Grantcycle (formerly Atlas Solutions) founder Ansley Fender wanted to create a product that would streamline the entire grant management process and bring innovation to a space that hardly sees any. The status quo for handling of grant funding on both sides of the ecosystem — funding recipients, as well as grant funders (foundations, governments, etc.) — involves working across multiple channels of communication and managing different types of data-rich documents within disparate software; the process can be both cumbersome and highly disorganized.
Our process was split into two separate engagements with Grantcycle.
Initial product designs for proof of concept to secure greater funding (Achieved).
Further user experience designs to expand the product for the funder side of the grant management ecosystem followed by prototyping, user interfaces and high fidelity designs of the product. We also created a marketing website for the product to sell it online
Low-fi and mid-fi mockups that capture major user flows
Hi-fi mockups for key areas of the product
We aspired to design something robust in terms of functionality, while still injecting UI/UX smarts into a process that can otherwise easily feel complicated and overwhelming to users. Transparency across an organization’s funding allocation was also top of mind for Ansley. For this reason, it was critical to design a platform that would allow for easy collaboration and tracking among different users within an organization.
In addition to the design of the product, Ansley wanted to channel our expertise to design a marketing website that could present content in a dynamic, visually engaging way that would also be informative and ultimately help in converting prospective customers.
We followed a simple 5-Step process to identify and design solutions:
Creating epics & user stories.
Testing & improvement.
Create landing page.
During our first engagement, we worked closely with Ansley to focus on the funding recipient side of the platform she envisioned. We kicked off with a discovery phase to first illuminate the problem. We discussed existing products and functional gaps, pain points. All the while we asked ourselves what a minimum viable product would look like. After we had established the contextual backdrop for this product, we moved into defining the macro view in terms of overall product functionality.
CREATING EPICS & USER STORIES
We began by defining all functional requirements using the model of user stories (framing as much of the product as possible as unique stories about what a user is trying to achieve).
WIREFRAME & DESIGN
We took our findings from the design discovery phase and then iteratively fleshed out designs from low to high fidelity.
TESTING & IMPROVEMENT
Shared with test users, investors and other stakeholders for valuable feedback, we then used this feedback to improve our product design and ensure it was as smooth for the user to interact with as possible.
CREATE LANDING PAGE
We then needed to create a landing page for the product to sell it online as a shop front.
CEO of GrantCycle Ansley Fender says FW helped me put together all the pieces that were scattered throughout my brain. I knew how I wanted the software to function and the aesthetic I was going for, but I didn't know how to actually make that happen.
- Ansley Fender
Wireframes that captured user flows and interaction points
Low, mid and hi-fidelity designs in Sketch & Figma
Design system for the user interface
Website created to market Grantcycle
A fully designed grant management solution that was tailored to users
QUESTIONS TO THE FOUNDER
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