BRIDGE
SAIC Career Expo App to Prepare and Connect
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Type and Timeline
Product Design
Sept - Oct 2019
My Role
(Solo Project) User Research, Ideation,
Visual Design, UI/UX, and Prototyping.
Tools
Sketch, Invision, and Origami
The School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC) Internship + Career Expo is an annual flagship program that brings together leading employers and representatives from creative organizations throughout Chicago for students.
Context
As an attendee of the previous year’s internship fair, I emphasize alternatives to approach issues one could possibly encounter in the next Expo. This was a solo case study where I utilized user research and visual design tools to render the best high fidelity and viable product.
By understanding the nature of the program from the Career and Professional Experience (CAPX) office as well as conducting a survey to undergrads, I investigated the scope for this case study.
Problem
In past SAIC Expo events, there was little awareness of event details; what employers were attending, and how to prepare or follow up with respective attendees.
Solution
Bridge is a career tracking and oversight tool that helps employers and students to discover and seek new talent and opportunities tailored to their needs, as well as an organizational guide to track interests and applicants to encourage follow up communication.
This tool is a mobile app to facilitate organization on the student’s end and can be ready at hand during the event.
User Research
CAPX had emphasized that they seek to utilize online spaces for students to connect with employers. The following quote is what CAPX expects of the employers:
“Communicate with the students that their first responsibility is to listen to see if the job is relevant to their experience.
Second, they should then either share their relevant experience or politely exit the conversation saying it's not the right fit for their skill set.”
Poll research results with 71 responses from undergrad SAIC students, varying from all the BFA (Bachelor's of Fine Arts departments.
Here are the testimonials from both Graduate and Undergraduate students from various departments.
2nd year grad student
Sound and Performance
“I ended up going last year and did not feel like I found job opportunities catered to my discipline. Since we are such an multidisciplinary school, I feel like pursuing a career involves in a compromise
3rd year undergrad student
SCULPTURE
“I wish I could review the employers ahead of time and submit my resume online instead of printing out physical copies of a resume to hand off to the employers. I never really got an email back from any of them.”
1st year grad student
PHOTOGRAPHY
“When I went I felt like I wasted my time talking to random employers who don’t offer paid positions. As an international student, I worry that I won’t find a job that will provide a sponsorship."
1st year undergrad student
VISUAL COMMUNICATIONS AND PHOTOGRAPHY
“Since I’m a freshman I feel like I don’t belong in this event. I want to get ahead in my career and find internships but don’t know where to start nor do I have a prepared portfolio website or gallery.
User Personas
HEART Framework
To layout the foundation of user research expanding across five points of product viability and metrics, the HEART framework seemed to be the most appropriate model to communicate what the stakeholders need. This dynamic research framework has been derived from Google's research team.
Competitive Analysis
Currently, SAIC utilizes Handshake as the main career university resource. According to Product Hunt, WayUp was the other competitor. By analyzing these two products, the heuristics can be applied to the screen ideation.
Visual Design
The conception of the bridge icon was derived from the Chicago bridges across River North nearby SAIC. The employers from the 2018 Career Expo were mostly from the River North area which was what contributed to the concept along with having personally walking across these bridges to commute to my first internship from the fair. This bridge also serves as a utility of support, which epitomizes the product brand identity.
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(c) 2020 Renaise Kim