Upflex is the first global co-working network for teams. Upflex is on a mission to help small and large companies reduce their office costs while providing flexible workspaces for their employees. With under 100 downloads per month, Upflex is still in the early stages of development. We took time to discover nuances of the industry, product, and customer journey. We wanted to re-design the existing application to improve the overall usability and app retention.
Understanding The Business
In order to understand UniGreeks goals, we conducted stakeholder interviews with the founders to identify and understand their needs. Speaking with the stakeholders, we came to the following goals:
We utilized the Abby Method of the Heuristic Evaluation to determine the best practice of the existing app. Additionally we analyzed Upflex’s competitors to access if there are any areas of opportunity that we can take advantage of.
We wanted to highlight that Upflex scored "Meets Best Practice" upon the Clarity category due to it efficiently and clearly texts and easy viewing of the different spaces provided, providing little to no room for ambiguity.
Overall, the main area for opportunity is with the app’s lack of delight. The hues and color scheme on their own, are visually pleasing, but the usage does little to make the experience pleasant and stimulating. The feedback given to the user during or after completing tasks gave little sense of character, personality, or flair. Improving on this will be key for driving engagement and brand loyalty.
While analyzing Upflex’s three main competitors, Get Croissant, Deskpass, and Co-Worker, we took special note of features they offered compared to Upflex. There are two major opportunities missing for Upflex that its competitors all have: an indicator of the user’s current distance from a workplace location and robust descriptions of co-working spaces.
*Note: Upflex received half a star for customer reviews because the reviews were there but users were not able to see the reviews entirely.
We tested 6 users on the usability of the current app, learning their initial impressions and gauging their ability to complete tasks.
The imagery and lack of branding on the onboarding screens didn’t create a memorable impression or communicate the brand value well.
The main page, or map view, presented a variety of usability issues.
There was confusion surrounding the numbers that annotated each coworking option on the map, as it wasn’t clear that this spoke to desk availability.
The filtering options at the top of the page didn’t organize information especially well for users.
The same co-working space and amenities options populated into the same secondary navigation drop-down menu regardless of what button was pressed.
Data Synthesis and Key User Insights
Out 30 of those who took our screener survey, we interviewed the most qualified 9 persons to tell us more about their goals, needs, pain points and behaviors within booking a co-working space.
The criteria we used to narrow down to those specified 9, was whether or not they had experience within booking or utilizing a co-working space.
Most qualified 9 users for user interview
Interviewing 9 users who have booked a co-working space or been to a co-working space, we were able to have a better understanding of their goals, needs, behavior, and pain-points. We asked them a range of questions to learn more about their mental models and guided them to story-tell.
After gathering a large amount of data from our interviews, we used a technique called affinity mapping to note where there were trends.
Location, price, amenities, and community/ambiance are important parts of the co-working experience.
Remote workers find it more convenient to have a long term contract/membership with a co-working space.
Remote workers don’t use co-working spaces daily but need access to multiple locations when they do.
Users find that online descriptions aren’t always accurate and look to photos and/or human contact for credibility.
The User and Their Journey
Using the insights we developed a persona that represents our user base.
Our persona helps capture and communicate the needs of the target demographic of those who want to book a co-working space and understand our users experience and frustrations of booking a co-working space.
Jaime needs an easy way to find and book flexible co-working options for a variety of work scenarios.
Considering his hectic schedule, how might we help Jaime quickly and confidently book the right co-working option from his phone while on the go?
As we looked to transition our insights into something more concrete, we considered what features would help address the needs of our users based on our data. From there, we conducted feature prioritization to evaluate the importance of each feature based on impact and bandwidth.
Based on our testing results we realized that the tutorial does not stand out on the screen 1. In Screen "2", we made the background less opaque, it places more focus on the tutorial.
Within screen "1", we changed the numeric value of the credits icon to a symbol dot, which will be colored in green, yellow or red to symbolize the level of credits the user might have (screen "2").
Users had difficulty in choosing “All Spaces” to find the type of space they were looking for. We felt this verbiage would be more inclusive of meeting rooms and private offices but it didn’t automatically signal this to users. We defaulted back to “Desks”.
The bottom toggle for credits was changed Rather than show how many credits the user has, we decided to notify the user using a green dot (a lot of credits), yellow dot (medium amount of credits) and red dot (very low/no credits).
To encourage users to check-in, users are clearly notified that Upflex will only plant a tree when they check-in.
Our final reiteration showed a significant decrease in clicks as well as user satisfaction in comparison to the original mobile application.
Working with Upflex was a great experience and allowed us to showcase different changes that would not only benefit Upflex but benefit the users, both new and old. Due to the two week time constraint and some technical constraints, there were some things we were not able to do. However, in its stead, we were able to provide the above recommendations for Upflex that can be further tested and implemented moving forward.
Microanimations on buttons for feedback - Increase controllability and give users confidence in the functionality of the app.
Push Notifications - Reminder to check in and check out to ensure employees comply.
Ratings & Reviews of Office Spaces - Gives users a better sense of the spaces and adds value to the app.
Nearby Subway Stops - A very handy feature for employees working in new cities, or with specific transit needs.
QR Code for Check-In - Convenient for everyone to ensure quick accurate check-in.