Cimu

Tailor Outreach

Cimu

Tailor Outreach

Nov 2023

OVERVIEW

Allow tailors to reach local users seeking tailoring for online fashion purchases.

Cimu is a student startup that my classmate, Kaci Xie, created in 2020 that helps online fashion retailers reduce returns by connecting shoppers with local tailors. Cimu Tailor Outreach is the mobile interface that tailors would use to manage customer orders after receiving information from said retailers. Cimu is looking to pilot soon with major retailers and so we were tasked with creating an MVP design on a short timeline.

TIMELINE

2 weeks project
Hand-off to engineering

2 weeks project
Hand-off to engineering

MY ROLE

Product Designer

Product Designer

TEAM

Aditya Das, Designer

Kaci Xie, Cimu Founder

PROBLEM

Traditional appointment methods are time-consuming, put more work on the customer and tailor, and don't accomodate information automatically from retailers to the tailors.

Cimu's old method:

1. Receive tailoring request from client

2. Call tailors and ask for availabilities

3. Confirm the appointment via email

4. Rinse and repeat for each order

GOAL

Create a mobile interface that melds Cimu's customer appointment system with a tailor's current practice and improves their ability to monitor orders.

Keeping in mind that tailors already have a labor-intensive business to run, my design goal was to create a straightforward and adoptable app that allows tailors to complete all necessary tasks from booking to pick-up.

RESEARCH

THE USER PROFILE - Cimu's Tailors

Based off Cimu's user interviews and initial pilot of their system w/o an interface there were some clear shared needs and characteristics:

Tailor Profile

Core Needs

  • Detailed tailoring information about the item upfront.

  • Cares about a service that allows them to be flexible time-wise, allowing for cancellations, walk-ins, extensions, and follow-ups.

  • Be able to walk away from the phone and do their job, tailoring!

Behaviors

  • Goes through extreme highs and lows of appointment capacity.

  • Doesn’t often use complicated or high-tech apps in their daily life (older).

  • Might not speak English as their first language.

According to this profile, we identified some pain points and opportunities.

  1. Appointment Demand

    Cimu orders can serve to pad out flux in appointments tailors often face. Thus, tailors also need control over when appointments are being set-up.

  1. Customer Cancellation

    The most frequent obstacle in traditionally-booked appointments were flaky customers. Our design could improve tailor's ability to follow-up.

  1. Clothing Information

    Tailors will be deciding whether to accept customer requests based on what kind tailoring they are seeking. Seeing info async could save time.

COMPETITIVE ANALYSIS - What do the big shots do?

Instead of looking at similar tailoring apps, we looked at other third-party service apps like Uber and DoorDash which have spent extensive time developing worker-facing apps. Two UX choices that stood out to me:

Yesterday

Today

Tomorrow

Easily navigable calendar-based schedule views.

Current

Upcoming

Clear delineation between statuses in the task view.

IDENTIFYING NECESSARY USER ACTIONS & COMMON EDGE CASES

I quickly led an evaluation for what the user journey might be for our app.

Immediately, it became clear to me that the most subjective and complex part of the ideation process would be managing all the shortcuts and updates the "home page" needed to show. "Home page" as a label was a reflection of how we were struggling to separate the actions taking place at this one page. Additionally, there were two main triggers to opening the app: picking up and order and checking-in an appointment.

DISCOVERY INTO IDEATION

These were some questions I tried to keep in mind as I started developing my designs after conducting research.

CLARITY

How can we balance information and visual simplicity?

OPERABILITY

How would these features feel in action in real life?

WIREFRAMES

DIFFERENTIATION BETWEEN ORDERS AND APPOINTMENTS

OAs mentioned earlier, tailors would be using the app to both select new orders and confirm appointments had happened. Because we could only expect users to adopt this app if it didn't interrupt their work flow, I was very focused on testing what information users should immediately see first upon opening. I came up with 2 different approaches.

OPTION #1 - Orders + Appointments (CHOSEN)

CLARITY - Available orders are the first thing seen; in the appointment view the next immediate appointment is always on top.

OPERABILITY - Clear definition between the two views means clearly serves different instances in which tailor would use the app.

OPERABILITY - Not necessarily clear that accepted orders from the orders page go to the appointments page.

