Accelerating Product Development with a Design System and AI

Overview

This case study chronicles my experience as Head of Digital for Shuddle, a newly launched intergalactic transportation network.

I accelerated the development of three products by using a product-thinking and human-centered approach. I worked with Chat GPT as my AI co-pilot.

The Shuddle products

Background

I was brought in as the Head of Digital for the newly launched Shuddle (formerly IPTS) with the goal of developing three unique products: Shuddle World, Shuddle Visit, and Shuddle Rail. Each product serves a distinct purpose within the company's overall strategy to revolutionize transportation between worlds.

My Role

With undefined responsibilities and a small team, I embraced a product-thinking and human-centered approach to address leadership’s goals. This included identifying and executing key business initiatives, understanding target users, and creating tailored solutions for each product.

My Co-Pilot

In the rapidly evolving AI landscape I decided to use Chat GPT as an AI assistant, to generate business value faster, and to harness its powerful capabilities in research, ideation, and problem-solving.

Challenge

Leadership asked me to advance the development of our three products as much as possible for the next two weeks. This required quick decision-making, creative problem-solving, and efficient use of available resources.

Solution

I focused on several key aspects throughout the project. These included designing the main interfaces, creating a design system, ideating features, conducting market research, planning user research, and outlining a product design strategy.

Results and Impact

The groundwork is now set to begin collecting user feedback, start product development, strategize with leadership, and continue leading with a product design vision. These insights and plans will help us refine our offerings and ensure they resonate with our target audience.

Outlining the Challenge

With a limited short amount of time I opted to prioritize initiatives based on paths of least resistance. Focusing on work with minimum dependencies that could deliver the most objective business value.

Delivering Immediate Value

I prioritized the design of IPTS.org as it would require less user generated data and allow us to move the dial quicker. I focused on page layout and structure, developing a light-weight design system in tandem. Then with the help of Chat GPT I generated compelling headlines and engaging content for our informational website.

Starting a Design System

With reusability and efficiency in mind I started a light-weight UI design kit. I established a type ramp, color palette, and added re-usable components. I also started a reference site to serve as a live example of the design system in action.

Reference Site

Ideating with the Design System

After researching similar product offerings and leveraging the re-usable components of our design system, I ideated on the main interfaces and features for Shuddle Visit and Shuddle Ride.

Re-Brand

Midway through the project, a rebrand took place, transitioning from IPTS to Shuddle. A new brand identity was delivered by an external agency, featuring a fresh, vibrant color palette and welcoming, youthful imagery to create a more inviting atmosphere.

Evolving the Design System

I integrated the new brand identity into the products, updating the UI design kit and reference site to reflect the brand's new direction. This ensured a cohesive visual language across all product touchpoints.

Updated Reference Site

Learn, Build, and Measure

As more qualitative and quantitative data was collected, I continued iterating on ours products.

Product and Market Research

I utilized Chat GPT to conduct research, including competitive analysis, trend analysis, and gathering valuable data points to inform product development.

Core Product

After assessing the potential economic impact of each product, we decided to prioritize Shuddle Visit as the core product and switch product names to streamline our offerings. This decision was based on factors such as market size, growth potential, and the unique value proposition that the product offered to our target users, making it the most attractive option economically.

Product Market Fit

We identified key market segments, including Adventurous Luxury Travelers, Space Enthusiast Luxury Travelers, and Retired Luxury Travelers.

User Research

To better understand our target users and their needs, we developed a comprehensive survey and a user interview script. These tools will allow us to gather valuable insights on user preferences, motivations, and pain points, which will inform the design and features of our products.

Metrics to Measure

We are exploring relevant KPIs such as user engagement, conversion rates, customer satisfaction, and user retention to evaluate the success of our products and inform future improvements.

Outcome

We have enough to start the development of the products, and we can begin collecting user feedback through surveys and user interviews to further refine our offerings and enhance the user experience.

Learnings

Improved my design system skills, finding the balance between product strategy, agile development, and design documentation.

Mastered the art of prompting Chat GPT for optimal results in a variety of scenarios, leading to faster and more effective decision-making.

Fast decision-making and creative problem solving is about being thoughtful with your projects, sacrifices, and tooling.

Conclusion

In conclusion, this case study demonstrates the power of combining a product and human-centered approach, a design system, and cutting-edge AI technology.

With Chat GPT as my AI co-pilot, I was able to accelerate the development of Shuddle's products and create solutions that cater to the needs and desires of our target users. This experience highlights the potential of AI-assisted decision-making and its ability to generate significant business value.

Posted on Apr 10, 2023

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