collaboration tool for designers
Before I joined the team, corabbit was originally a file sharing service that was developed for about a year. Due to the number of file sharing services already out there, management decided to pivot to a collaboration tool for designers.
The idea behind the pivot was that getting feedback for designs from clients was a nightmare. It was mostly done with emails, which can turn into long trials or feedback was not put into context which made it hard to understand what was being said.
After another year and a half of development and a premature product launch, the product was still unsuccessful and we had received some pretty negative comments about the usability of the product. This was due to the fact that a lot of features were kept from the file sharing product (not my idea).
Our manager who had originally created the service had also quit a few months later which meant that the service was doomed. Without a manager to continue on, I was promoted to team leader at the time because I strongly believed in the product and that the problem is real.
Before any decisions were made, it was important to validate the problem and understand our target users, and the most effective way to do that is to speak with them. I conducted face to face user interviews with 10 different Japanese designers and created 2 main user personas from the results.
At that time I also felt that a lot of the features that were kept from the file sharing idea should be removed because it had nothing to do with collaboration, but how could we do that without alienating the current users?
I came up with the idea to create a completely separate UI and brand it “BETA UI” that users had the option to switch to. As we improved the usability and design of the product by reusing the same code for the features meant that we had a full blown and improved product in less than 2 months. Within the first month 90% of our users had switched from the old clunky product to the new BETA.
The first major problem I wanted to tackle was the complexity of the product and how we could simplify it. I calculated the number of steps it would take a designer to get feedback on their work from the time they upload their design till they got their first feedback and it would take a whopping 12 steps!
rom the research, a designer at any given point in time was working on at least 1 and at most 2 projects which meant that forcing them first create a project for every different task was pointless as they would always only see either 1 or 2 projects on their dashboard. Therefore we changed the flow to allow designers to upload their designs directly to the dashboard first and by allowing them to share it they could received feedback in 3 steps! If they needed a project they could create it after wards or simply mark the design was done and never see it again.
The collaboration for both designers and their clients happen here! Even if the client doesn’t have Sketch, Photoshop or Illustrator, they can still see the design.
For clients We allow them to draw on the design and add their comments to put it into perspective and really to the point about what they’re trying to say. They can also compare different version of the designs to see how they compare with previous versions.
For designers As a designer, I know there’s always a need for versioning because there are always changes that need to be made. We added the ability to share the designs publicy or privately with a password. At the end of the design phase, there is a hand off to the clients or engineers therefore we have added a feature to allow everyone to download the original source file.
To Do List
There are so many different “To Do List” apps out there that we wanted to make it easier for designers to keep track of all comments and feedback that have been said from clients that they can relate back to on their design.