Calendact

A performer to business solution

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Role

Product Designer

Tools

Pen and Paper

Figma

Duration

01/2022 - 05/2022

Entertainment simplified

The process of finding an act to perform at an event can be daunting, even for  experienced booking managers. A common concern for those involved in the booking process is the ever increasing amount of applications used in the process, from emails and messages to social media profiles, and websites. Calendact is designed to combine all aspects of the booking process in one, simplified platform, with an emphasis on a calendar application. 

Embedded Responsive Calendar

Stylish and efficient workflow

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Social Business Cards

All the necessary information an entertainment booker needs, in one place

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Intuitive Messaging

Smart, calendar focused messaging

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Understanding the Challenge

The core of the challenge was to simplify the process of booking acts for businesses. This would prove challenging as 'simplifying' wasn't as easy as creating a simple UI and the research would be difficult to conduct in light of Covid-19. What resulted was an account based system in which the 'simplifying' came from the information that artists provided to streamline the communication aspect of a booking. 

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Research

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Ideate

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Hi Fi

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Iterate

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Evaluation

Surveying

Competitive Analysis

Storyboarding

Personas

Paper wireframes

Userflow

Digital Wireframes

Usability test

Pattern Identification

Identifying Themes

Hi-Fi Digital Protoype

Iterate Design

Reflection​

Next Steps

 

Research

Survey

The survey consisted of seven concise questions focusing on the current struggles of booking. I wanted to keep the questions revolved around the current frustrations to keep the participant from assuming an application would fix these problems. This way I was able to develop a fuller understanding of their frustrations that applications are not solving. 

A retrospective analysis showed that an in person interview would have been more beneficial to understand their dilema. I could have observed some of their current booking set ups and calendar applications, as well as observed physical responses to the questions.

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Competitive Analysis

The competitive analysis looked at four different booking softwares popularily offered online. The most significant competitor would be SimplyBook, whose software was marketed towards more corporate businesses with a robust filter of potential acts and venues.

Story Boarding

To summarize the applications potential, and to synthesize the information I gathered, I created a storyboard to visualize the users context in which the applicartion may be used. 

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Ideation

Personas

Two personas were created to guide the user journey:

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Paper Wireframes

Paper wire frames were focused on the homepage. The first thing the user should see is what they went there for, the calendar. Next, the user needed fast navigation between 2-3 pages to make the application an intentionally efficient design. I adopted the bottom navigation bar, switched to the hamburger, and ultimately decided on the bottom navigation again due to its notably more efficient design. 

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User Flow

The application had to be simple, so the user flow was designed with this in mind. 

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Digital Wireframes

Finally, the digital wireframes were constructed and went through many iterations before landing on a general idea. 

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Testing

A usability test was conducted with five participants on the usability of the low fidelity design. Common themes that came up were better filtering options, a more focused calendar, a more defined navigation, and further development of the profile feature. 

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Hi-Fidelity Design

Here are a few of the highlights of the hi-fidelity design, showcasing the main contributions the application can have to an improved workflow for booking acs

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Simplistic indicator of date that has been booked to minimize clutter

Bottom navigation to ensure efficient movement between tasks

Calendar homepage brings focus to time management 

 
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An act booked multiple dates is represented by a combined indicator

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Adding an act to the calendar is minilistic and requires an active account

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Intuitive date editing with swipe features

Account to account messaging service limits the number of applications used in communications

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Monthly viewing reveals the number of acts booked on each month for quick reference

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Lastly, the profile cards contain all the information a booker or a promoter requires from an act including their stage rider and media which are typically found in a variety of means (sent by email, website, social media). The profile cards are likely the most attractive feature to promoters as the most lengthy part of the booking process is gathering the entertainment package.

Evaluation

Reflection

The process to the final product had a few learning moments:

| The Importance of Planning

The initial survey was composed in a matter of a few minutes. Drawing from my own experience as a performing artist, I unknowingly inputted my own bias in assuming I already knew what a booker would need. This caused the initial research to not fully define what the problem was and how I was intending to solve it. 

| Defining the End User

The initial idea was to create an application for small venue owners and performing artists to communicate with each other, however with two end users in mind, the problem became complex. The result was to redefine the application and subsequently the end user. This subsequently helped to create an application that would be more likely used by a certain user (corporate acts and bookers as opposed to small venues and general performing artists). However, if I had defined the user more thoroughly from the beginning, certain headaches may not have risen.

 

| Create a Robust Protoype

This seems obvious in retrospect, but a few issues with user flow in the usability test confused the participants preventing me from receiving proper feedback. What seemed intuitive to me, in terms of getting stuck or lost, was not so for the participants. To have an effective test, the protoype needs to be completed to its fullest. 

Next Steps

As this was my first design, it took a lot of focus and effort to get this far, however I'm not done yet!

I'd like to continue refining the "Browse Acts" section and find more appealing ways to present filtering and browsing.

 

I would also like to find more creative ways to present the UI. At the moment, the UI is fairly uninteresting, possibly a bit old school, so a more polished look may help promote it.

 

Lastly, I would explore API's such as Bandcamp and Google Calendar to incorporate more familiar applications to solve the problem found in the survey that too many applications are being used in the booking process. Am I contributing to that problem or solving it? It's a good question...  

Thank you!

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