Roadmap (sort of)

I’m pretty pleased with the front end so far - there are probably one or two bugs that we need to sort out - like being able to close the search box, reset the map to the global map, and make the icons a bit easier to click, but I’m pleased with the interface and I’ve had good feedback.

I also watched someone fill in the registration in a hallway usability test, and spotted the following:

  • The company details page asks for the contact name first.  This is confusing since the person I watched started filling in the company name.  It would make sense to put the company first, then the contact details.
  • The company description should probably be renamed because people will try and describe their company (we’ll get bland mission statements and marketing blurb), whereas they should be selling their company office as a great place to visit and work.  Just renaming it probably won’t do, we might need some explanation or help.
  • We probably need some sort of visual clue as to where you are in the registration process - it’s quite a lengthy one (necessarily) so I’d like people to know what step they’re at and how many are left.
  • When it places a marker on the map, it’s too zoomed out - if it gets it wrong it’s not obvious enough.  I think it needs to be zoomed right in at first so that if it hasn’t recognised the address it will be immediately obvious and people will look for a way to fix it (which is easy enough by zooming out and dragging the marker).
  • In the search results we need to underline the company names to make it clear they are links because the person I was watching didn’t click on them.

Where next…

I’m pretty clear on the next steps:

  1. Login and My Account : we need to get registered users logging in and able to update their details.  We can’t really expect people to use it properly without this.
  2. Contact mechanism : just a form at first to contact a company about using their desk PUSH TO GET SOME REAL DESKS LISTEDAt this point, the system will be usable in its most basic form : you can post a desk, and you can find a desk.  We’ve had a lot of interest in it so far, so at this point we should get all of those people who’ve expressed an interest involved and ask them to list their desks.
  3. Ratings : one of the most common concerns expressed by people we’ve spoken to so far is the trustworthiness of the strangers that you invite into your office.  Ratings, reviews and testimonials are therefore a massive priority.  We’ll have to change the registration process for this too, in order to allow non-desk owners to register without listing a desk.
  4. Desk information : we need to allow companies to add multiple desks with pictures of those desks, facilities etc.

Is there anything I’ve missed off?

2 Responses to “Roadmap (sort of)”

  1. Neil Cocker Says:

    “Just renaming it probably won’t do, we might need some explanation or help.”

    You could just say “Describe the desk/space/office”, or “Why your office is ace”….?

  2. Nick Armitage Says:

    I think Neil’s suggestion of “Why your office is ace…” is a great way of making it clearer and the tone of that sits nicely with the friendly image we wish to communicate.

    I have compiled a list of amendments, some which I think are necessary now, and some that are probably more just for consideration in future months.. either way, here they all are. I may have repeated a few things below that you’ve already mentioned in your post above Dave, I typed it last week, so just ignore any repetition!

    It would be a good idea for everyone else to consolidate their thoughts in the comments of this post also so Dave doesn’t have to search around for it all at a later date.

    Flaming Desks tweaks and fiddles!

    - “Welcome” / ”Hello” link - Flaming Desks is a free service that offers you the chance to find and list.. blah..

    Searching for a desk

    - ‘Get directions’ option
    - ‘Zoom to location’ option - to save having to continuously double click/use zoom tool
    - Shouldn’t the ‘Find a desk’ button be the one that changes to the location’s profile as opposed to the ‘List a desk’ one? If you don’t realise it’s been replaced then when you come to listing a desk, you won’t know to close the location description. ‘Register an office’ should remain visible at all times, especially considering that getting people to list is our biggest challenge to date anyway!
    - Contact links on description: Skype, Email, Phone, Company website
    - “Your search returned 0 results” would make unsuccessful searches clearer
    - Really nice that you can register a desk in multiple industries but could we have a similar function in the search? (I.e less specific than ‘Advertising’, but more specific than ‘Any’) - After-thought: Probably far too picky actually!
    - After listing my house (including postcode) when I did a search by postcode (E1 7TB) in ‘Any’ industry, the results zoomed in on Ireland and showed no results however searching for E1 did work
    - Can we filter a search to ‘Anything near to postcode…’
    - Pre-populated search box with greyed out “Town, City, Postcode” would be better than limiting to just a city search and would look nicer than “eg. London, UK” below. (Would save some space also) The Discogs search box looks nice:

    Listing a desk

    - As a freelance graphic designer to search for desks within the entire creative and media industry rather than specifically just a graphic design office would be good. Maybe suggestions of related industries/desks in the area could display if your initial search is unsuccessful? Search results could display “Results” and below display “Related search results”
    - “Other” option for industry?
    - Whilst the photo uploads it would be nice to have a progress bar or something as I though it had crashed!
    - Once the thumbnail becomes visible, it says “undefined” next to it
    - No cropping capability - would be nice if we had some (I know Dave spent a lot of time trying to get technical with it, but even a simple basic form of it would be nice at this stage)
    - “Many thanks, your office is now listed!” message as an overlay and map zoomed in to your desk’s location would be awesome! Would save me from having to then do a manual search to find out if my listing had been successful
    - No “Login” / “View my desks” section so no way of editing my desk once listed

    Additional thoughts for the future
    “My favourite desks” section so you can refer to a list of previous places you’ve been to..?

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