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Actions on Google (Interaction Design)

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Overview

Project: Design the user experience for Actions on Google and help developers build for the Google Assistant.

Skills Developed: Requirement gathering, competitive analysis, sketching, high-fidelity prototyping, cross-functional collaboration.

 

***This project is subject to a non-disclosure agreement.***

 

The Project

This summer internship project focused on designing the user experience for Actions on Google - the tool that helps developers build for the Google Assistant. The Google Assistant is on Google Home, supported Android Phones, and iPhones. I worked closely with user experience researchers, designers, project managers, and engineers to implement designs.

The Process

Understanding the Product

I started out by understanding the product by reading existing documentation, meeting with multiple stakeholders, and performing a competitive analysis. Another key aspect to understanding the product was to use it myself. I developed a test application to understand the user journey.

Designing for the User

I considered different approaches - starting out with a broad range of ideas with multiple low-fidelity sketches. I presented these sketches during design reviews, conversations with project managers, and research to gather feedback.

Sketching

The feedback from multiple stakeholders solutions the base for the next phase - sketching. Here, I sketched out detailed workflows for each possible solution. I continued to get feedback through design reviews and iterate over my sketches till I narrowed down to one solution.

High-fidelity UI Mocks

I created high-fidelity UI Mocks for the chosen solution and worked with engineers on the implementation of the design.

User Testing

I collaborated with user experience researchers on the team to create a usability test script for user testing. The research team conducted a usability test with 8 different participants to gather feedback about my design. This feedback was essential in validating some of my design hypothesis and I was able to update my designs to fulfil the needs of our users. Furthermore, I documented and shared my design decisions to establish a baseline for future designers.

Key Takeaways

  1. There is nothing like too much feedback: I learnt that it was critical to involve and communicate design decisions with cross-functional teams. This early communication provides valuable insights from different perspectives and ensures everyone is on the same page.

  2. You are not your user: This is the easiest mistake to make while designing. Since I have a software development background and I was working on a developer console, I often had to stop myself from thinking “this is how the user would behave”. Communication and collaboration with UX research helped me in getting a better understanding of our users.