Having worked as a UI/UX designer with Information Management Group, IIT Roorkee, I have lead the product vision, took key design decisions, designed UX flows, visuals and implemented them by working closely with the engineering team. Also, I have mentored and closely worked with a team of talented designers while working on Channel i.
Channel i was always centered around apps and there was a lot of activity being done on these apps by a diverse community of students and faculties but it was not organised in a useful manner. When I started redesigning Channel i, I placed it around people rather than apps so that it offers a more dynamic experience and decided to make use of the activity done on various apps by presenting it in an organised and useful manner.
Our first step in this direction was to build a people-centric newsfeed that gives you updates of activity done on various apps.
Earlier, people used various apps on Channel i but that information didn't come to the fore. For example - If a student reported on Lost and Found app that he has lost his bag in the campus, nobody would know about it unless they were a frequent visitor of Lost and Found app. To make this information visible, we decided to introduce Newsfeed - A simple way to know about every activity on all the apps right at your homepage. When you click on a feed item, it takes you to the app it came from.
Shows all the upcoming events in the campus and public holidays. Users get email reminders before all events. Campus groups can add events and posters. People can filter events using various labels and create their own task list as well.
Different campus groups get a page to represent themselves. They can edit their group info, post important updates and add events which would be visible to all students.
In settings, people can edit their profile, change profile picture, manage email preferences and keep their account secure by managing sessions.
Earlier, there was no help center in Channel i and students had to contact us via other means for any issues or questions. When we decided to build a help center as a part of the new Channel i, we knew that we couldn't have a static help center with articles and FAQs. We knew that it was meant to help the students of a college and their issues and queries were time-specific.
We decided to build a 1 - 1 chat for help. If any student had a question, he could just shoot us a quick message and we would reply promptly. It worked for us because of the fixed number of our users. It helped make support feel more human and direct and it helped us be more empathatic towards our users.
Since it's launch, many components of Channel i have changed and we have been iterating on the product continuously to make it better.
When we built the newsfeed, it acted as a bridge between different apps and people. People could see relevent information without having to look for it. This taught me what impact properly organised information can have on people's lives.
How you treat your users, how empathatic you are towards them defines user experience as much as a well built product.
You don't want to build a vacuum cleaner that can also make you coffee. It's okay to kill features and products that don't add value. It helps you focus.