Career development and growth is highly sought after by young talent. These employees seek company cultures that value engagement, career growth, and instilling professional development.
How might we enhance career growth and encourage engagement between managers and employees?
Arise is a career growth application that enhances communication between managers and employees by encouraging regular performance feedback and goal-setting. This all facilitates a positive work environment and culture.
When we first began the project, we were mainly interested in learning about how managers and employees exchanged feedback in a workplace setting. We found that there were a few pain point trends amongst 10 employees and managers from various sized companies we interviewed — feedback method, peer feedback, feedback requency, career growth, request difficulty.
We created user personas based on our interviewees to help with ideation and creation process.
We took a look at existing HCM performance tracking software, such as Workday HCM and Lattice, and found that they lacked the push for consistent conversation surrounding professional development and career growth between managers and employees.
Amongst the growing number of pain points, we chose to focus on career growth. It is not discussed frequently, typically once a year, unless initiated by the employee. The ability to track progress over times makes it clear what the individual has achieved. Most managers feel it would be beneficial to be able to track this progress for company statistics. Encouraging progressional development allows managers to check in with their employees more personally.
By pushing increased communication surrounding career growth, managers and employees will be encouraged to have more regular performance feedback, goal setting and discussions on skill development. This all facilitates managers and employees to align their goals to create a more productive and positive work environment. The main features we thought of were goal setting, skill development, career trajectory, and facilitating feedback.
The application has two perspectives, the manager and the employee’s perspective. We created a few user scenarios to help map out the product.
Using the user flows, we created an information architecture diagram to map the entire application
After figuring out the information architecture, we got pencil and paper and sketched out what each page would look like. We then created mid fidelity wireframes on Figma.
After creating high fidelity designs using our teammate’s branding, we conducted user testing with an employee and a manager to get feedback on our application. We made sure to ask the user to do tasks and asked questions to aide us in figuring out if
General feedback was positive, they found the application features to be interesting and useful but gave suggestions on improving the skills portion and making UI areas more intuitive.
Our final outcome was Arise, a career groth application that aims to enhance the communication between managers and employees by encouraging discussions around career growth and goal-setting in order to facilitate a positive work environment. The key features of Arise include, goal setting, skill development, career trajectory, and facilitating feedback.
Managers will work with employees to realize tangible goals in developing their skills.
Arise allows employees to view potential career pathes and helps them to learn which skills to develop their career.
Understand employees’ value by gaining insight into all their goals, accomplishments, skills and certifications.
This project really cemented the importance of user research. As someone that has not worked long term or been a manager at a company, I would not have been able to assess the pain points that the users had to have. The breadth of people that we interviewed really hammered home and helped us to hone in on what the exact issues are of our users. We even had to pivot the product midway based on our findings to really solve the issues that our users had.
We received a student award by RGD. We won the Nurun Award for User Experience Design in 2021. Thanks to the team that worked with me, Irene Li and Kacey Lee. Another big thank you to the user participants that helped us shape this project.