Situation

vzaar is a video hosting service for businesses. It provides an online app where customers can manage their video content and take advantage of features such as customisation, security, video SEO, advertising and more.

The aim of this project was to improve the existing label system for managing video content, as it wasn't adequately supporting customers with large numbers of videos. This project would allow our customers to organise and view their videos in a hierarchical manner.

Challenges

  • New scalable and flexible UI. This will be the first section in the app, built to correspond with the redesign of the marketing site. This section is also the beginning of a new sass framework which will allow us to produce pages faster and more maintainable after the new design launch.

  • The redesign of the app will requires us, more than ever before, to understand how our customers use it. A pleasing and easy to use interface will be the key for a successful user experience.

 

MY ROLE

My contribution started at the very early stages of the project. From initial conceptualisation to the final User Interface Design: graphics and html/css.

My aim was to create an engaging and pleasing product design with a collaborative team approach.

TEAM

I always work with at least one developer. And in this case we had the help and supervision of our project manager and CTO throughout the process.

Input from the sales, marketing and support teams provided an essential collaborative environment.

As part of my mentorship at UXPA, I was fortunate in having the valuable support of my UX mentor, Jonathan Culling, who guided and reviewed my work during the user testing.



Identifying needs

 

The initial exercises that would shed light on the project were: support tickets analysis, stakeholders interviews, stats and deep competitor research.

By looking at support tickets I realised that many of the queries came from the need to make changes en masse: removing and adding labels, editing existing labels, API integration.

Interviews with stakeholders clarified the technical limitations and gave us an understanding of which features the labels were involved in. It was evident that we needed a more clear and flexible system.

By analysing some data we realised that labels were used in several different ways. And showed that we previously misunderstood the limitations of labels and our customers use of them.

We also discovered that there was no consistency in the way our competitors manage videos. The ability to tag and organise a large number of videos was missed by some of them. We found a niche that would bring a valuable benefit for many of our customers.

 
 

A tight turnaround for the Phase 1 launch

 

The date for the first release was getting closer. We needed to have a BETA version of the new feature live for one of our largest clients. This didn’t allow us much time for research. 

After many meetings and with the first Functional Spec ready, I sketched some prototypes that allowed us to discuss our ideas faster. One of the aims was to make a cleaner interface that removed many unnecessary choices - something which had been a frustrating experience for the user. Once we knew which approach we wanted to take, I built a medium-fidelity prototype that we presented to the management team.

 

 

Sketching

Ideal for discussing ideas and and for making decisions faster. Reducing noise!

 

Medium-fidelity prototype

 

Phase 1 - Implementation

 

User Testing

 

The research was conducted over 1 week in London through one formal validation process at the office and three remote validation research tasks outside of the office.

Participants were asked to comment on a paper prototype of the new Video Management section. For the remote validation we had a digital version of this paper prototype built on an InVision app

 

The primary objectives of this research project were:

  1. To get feedback on the new ability to categorise and organise videos.
  2. To gauge participant’s reaction to the new ability to edit, delete and reorganise levels of categories.

 

There were also secondary research objectives, which were:

  1. To find out in which ways participants would like to order a category in order to find them easily.
  2. To gauge how adequately we displayed video information and capture what participants would like to see.
  3. To discover the expectations of our participants in the use of categories in Multi-user Account / Sub-account.
  4. To see how participants found the layout and flow of the new management page: Was it easy to use? Where are the users struggling?
  5. To evaluate how the new improved manage page compared with the current site.
 
 
 
 

As brief summary: the new video management functionality fitted the participants’ expectations and seemed logical to them. They could see themselves using the new functionality and believed it would improve their workflow.

There was a definite pattern to how users categorised their video content and the reasons for them. This brought us some great ideas for future improvements by using categories. 

 
 

Getting ready for Phase 2:
Functional spec

 

It’s time for planning the next release. The aim is to implement some functionality that will make the current BETA version more powerful and also solve some UX/UI that we identified after our research.

I have quite a challenging new task: to write a complete Functional Spec for phase 2. I have started to create some features using the Gherkin language. Here's a couple of examples:

 
 

At all times I worked closely with the development team and the project manager to understand the complexity of implementation, so together we will be able to write a more detailed spec.

 
 

What is next?
We are working on it :)

Phase 2 of the video management project is still in development.
We’ll have a BETA version accessible for all customers soon.