM is made up of multiple services delivering various products. Often getting a precise description of these products and the vision for the future of their services was something I found hard and so the members must find very difficult. I worked with and listened to all teams within the institute as well as all the people who interact with the CIM, members or not.
To help nail down the requirements I adopted the design councils 'double diamond' process. The expanding and reduction of dots in the diagram below are used to communicate the stages of divergent and convergent thinking. Bringing us from a simple list of problems at the start to a simple list of requirements and personas in the middle of the two diamonds and a simple solution at the end. Following are the four stages.
The first stage involved listening to everything that people around the institute had to say about what services we offer, to who and why. Discovering what is the vision for the future of the institute. It involved finding out all the people who interact with the CIM and how we can benefit them. I also analysed the competition to see what was been offered to the same people from elsewhere.
The office is located at the main study centre which gave plenty of opportunities for speaking to CIM members. I also collected more quantitative data from analytic tools and read reports about design patterns we were currently using.
This stage involved collating all the research and simplifying it into a limited number of personas and user journeys. I had a list of 18 marketing profiles, which I joined together based on four motivations: prospect, professional, executive (someone looking to up skill and retain a team of marketers) and influencer.
I assigned each persona a value based on how important we are to them and they are to CIM. This meant that when we worked out the value of each user journey related to each persona we could easily multiply the two values to prioritise the core user journeys.
This gave us a simple score for each requirement we were trying to fulfil so throughout later iterations we can check our assumed solutions agains our goals. e.g. an influencer sharing information is very high so our goal for article sharing is a 30% increase. Until this has increased to 30% more solutions need to be tested.
From our list of requirements we were able to identify multiple assumed solutions for each. Once we had chosen an assumption to test I used card sorting to assign them into areas of a sitemap. I created a few wireframe solutions for each journey to avoid growing to attached or opinionated toward any. I then tested each journey with 50 non bias participants using online click test software.
In this example you can see how this one click test for finding a course get 30% more success than the original site but takes 10 seconds longer. We can see that this is because on the homepage of the suggested solution, users often couldn't find the 'study' menu option and spent around 30 seconds looking. Another option had the word Learning which 18% more accurate and 20 seconds faster.
The CIM were undergoing rebrand at the time so an external branding agency supplied branding guidelines. I designed the UI for all the possible elements for this and any other CIM site will need, which I assigned a letter to make it easy to communicate which elements will go on which page.
There were four final wireframes, homepage, sub-homepage, product list page and article page. So for example a page with a list of events would be the product list page and might contain the elements a-c-g-k-l-x-z. This made it easier to explain to the developers exactly what will be on each page.