One of the most powerful lessons that I learned while interning at Fidelity Investments was the power of designing by placing yourself in the shoes of your demographic. Whether you fall within the target audience or not, setting yourself up for an empathetic approach serves as an excellent reminder that people come in with their own unique experiences. Understand this, in turn, sets you up to be designing to fulfill their needs, so that they can easily adopt your solution into their daily lives.
This mindset in my workflow enabled me to design a web application that responds to a need to educate millennials on replaying student loans. My motivation? I was fast approaching graduation and I didn’t know much else besides having a grace period of six months before repayment kicks in. What I knew without a doubt was that anytime I had to log into my loan provider’s website, I got really stressed out and overwhelmed. Fitting into my own target audience helped me consider all of the features of the product that I would be most prone to using, and discarding the rest.
Loan Control is a tool that serves three needs: to inform, organize, and manage student loans. Targeting young adults ages 18-24, the site opens up a dialogue between a unnamed narrator and the user. The tone is kept light and casual, as a method to alleviate the expected dismay of the issue of understanding your financial situation. The experience is broken down in digestible fragments, with the overarching theme being reassurance. Reassurance that you can understand, and that you can break it down and pay it off.
In order to showcase all of the features of the app, I designed a promotional website to introduce the tool and provide a mock source to download it. I also got to exercise my front-end skills with this project, and had fun experimenting with interactive storytelling through a single scrolling experience.