Hi, I’m Michelle and I am an UX designer intern at MediaLab. In the last couple of months, I’ve been focusing on the design challenge: how MediaLab can be made more accessible by offering a new desktop app for fast uploading and downloading files. By doing research, I found out what the desktop app will look like on UX and UI perspective, by comparing similar companies and to investigate how MediaLab can make a difference.
Define a test group
The first step was to define the target groups. The primary target groups of MediaLab are media production companies and broadcasters. For them, I wanted to design a functional desktop app tool that they can use without logging into the online platform. So, I started off with contacting multiple clients like Warner, NTR, Wisemonkeys and Jimmy Nelson, to discover what they think of the idea of a new MediaLab desktop app and what features they would like to see.
Creating the design plan
The clients gave me a lot of input and inspiration about functionalities and features. With that in mind, I continued with the research comparing other solutions and started on my designs for the new desktop app. But first of all, the plan to create a MediaLab desktop app for uploading and downloading files was not really asked by clients. They said there is no demand for a desktop app as long as it contains all the functionalities of the current MediaLab platform.
This changed the approach of plan and the new design challenge became: How can I make MediaLab more accessible for users by offering a desktop app for fast uploading and sharing files? Therefore, I came up with the idea of creating a desktop app for MediaLab Link and also fast and easy uploading to a (new) folder. When I had a couple of online meetings with the developers, we eventually agreed on what features this desktop app must have.
Getting to the test phase
I got to the testing phase, where I contacted the clients who I had interviewed before. They tested my designs and gave me good feedback, so I could finalize the final prototype of the desktop app for MediaLab. I am very happy with the result and I’m proud to say that I got graded an 8/10 for my internship. So overall, despite the weird period that everything had to be online, I have made it work and I am glad that adjusting to the new way of working was eventually also working for me.
For me, the process of defining the problem, doing research and having meetings with developers was sometimes uneasy in a way. A lot of times I had to work from home due to Covid-19, making it a lot harder to contact people. Everything you do, had to be online. So, a moment of sitting at a desk at the office where you can ask colleagues small or big questions was not really the way to go. For questions you almost only communicated via Slack or Teams and that is different from the normal way. Therefore, when I contacted clients for an interview, I discovered insights that weren’t known before and I had to change my design challenge.
This was also a big step in my process, and I had to communicate that with the development team so we could agree on a new idea and format for the desktop app. When I started designing de desktop app, I was of course still working from home, doing research about design patterns and had a two-weekly meeting with the team to discuss the designs and progress.
But in the end, even with all the challenges that COVID provided, I finished my design for a MediaLab desktop application.