I’ll walk through a recent feature addition at Accountingfly that exemplifies how I approach product design.

Step 1: Understanding the Problem
Remote jobs are the future of accounting, yet the Accountingfly site didn’t support them.

I spoke with our 3 most active and engaged remote employers. During my research I learned that remote jobs aren’t as simple as just saying “Anywhere.” Our customers do have the typical fully remote positions but half of our users also have remote jobs where you work from home 99% of the time, but need to live near the office for quarterly and annual meetings.

Step 2: Sketching
All solutions start as a sketch. I get ideas out and on paper to see which ones are or are not working. It’s like how when you start asking someone a question but as you are asking it you realize the answer on your own. Sketching allows you to get to the answer quicker. It takes the act of writing it out or saying it out loud to realize the answer instead of keeping it in your head.

Step 3: Prototyping
Design solutions that make it through the sketching gauntlet are made into simple prototypes that I can then share with customers and teammates.

Step 4: Testing
I sent a few different ideas to our users. After they went through them all, none of the solutions were ideal, but some showed promise. We came to the conclusion that the language was not intuitive and choices were not clear.

Step 5: Iterate
Back to sketches and prototypes I focused on the language of the feature I decided that progressive disclosure was the most intuitive way to help users make the correct decision. 

Step 6: Test Again
I sent the revised version of the prototype to our users, as well as our support team. The updated prototype was well received by users and my team. Now that it was approved, it was put into the backlog for development.