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Moonshot Pirates

           Mentorship App

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Project description

Moonshot Pirates is an organization that is encouraging young minds to dream big and to walk their own path. Therefore they are organizing bootcamps where young people meet like-minded peers and inspiring experts. They get first hands-on experiences on how to transform an idea into a real project.

After the bootcamp, these motivated young people have no platform where they could connect and receive further guidance. For this reason, Moonshot Pirates are building an Online Mentoring Platform where young motivated people between 14 and 19 years can connect with mentors and likeminded people from around the world.

Duration

8 weeks

(4 hours / day)

My role

I was involved in all steps of the process with focus on the research and UX Design

Team

4 UX Design Bootcamp students

Tools

Figma 

Miro

Draw.io

Pen & Paper

Post-its (a lots of them 😄)

Project goals

To design a prototype of a mentorship app that will encourage young talents from 14 to 19 years old, to learn, find and create a meaningful connection with like-minded individuals and experts in their area of interests. The app should be simple and efficient with strong gamification elements. Mentoring groups should be created out of 4 mentees and 1 mentor that will guide them on their journey.

Research

Research process

At the beginning, the team wanted to get familiar with the mentorship topic. Therefore we started with a competitor and market analysis. We conducted a deeper analysis of 3 mentoring software apps, 3 global online mentoring platforms and 3 offline Austrian mentoring programs. We focused on their way-of-working, features, business model, application process and gamification elements.

Afterwards we defined two main target groups

MENTEES

age 14 – 19

MENTORS

adults that have already participated in different mentorship programs as a mentor

We conducted user interviews with mentees and mentors and created an online survey for mentees. Our goal was to understand their motivation, behavior and pain points. As we already had some assumptions we also tested them.

I conducted two interviews with potential mentees (age 14 & 18) and three interviews with experts that have been mentors in the past. In total, we conducted 7 user interviews and received 38 survey responses.

Key research findings

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MENTEES

  • 85% of teenagers are open to talk about their future with an expert that they personally don`t know

  • They want to discover how mentors became successful and how they found out what they want to do in life

  • They like to collect & share things online

  • They want to have fun! Gamification should be included  from the beginning

MENTORS

  • Good mentor/mentee match is crucial for successful mentoring

  • Networking events and workshops are very important so mentors can connect and learn from each other

  • Written guidance is very valuable, especially for the first time mentors

  • Their motivation to join the mentoring platform: to grow their professional network, to gain new experiences, get to know talented young people (Generation Z) and help them grow

Office

Define & Ideation process

Based on research findings we created two Personas, one for the mentee and one for the mentor. To better understand the user we also prepared a Value Proposition Canvas and a Customer Journey Map. This helped us to keep in mind all the steps, pain points, goals and emotions that the mentee and mentor are going through.

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After many rounds of brainstorming, we decided to focus on the application process as this is essential and the most crucial part of a successful mentorship.

What?
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Application process

Why?
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Successful mentor-mentee match is crucial for a successful mentorship

HOw?
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It need to be easy, fun and efficient. Gamificaton must be included from the beginning.

We decided on four main features that will make the application process easy and fun for the mentees.

  • Personality quiz with funny questions like “What is your superpower?”

  • Creation of an Avatar – this idea was discarded in the later stages to shorten the application process. Our usability test findings also showed that the user wants to see a real photo of the mentor and peers.

  • Swiping through mentors to decide who would you consider being your mentor

  • A speed meeting call to get to know final candidates before making the final decision

1. Application form for basic data:

name, E-Mail, age, language, areas of interest

2. Personality test

e.g. “What is your superpower?”

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3. Creation of

an Avatar

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4. Choose mentors by “swiping”

5. Speed meeting call

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Prototyping & Usability tests

At the beginning we created a paper prototype and conducted the first usability test where we received some very useful insights that we later implemented in our first Low-Fi Prototype in Figma. We tested some of the features with the Lo-Fi Prototype and included the findings in our High-Fi Prototype. After we prepared our High-Fi interactive Prototype we conducted another usability test with participants of the Moonshot Pirates Boot camp via Zoom.  

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Usability Tests

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Prototyping Steps

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Prototype

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Design Solution

Our final design solution for the application process that is easy, fun and efficient contains five steps:

1. Personal data entry

The mentors and mentees enter their name, spoken languages, fields of interest, their gender and location. In addition to this, the mentors need to upload their criminal records and the mentees need to upload a consent form signed by their parents.

2. Personality quiz

A personality quiz for mentees contains playful personality questions & pictorial answers. Usability tests confirmed that this type of personality quiz is fun for the mentees. They also expressed the wish to see the results of the quiz to maybe discover something new about themselves. This functionality can be added at a later stage.

 

In addition mentors must also undergo a psychological test. This was one of the requirements of the Moonshot Pirates to guarantee security for the mentees. A personality quiz and a psychological test should be developed in cooperation with a psychologist.

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3. First selection with swiping feature

Mentees swipe left or right to show if they like or dislike the mentor from the list of pre-selected mentors. Pre-selection is done based on spoken languages, fields of interest, way of working etc. This makes the selection process shorter and easier as they don`t have to check all available mentors or set filter. The algorithm should be created in cooperation with the developers to create a pre-selected list of mentors from a big pool of mentors and mentees with similar interest. Usability tests confirmed that swiping is fun as it reminds them of other apps that they are using.

The profile of the mentor includes a photo, matching score, a short description or job position, languages he speaks, his location, fun fact, a list of top 5 skills, a short bio and a tip to my younger self. Based on the usability tests this information is needed for the mentees to make a decision. The fun fact and the photo create a first personal connection with the mentor. Usability tests rejected our assumption that the order of the mentors and matching score could have a big impact on the mentees decision.

After the mentees finish their selection of mentors, a list is sent to the mentors which includes the mentees that would like to work with them. In case they don`t want to work with certain mentees due to some specific reason they can turn them down.

4. Speed meeting & second selection

Each mentee can schedule a call with a maximum of 4 pre-selected mentors. After the calls, the mentee ranges the mentors from 1 to 4 based on their preferences.

With speed meetings mentees and mentors get the opportunity to create a first personal connection. That allows them to make better decisions with who they would like to work with.

5. Final match

The algorithm will make best possible matches based on the preferences from speed meetings.

Reflection & Next Steps

We succeeded to develop an application process for an efficient match of mentees and mentors with gamification elements that is easy and fun to use.

 

  • I learned that user research and usability testings are essential for developing a successful product.

  • Regular meetings and workshops with stakeholders save time and improve the success rate of the final product.

  • I really enjoyed working in a team. We learned a lot from each other and increased the quality of the product with regular discussions and brainstorming sessions.

 

The next step would be to create a prototype of an efficient working environment that will support mentoring groups to learn, communicate and support each other.

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