Bringing the human back to human resources.
Talent Hatched (previously Work In Industry Now) is a startup based in San Antonio, TX currently participating in the 2021 Geekdom incubator. The Talent Hatched app aims to disrupt the current HR process by removing the need for paper resumes and cover letters. Talent Hatched brings back the human factor through onboarding and matches students with paid experiential learning opportunities.
▪️ Helped define MVP
▪️ Helped the company rebrand
▪️ Designed app prototype for applicants
▪️ Participated in Q2 pitch to stakeholders
▪️ Designed admin and employer accounts
May 2021 - ongoing
▪️ Kirsten Gord - Product Designer
▪️ Sandra Gonzalez-Lamb - Founder
▪️ Karen Li - Developer
I can't show you all of my work, but let me tell you about some challenges.
Talent Hatched is a responsive web app consisting of 4 user accounts: Applicants, Administrators (schools or organisations helping people to find jobs), Employers, and a Superuser account. I have been involved in the research and planning of the entire product including conducting interviews and surveys, creating personas, user journeys, user flows, and designing the UI. This project is still under development and falls under a NDA. Unfortunately, I can't share all of my hard work with you but I would like to share some of the challenges we have faced and how we have overcome them.
How we tackle the challenge of communication across 3 cities and 2 timezones.
With the team in three different cities and two different countries with opposing timezones, communication and collaboration has been a challenge. We have a weekly Zoom meeting and the rest of the week we use Slack. We use Asana to keep track of tasks and stay accountable. Very detailed documentation in Figma makes collaboration easier and we keep our Slack channels organised. Effective communication, even with these challenges, has kept us on task and on track to meet our deadlines.
How we rose to the challenge of redefining the MVP after the unexpected departure of the Chief Technology Officer.
In May of 2021, I joined Work In Industry Now and I was tasked with creating a design prototype for the Q2 presentation in early July. I began designing for a backend program that used AI/machine learning to match potential skill sets with paid learning opportunities.
Three weeks before the Q2 presentation, the CTO, and back-end developer, quit the incubator and left us with no code and no algorithm. The design up to that point relied on the assumption that machine learning would be involved in the matching process.
It was a disaster.
Did we give up? No way! Crisis often leads to opportunity. We put on our superwoman capes and figured it out.
We had a gruelling 3 hour product meeting where we rethought our strategy and redefined our MVP. Karen, our front-end developer, agreed to go full-stack. We left the meeting with a sharper vision and a better product.
I spent the next 3 weeks redesigning the prototype for the Applicant account while Sandra, the founder, spent countless hours practicing our pitch. Needless to say, we smashed it. The investors loved the pitch and one of them even offered to participate in our pilot.
Taking the opportunity to create a brand that fit our vision.
The departure of the CTO meant the company had to dissolve and rebrand. We took the opportunity to create a brand that fit our vision and tied us to our roots. Karen came up with the name Talent Hatched, inspired by a bird's nest that had appeared outside her front door. It embodies our goal of nurturing untapped talent and potential skillsets in students and people looking to change careers. It is also a shoutout to our challenging start as a company.
Creating a logo that celebrates new talent, ties us to our roots, and tells a great story.
We had a long brainstorming session around the new logo. We struggled to decide on whether to use wings or an egg for the icon. Sandra advocated for a "cascarón", a traditional Mexican confetti egg used during "Fiesta" in San Antonio. I was skeptical because what she described and sketched had too many colours and felt too busy. She insisted that it would tie Talent Hatched back to its roots in San Antonio and we all felt that the idea told a great story. So I spent many many hours trying to figure out how to make it work. In the end, I went super simple (which I find works very well the majority of the time!). The logo is black and white with a burst of colourful confetti coming out of a cracked egg. It feels like a celebration, it shows our roots, and it has a great story.
Inspiration - "cascarónes"
What I have created so far.
A few artefacts I have been authorised to share.
Mapping out survey logic in Miro
A snapshot of the design system in progress
A little look at the interactions for the applicant account prototype
In the real world, the design process is not always linear. When I joined the team there was already a very short window before the Q2 pitch. Then we had to completely redesign again. I had to be flexible with my design process initially. After the successful Q2 pitch I was able to do more research to back up my designs and made changes accordingly.
Know my strengths and set boundaries.
Startups have a lot of jobs to be done. In the beginning, I agreed to help out with lots of things that fell outside of my design role. I soon realised that this was taking away from my ability to do my best job as a designer. I learned that it's ok to ask for help and to not be afraid to have a conversation about workload and responsibilities. Being honest about what you can and can't do helps create trust within the team and means I can do a great job a what I am best at, designing.
Ideate, share, update, repeat.
Initially, I spent hours trying to get my design perfect before I shared it with the team. I soon realised that it was much more efficient to share my ideas early, get feedback, and update accordingly. Design should always be collaborative.