Making an early-stage startup's onboarding experience more intuitive and trustworthy.

A Promising Product

Lucidata offers quick and accurate personality tests that allow companies and career consultants to build better teams. Think Myers-Briggs and CliftonStrengths, but easier and more accurate.

Lucidata has two groups of users - the “testers” who take the assessments and gain insights, and the “advisors” who purchase the assessments from Lucidata for their employees.

Lucidata's CEO asked for my help with issues they were starting to see in the product.

The Problem

Lucidata was becoming a “one-and-done” service, and their growth was slowing down.

Testers weren’t utilizing all of Lucidata’s offerings, even with the time they were investing in taking the assessment. Additionally, testers would lose their results if they didn't set a password after completing the assessment. Advisors would have to re-administer the assessment, wasting time and resources.

This led me to wonder... how might we eliminate friction points in Lucidata’s onboarding experience to increase conversions and retention?

Discovering Pain Points

I started by conducting user interviews to fully understand how these problems are affecting both testers and advisors.

Information Gathering

I asked in-depth questions about their experiences with Lucidata and how it compares to competitors.

Contextual Interviews

I asked testers to walk though the assessment and onboarding, thinking aloud as they go.

Affinity Mapping

I found common themes in the qualitative data - customer goals, perceptions, and pain points.
Here are some highlights from my research.
"Do I have to make an account to see my results? Why am I doing this?"
After taking the assessment, testers are prompted to set a password.

But there was no context - the participants wondered why a password was needed.

Some participants were tempted to abandon the process altogether.
"Unless I clicked into each one, I wouldn't know what each report is or what it contains."
There are no descriptions for the reports on the dashboard. Participants were going back and forth between reports, trying to find the right one.

Additionally, the dropdowns do not make efficient use of screen space. Reports are simply stacked on top of each other, and take up a fraction of the width of other, less important elements on the dashboard.
The problems continued on the backend of the site with advisors.

"When that happened, it made me pause a little, and my confidence level dropped."

Advisors recalled having to "rescue" testers who didn't finish their onboarding - many testers had to retake the assessment to get their results.

"Right now, I'd have to go through each client's report and parse the data myself."

Synthesizing results for teams is an arduous process, making advisors hesitant to use the product with high-profile clients.
I created a comprehensive research report for the team, going over all of my findings, competitor analysis, and creating a roadmap for moving forward.


During my research, internal stakeholders uncovered some constraints with Lucidata’s back-end.

The biggest constraint involved the Advisor Hub - housed on a rigid WordPress system, improving the behind-the-scenes workflow for advisors wouldn't be financially feasible. There are plans to upgrade to a custom-made system down the line, but until then, nothing can be changed.

With this in mind, I focused on improving the front-end in a way that prevents the common issues for advisors in the back-end.

Ideating & Wireframing

With everything I discovered through research and conversations with the team, I identified 4 key objectives for my redesign.

Evoke a sense of trust.

Incorporate context and calls-to-action at critical conversion points to keep users informed.

Highlight the content.

Eliminate obstacles between users and Lucidata's diverse content offerings.

Make it responsive.

Develop a cohesive and accessible component library for seamless adaptation to mobile screens.

Make it feasible.

Preserve the core structure of the dashboard to expedite the implementation of the new design.
Guided by those objectives, I created some wireframes in Whimsical, where I started building out solutions for the core issues found in my research with testers.


After feedback from stakeholders, I combined solutions from my wireframes with the styles and structure of the current site to create a working prototype.
I gathered feedback from internal stakeholders and moved forward with a revised plan for the final prototype.

One of the things they suggested was removing the Anicon from the dashboard, due to low adoption by advisors and testers. But this left a lot of unused space at the top of the dashboard, so I needed to find a workaround.

Moving into revisions, I pushed myself to think outside the box, in terms of the solutions themselves and the way I was designing them. I explored using nested auto-layout components to efficiently animate the dropdowns, something I’d never tried before.

The Solution

With the revised prototype, Lucidata's onboarding provides testers with a clean and contextualized interface, while respecting the limitations of the site's structure.
Look through the before-and-after's below!


I handed off the design to Lucidata's stakeholders, but further testing and implementation has been put on hold.

If I’d had more time and resources, I would’ve expanded the user testing to more users. I also would’ve worked with stakeholders to develop a more cohesive content strategy for Lucidata’s reports.

Regardless, this was a really fulfilling project. As someone fascinated by psychology, I really enjoyed diving deep into this problem space. I also broadened my horizons by learning and incorporated new design methods, and I can't wait to explore them further in future projects.

Throughout the process, I found value in...

Understanding (& embracing) limitations

I ran into quite a few roadblocks, but was able to pivot towards better business solutions through close collaboration and an open mind.

Being relentlessly resourceful

I read up on best practices for onboarding, and continually optimized my designs with newly-learned techniques, like nested auto-layout components.

Keeping it simple, stupid!

Aligning customer needs with business goals can be tricky, but I found the balance by focusing on core features and simple implementation.

"Working with Jacob was a pleasure. Through his careful, detailed research and dedication to his craft, he created a new design that will surely streamline our user experience."

Curt Buermeyer
CEO, Lucidata

Thanks for reading!

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