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Context

Un-doi Centru de plăți is a financial services & technology company. As part of their business, they offer a B2C mobile app and a B2B distribution network of over 6.500 partners all over Romania. 

 

Their services range from:

  • Utility Bill payments 

  • SIM card top-ups  

  • Car insurance

  • Vignettes for Romania & Hungary

  • Tax payments 

Time frame: 2019 - Ongoing

My roles: Product Designer, Product Manager

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Rebranding

At the inception of the project in 2019, we fully rebranded the client's image to position themselves in the competitive market with their app. 

By taking into consideration their vision & analysing the competitive landscape we concluded that we needed a brand communicating

  • Innovation 

  • Sleekness

  • Elegance yet playfullness

  • Calm & Trustworthy

In creating the brand, I was inspired by leaders in the mobile banking field such as Revolut, Monzo & Apple's phone backgrounds filled with gradients & glassmorphism. 

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UX research

In order to create a utility bill experience, I had to fully immerse myself in:

  • How users pay their bills month by month

  • How they feel at different stages of their experience 

  • How they perceive utility bill suppliers in Romania 

  • Their pain points with their current payment habits 

To fully grasp the field & understand where un-doi stood in the market, I have conducted extensive: 

  • Competitor/ Market research 

  • Initial Needs assessment 

From research I concluded that

  • Romanians hated to pay their bills (economic reasons, system deficiencies, suppliers not being consistent with their bills)

  •  Utility bills in Romania are sent by post > as a result users lose their bills quite often and risk late payment taxes 

  • Users with many properties spend many days a month to track if the rentees pay their bills & rent regularly   

  • Users went to the utility bill supplier's HQ to pay bills (unbelievably), so they had to travel only to pay bills 

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Lessons from users

After understanding users, I saw various opportunities to capitalise on, by creating a product that:

  • Brought utility bills to a mobile device monthly in a digital format

  • Was predictable and replicated all the information from suppliers' websites  

  • Users could pay all their: water, electricity, gas, internet bills in one place with 1 tap  

  • To avoid late payments: regular notifications to remind of payment

  • A multiple-location system that allows users to manage all their locations: be it rented, mum's apartment - and see the status of utility bills for each 

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User Journey mapping

There have been/are various flows to create for the app: 

  • Supplier account synchronisation

  • Utility bill payment 

  • Car insurance purchase 

  • Vignette purchase 

  • Voucher purchase 

  • Property owner management system

In my design process I have taken the following steps: 

  • Mapped the key user stages 

  • Created a wireframe

  • Created a prototype based on initial user needs 

  • Tested the prototype with stakeholders, existing users, users who have never seen the app before & users with different technical knowledge

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Continuous improvements

Apps are living organisms which need continuous improvement based on paying close attention to what users do. 

 

After launching functionalities, I have paid close attention to how users interact with our app on all services. 

I have done so, by:

  • Using Smartlook daily - a user behaviour recording tool 

  • Reading the app's live chat daily

  • Carrying out continuous user testing sessions. 

This has allowed me to suggest improvements, see where users get lost & suggest new functionalities based on what users were lacking

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Lessons Learnt & Reflections

In my journey with un-doi I have empathised with user behaviours in ways I never thought existed. 

I learnt so much about my own culture, an emerging market like Romania, that I thought I knew quite well. 

I've learnt that: 

  • True innovation isn't changing one behaviour to another one fully. True innovation is a complement to an existing behaviour that makes the user's life easier. Behaviour which will eventually change with time, step by step

  • True empathy relies in understanding where users come from, how they acted initially, what they understand & how they see life. Empathy in design is catering to an existing behaviour, improving their experience by them barely noticing.

 

Fun facts about I learnt about users in Romania: 

  • People have a huge lack of trust towards any company - as a result of communism

  • People are afraid to pay a huge sum for a service, they'd rather break it down in small payments 

  • There's a huge market for TV top-up

  • People in villages go to their local supermarket to pay their bills 

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