Pepper Money is a specialist lender in the Financial Services industry, based in London and Cardiff, in the UK. Pepper are merging with Optimum Credit to become a bigger specialist lender in both first charge and second charge mortgage spaces.
I’m a UX Designer in a team with the Head of UX, Digital Designers and Developers.
I started working for Optimum Credit / Pepper Money in June 2019, first as a UX Developer, and now as a UX Designer. Here’s some of my achievements at Optimum Credit / Pepper Money:
Created a system to be used by Brokers for business services.
For the first year, I was working on a project to be used by Brokers and our staff alike to quote and service loans from our business to our customers. I created a component library and was a key part of the UX process.
Introduced the Government Design Principles.
I implemented the Government Design Principles to our designs to keep everyone in the team to the same set of standards.
Created a lead management system.
But more on that below…
My goal for the project was to create a system whereby our internal staff could manage leads for our second charge business. They wanted the system to be simple and easy to use.
The system needed to be effective in several areas. It needed to show staff in an easily digestible way, which leads were the most urgent and which were least urgent based on SLAs. The system also needed to house contact information for the leads and be able to have information entered with scheduling features for internal staff to mark against leads.
We want to create something where new staff don’t have to do much learning on the system to grasp it.
Customers are inevitably busy and we want to be giving them the best service at all times. A clunky system will be slow and harm this goal.
I wanted to create something that our internal staff can use for years to come.
Starting the process
The first step of my user research was to understand exactly what type of research I was going to do, especially given we had limited time to come up with a solution for this.
Seeing as our users were internal staff, I wanted to use the opportunity to learn more about their needs of the system, how it would be used and how it would fit into their existing processes. I spoke with the Retail team to gather their thoughts, ideas and requirements for the system before doing anything else. This hit the “Start with User Needs” aspect of the UK Government’s Design Principles.
Using the principles of Jakob’s Law, I went about looking at platforms that did similar things in different markets. I checked other lead management software to look at what they did right, what they did wrong and how we can improve the experience for our users.
If I had more time, what would I do next time?
Unfortunately, the scope of the User Research wasn’t quite as much as I’d have liked going into the project. But, if I got the chance with more time to do it again, I would:
I wanted to get a feel in a low fidelity way, of which solutions might work best for our internal users for the project, before we started hi-fi prototyping. We have two main pages of the lead management system, but different scenarios in the requirements. I wanted to get a feel of what the internal team liked and what they wanted to see going forward.
Once I had the low-fidelity wireframes in place, I workshopped with our internal teams to find the best solution moving forward. We settled on an approach after long discussions on the benefits and drawbacks to each. Once this was done, I wanted to move into high fidelity wire framing and iterative design.
One more helpful feature
After requirements were finalised, we came to these workshops and the internal team realised they wanted to add a feature to schedule calls on the system. However, when I considered what this would mean, I proposed a different solution. I proposed that we add a feature to add the appointment to their calendar, instead of on the system. Here’s why:
The programmes feature is due to go live on the sidekick app shortly in June or July 2021.
I’m now focused on what happens next. When it goes live, we’ll be looking to have a regular feedback loop with the internal team due to use the systems to manage leads. We’ll send out regular surveys, shadow the staff and do user testing to understand where we are going wrong, what we are doing right and how we can improve going forward.