I participated in a five-day design sprint, following the Design Sprint process, with three other designers to collaborate on a digital solution. theScore, a digital media company, presented an opportunity to connect individuals, especially those working from home, through recreational sports. We designed REConnect, a mobile app that enables users to register for organized sports leagues to connect with one another.
Even in the remote, work-from-home environment we all find ourselves living in, there is an opportunity to connect individuals and communities through recreational sports.
We explored existing digital apps used for social connection and/or recreational sports. However, we wondered: what could be improved or enhanced?
We intended on designing a digital solution that is useful as life returns to normalcy, where many busy adults will likely continue to work from home. Therefore, we produced a journey map to illustrate the steps that are taken until this demographic reaches their goal: to socially connect through recreational sports.
Based on our research, we wanted to identify a targeted solution that could be designed. Having conducted phone interviews with three adults familiar with recreational sports, we synthesized our findings into three themes.
After taking a closer look at our interview themes, it was apparent that our interviewees wanted a solution for organized recreational sports. We then crafted HMW questions to narrow in on the focus, and decided on the one that best represented our insights.
From our insights, we created a persona that highlighted the main goal and pain point, and used this to design an experience map to visualize how they would currently connect to others through organized, recreational sports. It is when the persona feels overwhelmed where an opportunity for a digital solution arises.
With an opportunity point identified in the experience map, we designed a task flow diagram based on a busy adult who wants to register for an organized recreational sports league to stay connected with others.
Before we began sketching, we gathered inspiration from existing app layouts, recreational sports websites and content found on Dribbble. Each member individually sketched variations of app screens following the task flow.
Using a combination of our sketches, we moved forward with these screens to be used for our wireframes. The flow takes the user through a sign-up, joining a sports league team as an individual, and inviting a friend to join.
We were also provided with brand colour & type guidelines to follow and our screens must be WCAG 2.0 Level AA Compliant (colour contrast = 4.5 : 1).
Our digital solution, which incorporates recreational sports + social connection, is REConnect. This app allows our target user to look for and sign up to organized, recreational sports leagues to connect with their friends.
We took our interactive prototype and conducted usability testing with three users. We received important feedback for iterations, which were made before we presented this solution to theScore.
With time constraints existing for this sprint, I believe my biggest takeaway was my ability to effectively collaborate with other UX designers towards a common goal. Additionally, I also acquired some important key learnings.
1. Time is of the Essence: I learned that time management is important when a user-centred solution is to be completed in a matter of days, especially with research, prototyping and testing.
2. Team Decisions are Key: I learned that it is crucial that decisions are mutually agreed by all designers, as the created solution/feature may impact an existing app's success or failure.
3. User Testing is a Must: I learned that usability testing to obtain feedback can lead to important iterations, which are important to keep the end-solution with the user needs in mind.