My Time at Jawbone
I’m a product designer working on Jawbone’s Product Experience design team for the UP system. We use wearable trackers, mobile apps, and the web surfaces to help our users set health goals, change their behavior, and ultimately live healthier.
Most of the work I've done at Jawbone is confidential, so I can't share it publicly online. If you'd like to see more of my work or learn more about what I do, please contact me.
The design team
The size and culture of the design team have changed many times since I joined in 2015. Generally, design is structured into three groups: Brand/marketing, Product Experience, and Industrial design through Fuseproject. The Product Experience team is responsible for the user experience of hardware as well as the end to end design of all software features. The size and shape of the team have varied greatly, ranging from over 15 to just 5 at its smallest.
During my time at Jawbone I have worked with three cross-functional teams, learned from talented mentors, and experienced various leadership styles. Because Jawbone’s products involve both hardware and software, I’ve been fortunate enough to work on aspects of product design for both wearables and digital surfaces. My responsibilities have included research, system design, user experience, and visual design for multiple platforms. Additionally, I have contributed heavily to a design component system for the UP app.
This fast-paced culture and my shifting responsibilities have allowed me to quickly take on responsibility and ownership of the features I’ve worked on.
The New Products Team
My first position at Jawbone focused on projects directly related to our Research and Development efforts. I worked under the Creative Director of New Products and along with our signal algorithms and hardware engineering teams to design wireframes, user experience frameworks, and vision decks for potential new UP products/features.
I conducted secondary research on health and wellness along with competitive analyses of other products. Even more insights were gathered through the user interviews, diary, and usability studies I helped conduct with externally recruited users.
Lastly, I was involved in proposing strategy, features, and physical requirements for new hardware products that were in conceptual development at the time.
New responsibility leads to personal growth
The Signals Tribe
In the Fall of 2015, the company was restructured to combine the engineering and design organizations under one unified product delivery group. We began working in a tribe model, which gave us closer access to our cross-functional counterparts.
I was part of the Signals Tribe, where I continued pushing forward projects started on my previous team. For the first two months, I worked with a Senior Visual Designer on several new feature proposals that would have better contextualized data within UP. After the designer left Jawbone, I became design lead responsible for all the features developed within the tribe.
I mainly worked on a total redesign of the activity logging portion of our app, which includes workouts and sleep. I was responsible for defining the user experience for hardware & software, ultimately creating new functionality that improved usability and product experience objectives. Later in the design process I worked closely with my Creative Director to develop a new visual design language that would begin to roll out with this feature. I then independently delivered final assets and collaborated with engineers to implement the design.
New opportunities help challenge my status quo
The Behavior Change Tribe
In August 2016, team needs shifted and I was given the opportunity to join another tribe as the design lead. This provided a fresh opportunity to develop new skills in behavioral psychology, feature testing, and data analysis.
The Behavior Change Tribe’s focus is to use experimentation to statistically prove that interventions in our system can help people move more, sleep better, or lose weight. To that end, everything developed within this tribe is A/B tested with users. My previous role was all about unification and systemization of features, so I was excited to exercise a new set of skills, work in shorter timelines, and test the effectiveness of many divergent ideas.
My work generally focuses on improving the value of Smart Coach, UP’s artificial intelligence-based coaching system. This involves working closely with engineers and data scientists to understand how users use UP to meet their goals. We create hypotheses and define interventions based on behavioral psychology. Then, I collaborate with a content strategist to develop features and content using the Smart Coach system. A few of my projects have involved creating multi-day challenges to motivate people to log food, encouraging users to engage in step battles with the system, and contributing to a longer-term effort to create a feature set that could be proven to help users lose weight over time.