Issuer Portal is a tool to streamline the funding process for Renovate America's government partners while also offering them a greater sense of empowerment and insight into their program. We had six months to get the first version of a brand new product out the door and we were able to accomplish an MVP in five months. We did this while:
- Managing a workforce reduction in the development team and change in engineering leadership.
- Satisfying multiple stakeholders including market expansion, issuer relations, ops, and legal.
- Scaling back with constantly changing requirements.
- Making site visits to get user feedback on early concepts and direction.
Analyze Current State
Feature requirements were made using stakeholder input, business intelligence units, and market research.
- To setup our measures of success we mined existing patterns of activity to gather trends.
- We interviewed existing users to identify pain points and usage scenarios. We created use cases and personas from this data.
- Speaking to internal customer support units helped us gain an understanding of common friction points the new system would alleviate.
Once we gathered enough raw data, several concept models were white boarded together to discuss feasibility and if they hit our original problem statement.
Using these early ideas, we can generate rough concept maps that can bring the team synchronized in our thinking and establish mile markers on agreed upon issues.
After sufficient iterations on concept maps, I narrowed down our use cases and personas into targeted scenario flows. The extra level of detail provided allows developers to start "T-Shirt" sizing how much certain features would cost in development time.
The sizing of effort allows us to start critically removing what we would consider MVP features and nice to haves.
The level of detail provided by flow maps also allows us to reach back to stakeholders in different teams to verify that we're meeting their requirements and get feedback.
With the flows, personas, and finalized requirements in place, we can get to a step by step flow with more detailed wireframes. The wireframes allow visual designers to step in and start creating a visual identity to the product. The data used are always realistic placeholder data that will be representative of average scenarios.
Final Visual Flows
With assets from visual designers, the product starts to come to life. We start to map out edge cases and also start eliminating screens that could not make it into a final MVP.
As development sprints continue, the product design team continues to iterate on features and evolving the design. Requirements will change, users will provide insights, and stakeholders will want revisions. We keep a master flow and prototype up to date to keep all parties synchronized on how the product is moving forward.