OPTION #2 - General Dashboard + Calendar

FLEXIBILITY - A more diverse home page allows for a more flexible range of important information and users can expect to check for all updates on this page.

CLARITY - Clearer schedule view that is easy to glance it.

CLARITY - Home page is also more crowded and specific information could become more difficult to locate.

OPERABILITY - Three card button actions off of home page is alot and could lead to mispresses and confusion.

REFINING & ITERATING

After we decided the general framework, I created some more iterations with greater attentional to detail in terms of which smaller features were most communicative and intuitive. Ultimately we ran with the design that we felt embodied "assistant to the tailor" the most and the rest drew attention away from this model.

OPTION #1

  • Top bar is descriptive but hard to reach with hands.

  • Hamburger menu can store a lot but tends to be vague.

OPTION #2

  • Added earnings and profile icons.

  • Shifted order/appointment bar to bottom for ease of access.

OPTION #3

  • No hamburger menu for clarity's sake.

  • Top toggles between views, bottom tool bar goes between profile etc.

OPTION #4 (Best)

  • Earnings incorporated into profile icon.

  • Simple view toggle at the bottom where it's easiest to reach.

  • We preferred this one for the simplicity it afforded an MVP.

FEEDBACK

WHAT CIMU THOUGHT

I presented a first-round high-fidelity design to Cimu for the home pages. Here I was focused on more realistically reflecting information that would need to be shown and account for all scenarios. For example would tailors still need to be able to see orders, even if they had been cancelled?

Clear welcome message indicating which account

Changed 'accept' and 'reject' to see more because of the tight screen space

Different inactive/completed order statuses.

Added a pending status for orders that had just been scheduled and needed custom confirmation

Added a review button for order info; wanted tappable action to be explicit to the user

Added a review button for order info; wanted tappable action to be explicit to the user

Day to day calendar view; different visual statuses for appointments that happened, current appointment, and future appointments.

We went over what was and wasn't working and came up with some corrections:

  1. Scalability

    Depending on how many orders a tailor might be dealing with, the order page could be difficult to scroll through.

  1. Scheduling

    Eliminate a pending status and allow customers to choose times (but allow for vaguer blocks or walk-ins) before tailor accepts.

  1. Pickups

    Pickups don't have to happen on a specific day and don't need to be attached to date.


  1. Appointments

    Clear cut calendar might not adapt well to slots that run over-time or appointments that need follow ups.

Ideally here we would've also had some user interviews with tailors. Adhering to Cimu's schedule, they plan to test these designs while they're building the app and then changes can be made. However, Cimu's familiarity with their tailors was an asset that provided a lot of insight for us.

FINAL TAKEAWAYS

CUTTING OUT SCHEDULING STRUGGLES

Cimu provides a mostly automated appointment process that onlyy requires the tailor to review their workload and approve. Tailors also provide a quote for pricing (not shown).

Step 1

Open next upcoming order from Cimu. Most recent previously accepted orders are below.


Separated background allows for better differentiation

Step 2

Scroll through alteration request and pictures from customer. Decide to accept.


Slide up modal makes it easier to accept orders on the fly and return to home

Step 3

Accepted appointment automatically appears in calendar at next available slot. Confirmation also appears in accepted orders.


Pickups are not date dependent and will carry over to next day if not confurmed.

APPOINTMENT STATUSES

I changed the calendar to become more simplified, favoring large cards that emphasis information for each appointment and allows more room to confirm pickups. This design takes advantage of the fact that there are not that many appointments in a day compared to something like food orders.

Appointment card variations

  • Before appointment

  • After arrival

  • After appointment

  • If slot is cancelled or rescheduled

Appointment Review

This card is similar to what the user sees when they pickup and order but most noticeably there are additional actions that allow a tailor to alter an appointment on their own (re-schedule, create a follow-up, cancel, etc.)

NEXT STEPS

As this was a short project, there many aspects of the design that can be improved.

User testing

The best way to improve these designs, and I hope to do so in the near future with Cimu is to test these designs with the tailors and get their feedback. In doing so we can spot common mistakes and prevent user confusion.


Archived order information

Work on how to show order information that is much older and perhaps a stats analytics view for tailors to understand their work flow and trend towards success.