Colorblock Poster

MyWork

MyWork is an all-in-one web-based dashboard for freelancers to manage, monitor, and plan their client work.

WHEN

August 2021

DELIVERABLES

ux research

wireframe

high-fidelity design

interaction design

MyWork is a web-based dashboard for freelancers to manage, monitor, and plan their client work. 

Well-designed dashboards start with a well-defined set of goals and the key, actionable insights people need to take away from the data. This focus of this design challenge was to explore the use of suggestive visuals, labels, progressive disclosure techniques, and animation to unravel complex design into reveal data and information at the appropriate time, in a drill-down system.

PROBLEMS & OPPORTUNITIES

The challenges of being a freelancer are quite different from being a traditional employee. While project management with emphasis on both time and priority management is the most obvious challenge that freelancers would have to master, they juggle many different tasks that may or may not be part of the client work. For instance, crafting proposal to land a new client or tracking overdue payment becomes part of workflow that freelancers would have to deal with. In fact, landing new clients is the top obstacles that a freelancer faces in 2020 according to Freelancer Map survey. Individual's ability to become efficient and effective in these fringe tasks in the project pipeline would determine their success as a freelancer.

While there are many project management tools to help manage general productivity, an all-in-one solution that tackles all stages of the work pipeline would greatly increase productivity of freelancers. After initial research, I decided to focus on the following problems:

  • Help freelancers track the project pipeline & allow automation of some of the process to increase their productivity

  • Make it easier for freelancers to utilize a preconfigured system to plan their projects

  • Help freelancers track key metrics on their main dashboard

See the full unpacking of the problem here.

USER FLOW

The user flow can be grouped into in 3 parts:

  • Adding students names to classes, with emphasis on streamlining multiple data entry

  • Adding photos and notes, as additional activity to reinforce memory of individual students

  • Reviewing students' names, combining mnemonics and the Leitner system

roster_artboard_2 - wireframe.png

HIGH-FIDELITY
PROTOTYPE

The user flow can be grouped into in 3 parts:

  • Adding students names to classes, with emphasis on streamlining multiple data entry

  • Adding photos and notes, as additional activity to reinforce memory of individual students

  • Reviewing students' names, combining mnemonics and the Leitner system

THE PRODUCT

ADDING STUDENT NAMES

Without real stakeholders to confirm how the student data would be populated, I had to make some assumptions and educated guesses based on small amount of research that I conducted. The first one was around the method in which student data would be populated in the app. I suspect that many schools would already have implemented some sort of LMS by now (especially after Covid); however, I designed for teachers to enter in data themselves for the following reasons: 1) there is no single dominant LMS adopted by all schools in every district and each school probably has slightly different privacy policies around student photos, and 2) teachers can take this as an opportunity that familiarize themselves with the names, with an option to opt out by simply importing a csv file.

It was important for me that teacher would have an option to enter the student data on desktop, but I also imagine teachers may not have access to desktop when they are using this app: for instance, a good time for app use like this would be during a commute on a public transit. While the main user flow here is for teachers to create a class then add only student names, it is possible to add a single student on Students tab and also to add photos and notes while populating student data. Here are some of my thoughts on tradeoffs between simplicity and flexibility.

Engineering Sketch

ADDING PHOTOS & NOTES AS MNEMONICS

There are many scenarios how a teacher would acquire a student photo: 1) ideally the school would have the files that teachers have access to — either in electronic or physical format, 2) ask students to send in their photos, or 3) have teachers take the photos themselves. In either scenario, the desired action is for teachers to take a deliberate memorization: "pay attention to students' faces and make a mental note".

It would be ideal to gather photos and notes all at the same time, but realistically speaking teachers will add data when they can. In order to facilitate this, it was important to include features that 1) show the progress on class cards as well as student cards, 2) allows users to filter only students with missing data, and 3) to choose main image and description on individual student entry.

Another key function that I wanted to include was the ability to take notes for individual or multiple students. Educators can choose which notes will be displayed as the main one in student list or review. Additional points that could be considered are: 1) adding multiple photos per student entry, 2) ability to add voice record (for things like pronunciation), etc. The goal of this feature for educators to record notes about individual students throughout the semester, building rich, multi-faceted understanding of their students. < add knowledge acquisition vs. learning

Engineering Sketch

FLASHCARD REVISITED

Although adding more photos and notes per each student will help educators familiarize with each student, teachers would need to deliberately memorize students' names and faces during the initial stage of learning curve especially in the beginning of the semester. Review will help faster memorization (and achieve the goal initially described in the prompt). It was important to give users some flexibility on which set of students they want to focus on — whether it be by class or learning phase. Once a review session begins, only the students that the teacher marked "still learning" will be piled into a new deck of cards to review again; this process repeats until the teacher marks every student in the set as "remembered".

Engineering Sketch

NEXT STEPS

Here are some next steps to consider:

  • Increasing engagement: although memorizing students' faces and names seem like an important thing for educators, my professor friends low-key confessed to me that they don't try anymore. What sort of features can help encourage engagement for the less engaged?

  • School admin view: although the initial app was designed with the assumption that each educators are responsible for the data, I can also imagine a situation where a school board is encouraging teachers to adopt this kind of behavior.

  • Delicate subject called COPPA: privacy around children is tricky, and app like this prompts many privacy questions.

CONCLUSIONS

Paul and I were pretty happy about the new design, which chiseled a more generic design to serve a specific user behavior. While this specific design tried to serve a very niche segment of users who are very familiar with the nutrition data, I am excited to see how the overall website can develop into an opportunity to serve and educate the general public in the future.