& Project Manager
My role at Shane Co. was very versatile and broad. I owned my product and created my own niche area within the department. Not only did I design, prototype, and create deliverables, I also worked with several departments and outside companies.
For Shane Co.'s Marketing department, I created high fidelity prototypes and designs. I would start with sketches and then move to Photoshop. Once satisfied with a design, I would display it on internal screens for my creative team as well as directors for input and critique. This process would be repeated until final approval, at which point, designs were launched to our stores nationwide.
The software I used to implement these designs and launch them to our stores was created by Four Winds Interactive. I worked closely with their designers, developers, and sales team. When I needed to learn something new, had a problem I couldn’t figure out in the software, or needed more products, I had a responsive and friendly team to work with. We had a great time collaborating on new ideas, products, and ways of implementing them. The interactive kiosk presented new challenges and fun problems for us to solve. For example, how should social media display, and should someone’s personal login be available on a public display? What kind of security problems does this create for Shane Co.? Is it worth it? We also worked on coding the software properly and testing the product.
I worked with BOYD, Netsic, and Shane Co.’s IT department once the product was tested and approved. BOYD built the kiosk frame. Shane Co.’s IT department were the owners of the security when it came to computers and technology being installed in the stores. I myself had to make sure I was complying with all of the rules and regulations created to protect our company and our customers. Luckily, I had a great teammate to work with who knew the ins and outs of the server, security systems, and helped me to test and install new displays. Netsic was there to do the heavy lifting. I worked with Netsic’s team to insure that the wiring was correctly done, the wall mounts were safe and secure, and that once everything was plugged in that no one left until the new display worked.
These are all small insights into the daily routines and responsibilities I held at Shane Co. It was a job that required daily problem solving and deductive reasoning. Each time a TV went black I was expected to work through the proper channels to figure out why. The reason was not always the same. Sometimes it was because the server was down and the last deploy had no content to grab, so I could reset the content myself by logging in remotely to the NUC (small computer). Sometimes it was because the NUC was defective and needed to be replaced, so I would have to work with IT to get a new one that was properly configured with a name and shipped out asap. Sometimes we just needed to restart the NUC, which could be done remotely if the computer was up. Otherwise, I had to call the store and describe how to do it manually. Each day brought something new and unexpected.
The Interactive Kiosk was created to solve a major problem that Shane Co. was having especially with the advancement of technology. They needed to replace old outdated Shaneco.com stations that looked junky in the stores. They also needed to find a way to help men search for an engagement ring. The problem was that men were coming in and telling sales associates about a ring she wanted on social media. Then he would proceed to search on his phone for the image. This was distracting for the customer and the sales associate. They needed a solution that would enhance the interaction between the two while still being helpful.
Our idea was to present them with a kiosk so that they could browse and compare social media along with Shane Co.’s online catalog. So that they could not only see all social posts but they could also see the company’s history and values. They would be presented with not only a way to find what she really wants but also a reason to buy from Shane Co.
After carefully observing customers in the stores and watching their interactions with sales associates, I began to document and sketch ideas that would lead to a final product. We went through several iterations and ideas. Initial sitemaps and wireframes were changed over time to accommodate new, better concepts. The kiosk was originally going to be a 55" horizontal touchscreen. I went to look at examples of touch screens this size and realized this would be way too big and intrusive to the flow of the showrooms. I had to go back and redesign the entire screen. We went from a horizontal to a vertical screen after discovering that we needed to be ADA compliant. Most of the buttons to navigate are along the bottom of the screen. The top third of the screen is left as a slide show because the reach was too high for someone in a wheelchair. It was disappointing to discover that the screen real-estate was so limited for displays. Unlike an iPad, a display cannot be put into someone’s hands.
After deciding the size and orientation of the display, a wireframe was drafted for approval and ideation with the creative team. The team had a hard time with rough wireframes so I created high-fidelity prototypes to help guide them towards a more productive solution. We collaborated and reduced content. We redesigned and went through many more ideas over many weeks before arriving at a final design.
At this point, it was time to send the prototypes and style guides along to Four Winds. Once the developers got to work there were other problems that arose that needed to be worked out. This required some knowledge of coding and limitations of the software. I was the liaison between my more graphic based directors and the developers. We worked through login issues and ultimately decided having customer logins weren’t worth the security risk on such a large public facing screen. The screens would be reduced to our own social accounts and sites. We were ready to develop a final product.
After observing the initial installation, I was surprised to find that customers were using the kiosk for many reasons. They used it when staff were busy as well as out of pure curiosity. Customers were browsing our product and learning about our company instead of getting on their phone and getting distracted through social media and possibly even browsing competitors sites.
The Interactive Kiosk is connected to an Adobe Date Feed that allows it to automatically pull images and data from Adobe Scene 7. This produces the catalog page that you see in the rotation. I was even able to use nice full resolution images without bogging down the bandwidth in the stores by pulling key data elements like small images and large images for the full pages.
You can also see Shane Co.’s social pages such as Instagram, Pinterest, and the blog. This was inspired by the concept that when a man comes in to buy a ring he is at a complete lost as to where to start. They usually pull up her social page for inspiration. Unfortunately, logging into private social accounts would be a major security risk but I was able to provide a data feed of the company’s social pages so that they would be available for reference and inspiration.
Also included in the kiosk, are company history, the 4c’s, the company’s PR, and date night inspiration. This was to allow the customer to gain some knowledge and insight into the culture and care the company provides for the customer and their employees.
My vendors helped me from start to finish. Without them there would be no kiosk. BOYD signage systems helped build the frame for the kiosk. Four Winds Interactive developed the kiosk. Netsic helped with the installation. I oversaw every step and appreciated the expertise of these companies.