Crostutor, is a Vancouver based startup company with the goal of connecting students with professional tutors. The platform encourages students and tutors to connect both online and offline. My role as the product designer at this startup meant that my responsibilities covered all design related aspects of the company. I worked closely with the project manager and developers on the app platform, and also helped to form a distinct visual identity for the company.
Team + Role
The small team working on this project included, 1 iOS developer, 2 Android developers, 1 backend developer, 1 project manager, 1 UX designer, and 1 business coordinator.
Role: UX/UI Design, Branding, Graphic Design, Digital Marketing, Copywriting
I joined the Crostutor team very early on in the development stages, when they had just launched the first release of the app. As there had been no designer present before I joined, very little thought had been given to the user experience and design of the interface. The app needed a complete re-work in terms of the user flows, navigation, and overall user experience. The aesthetics and visual identity of the company was also in need of a makeover.
Initial research for the project began with analysis of existing competitors, and similar web or mobile platforms. I also worked closely with the founder and project manager, to hone in on our target demographic. This involved deciding which types of students (high-school, university, exam prep etc.) as well as which types of subjects and tutors we would focus our app towards.
Creating user personas also further helped us to define our business goals and decide which features and functionality would be most useful to our users.
The logo design for the company was inspired by the exchange of knowledge between student and teacher. The small loop inside representing the student, being supported and guided by the larger outer ring.
The visual identity for the company was made to be vibrant and energetic, with fun animations and illustrations to delight users. At the same time a degree of professionalism also needed to be communicated to appeal to both tutors as well as parents of prospective students.
3. USER EXPERIENCE
For wireframing and prototyping the app, our team worked in short sprint cycles to test out features and alter the apps functionality accordingly. I worked a few weeks ahead of the development team, starting off with notebook sketches which were eventually translated to pixel perfect digital mockups.
Our project manager had very ambitious goals for our team and a lot of different features were planned and implemented. Many of these features were changed as the app progressed, but a large part of managing the UX was finding ways to make the app seem less overwhelming. One of the ways that this was done, was by limiting the amount of information displayed and reorganizing information on separate pages and sections.
5. VISUAL DESIGN
Various print and digital visual design elements were also created to help with marketing the app. Business cards, app download cards, and posters were created to be distributed around university campuses. Pull up banners were also created to display at student networking events.
Animated banners were also created and featured within the app to promote friend referrals and tutor signups. To help explain what the app was about, a short animated video was also created using Powtoons.
A promotional website was created to help explain what the app does, as well as highlight the various perks and benefits of using the app. My role involved the overall design of the website, as well as the content and copy that was to be featured.