Set big goals. Pursue and achieve them with sustainable daily habits.
An all-in-one habit tracker, Nukshuk /nook’ shook/ helps you cultivate daily habits leading to long-term success.
The robust yet easy-to-use app enables you to set goals, create and track daily habits, connect with friends and coaches, and share habits and progress for encouragement and accountability.
Digital Product Designer
August 2019 – July 2021
Co-Founders: Ann Konecny & Jordan Tung
iOS dev: Bret Pudenz
Web dev: Blake Tiemann
Android dev: outsourced
As the sole product designer, I worked alongside product management and dev teams to solve key usability issues based on feedback from users and standard practices.
I also helped research user behaviors and interaction patterns, develop new features, improve the app’s visual interface and implement helpful feedback loops.
We also began developing a SaaS platform, enabling larger scale accountability through professional coaching relationships and related contexts. While I cannot display this work in my public portfolio, please contact me directly if you would like more information.
Additional responsibilities included: design and development of our marketing website, illustration, how-to video production, branding collateral and other assets as needed.
Co-founder Ann had the vision for Nukshuk as she looked to automate the habit-tracking she was doing with spreadsheets. Drawing on scientific approaches to long-term self-improvement and books like Atomic Habits by James Clear and The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg, Ann aimed to empower others to life changing success through the power of simple daily habits.
When I came onto the project, the app was in beta, so I worked with project manager, Jordan, to get feedback from beta testers. We used this data as well as feedback the team had received from Apple’s WWDC Conference to make key usability updates to the app.
In addition, we developed user surveys, reaching out to both consistent users and people who had dropped off in order to analyze what we were doing well and what we could do to improve engagement and retention.
Outlining journey maps was crucial to constructing a vision for how people would interact with the application. I broke large interactions down into smaller processes that I mapped out. These studies helped inform navigation, hierarchy, wireframes and key interaction elements.
Transferring these ideas and interactive flows to screens began with rough hand-drawn wireframes, outlining screen layouts. This enabled quick iterations and internal feedback before diving in to high fidelity iterations.
Analysis of primary bottom navigation based on primary and secondary application features
I then created high fidelity screens, making use of our brand and product design systems. A highly iterative process, screen designs underwent multiple revisions, considering user experience, development time and budget and technical constraints. If additional restrictions arose after dev handoff, I made additional modifications to accommodate.
Factoring in the iterative nature of the design process was key to designing and rolling out updates. The experience we may have believed optimal for users may not have fit within budget, development or timeline criteria. As a result, compromises were made and changes could be rolled out slowly over time.
Numerous iterations on the Weekly Progress screen
I redesigned the messaging interface for better usability and functionality
New onboarding exploration involves goal setting, helping users select and structure their daily habits
I designed badges for gamification
Navigation exploration where Daily Check-in, Progress and Analytics are accessible from the home screen
Figma’s prototyping features allowed me to create interactive click-throughs that allowed both our team and testers to sample how update and new features would function. This enabled us to quickly detect basic usability problems and points of confusion before passing designs to dev.
Prototype flow for updated onboarding
Because we were working in an agile capacity, rolling out small updates periodically allowed us to check in frequently with users to validate changes and new features. With each update and launch, we would get feedback from beta testers and app users. Alongside business goals, budget and strategy, this feedback helped inform further features and updates.
I built a design system using Figma libraries to use across the Nukshuk app and SaaS products. This included everything from text styles and colors to icons, buttons, inputs, headers, navigation items, layouts and more.
The design system ensured platform, interaction and brand consistency and significantly reduced development time.
Unfortunately, Nukshuk shut down in the summer of 2021. While the app is still maintained in the App Store and many users are profiting from the habit tracking and accountability features, we were unable to enter into the market in a competitive capacity. While we recognize many factors where we could have done better, hindsight is always 20/20.
We recognized that the premise of our app was to inspire behavior change. This was a major barrier to adoption and retention; people are resistant to change. Prior to shutting down development, we did a lot of research on user behaviors. We identified four paths we could take to improve adoption and retention: gamification, smart notifications, in-app messaging and accountability.
The app received glowing reviews in the App and Google Play Stores, including feedback that the app was helping people to affect healthy and positive changes in their lives!
I am extremely proud of my contributions that can be seen in the live app as well as extensive updates and features that did not go live. If you’d like a deeper look into this work that was not implemented, please contact me directly: firstname.lastname@example.org.