Bloomberg file management Internal tool redesign

Goal: Research and redesign an internal file management tool

Constraints: 3 month project

Role: UX Researcher and Designer

Tools: Google Collaboration Suite, Sketch

UX Deliverables: Research Findings Presentation, Wireframes

Timeline: 3 months

 

Background

As a UX Research and Design Intern on the Financial Product UX team at Bloomberg, I was tasked with rethinking and redesigning the file management experience within the Bloomberg Terminal to ultimately improve access to the files users need, streamline their file management workflows, and organize their files more intuitively.

 

problem statement

How might we improve the file management experience for our internal users?

The current file management tool had not been touched in a couple years, and the team I joined challenged me to reimagine what that new experience could be.

 

Research overview

Research Goal: Design a solution that addresses the needs and pain points of file users

Sub-goals:

  1. identify commonly used file types and tools
  2. Identify common file management actions (create, copy, paste, duplicate, etc.)
  3. Understand file management in the Bloomberg software vs. non-Bloomberg software
  4. Analyze general file organizational strategies

To accomplish my research goals within the scope of three months, I chose to perform the following research activities:

  • User Interviews - Interviewed 11 internal users regarding their file management behaviors and tool usage
  • Competitive Analysis - Analyzed 14 direct and indirect file management competitors to the Bloomberg internal file management tool
  • Internal Help Desk Ticket Analysis - Identified six tickets that highlighted potential features and problem spaces to explore
Competitive Analysis comparing and contrasting features for direct and indirect file management competitors

Competitive Analysis comparing and contrasting features for direct and indirect file management competitors

 

RESEARCH FINDINGS

Through the research I uncovered:

Four main file user types and their corresponding file management workflows:

Four general file management insights: 

  1. Need for context, not just a place to store files

  2. Three forms of file movement -- within my machine, across devices, and to other people

  3. Shared folders act as a collaborative space

  4. Need to support "filers" and "pilers"

 

brainstorming

Next I took all of the research findings and started to develop concepts around what the new file management experience could be.

First, I wrote high level user stories to identify what the user could do with the new file management tool.

Next I generated a ton of sketches that defined various concepts based off of the user stories.

 

Concept Testing

Once we explored a wide variety of directions, we synthesized our sketches into seven core concepts. We tested these seven concepts with 12 different internal Bloomberg users through open-ended interviewing and storyboards.  Six of the seven storyboard concepts resonated most with the users and those six were implemented in the final design.

Storyboards we tested with users during concept testing

Storyboards we tested with users during concept testing

 

final design

The final design is an integrated file management tool. It connects the user to their local file storage on the local desktop, as well as groups they are apart of in the Bloomberg Terminal. It also includes streamlined workflows and a cleaner, more intuitive interface.

Results

I presented my final design to product managers, engineers, and senior stakeholders, and the feedback I received was positive. It started a conversation around the future of file management, and inspired the product owners to consider investing more time into this file management tool. The concept I came up with will be the foundation for the future file management internal tool.