OkaySo

This project started as a team-based design sprint organized by UX For Change to benefit the nonprofit app OkaySo, that turned into an ongoing design volunteer gig working with the app's founders to expand the app's functionality.

Role: UX Designer

How might we empower young adults to share difficult conversations on the OkaySo platform??

The Problem

Many teens and young adults struggle with personal problems, and either feel uncomfortable opening up about them to people in their life for fear of not receiving an objective response, and have trouble finding help online since everyone's situation is so personal and results online are often too generalized.

OkaySo's goal is to encourage users to talk through their problems with volunteers, and have the confidence to then share these conversations with other users to create a sense of not being alone in facing similar issues. The prompt for this design challenge was to design a system that allowed users to more easily navigate through shared conversations, so users could find content relevant to the problems they face.

Constraints

The largest constraint I faced during the initial phase of working with OkaySo is that the entire design sprint took place over a 2-hour period in one night. Due to this time constraint, it really pushed teams to think quickly and rely more on their instincts rather than referring to their own personal research and reiterating.

User Persona

To guide our design, we were provided the persona of Xochitl, a 19-year old struggling with the fact that she may be pregnant and has concerns about being kicked out. She's turning to the Internet as a resource, but finds that Google lacks nuance, bots lack empathy, and she doesn't trust her peers.

Brainstorming

My team and I began by each sketching a three screen summary of our idea for making navigating content on OkaySo's platform easier, and then voted on which few concepts we wanted to expand on for our presentation.

My proposal was implementing a filter tagging system for the conversations shared to the main page, so that users could quickly see which overarching category (relationships, school, family, etc.) the conversation fell under. Our group ended up voting for my concept and moved forward with fleshing it out to present to the founders.

Final Wireframes

My team and I expanded on the filters system in Sketch in the remaining half hour we had left to create our final wireframes for the night, and created a color coded system in order to improve the speed of recognition of which category the content pertains to. I've included the homepage before the event's input on the far left for comparison.

After the event, I decided to clean up the design and present it again to the founders, which has since been used in user testing for future updates to the app.

Additional Functionality

In following up with the founders, as a part of my continued volunteering with OkaySo, I also developed the user flow for experts to provide feedback on the potential usefulness for sharing a conversation once they wrapped up with a user, and submitting it to be published for other OkaySo users to read.

The purpose of this functionality is improve first-time OkaySo users' comfort with opening up about their problems to the experts by seeing how other conversations have gone.

The screens are set to be utilized in user testing once it becomes safer for the founders to meet again after the COVID-19 pandemic.