Following my tenure in Best Buy’s Digital Experience team as lead designer for Omnichannel, I put in a few years leading the UX for the enterprise tools division. The work was not sexy from a graphic perspective but tremendously fulfilling to the interaction designer I’ve always been :). In this particular case, I was asked to help evolve one of their legacy product management tools which had started out, as these things often do, as a well-intentioned enhancement to the previous excel-sheet system product managers had been using, but which naturally devolved in time to a bloated, cumbersome program infested with featuritis, which solved few of the users’ pain-points and made their lives harder rather than easier.
The single, most valuable advantage of building internal enterprise tools, is that you have your end-users right there, in-house. The disadvantage? That those same users are often the same people you must rely on as subject matter experts. So, for that very reason, they can warp your validation process. It took some time, for this reason, to identify subjects with whom to white board ideas versus those better suited for testing. As an example, a number of CMs working remotely proved very useful answering surveys to get us started. Once assumptions were outlined and validated, some wireframe work helped identify the scope of the experience, which was further broken down into technical user stories and weaved into the every day agile cadence for final build.
The work was extremely successful and proved a game-changer in what had been, up until then, and as I said before, excel sheets on digital steroids. Not only were we able to improve massively on the previous experience but a couple of the teams learned how to tie higher level conceptual design work into hands-on, tactical implementation, leveraging user stories not just as feature logs but as effective ways to define experience outcomes beyond the cold system requirements that, more often than not, end up clashing with en-user needs if proper context has not been accounted for.
Product Content Management System
(single UX resource within agile team)
building on precedence
Before arriving to the glossy, final redesigned product, much down-and-dirty iterating with quick wireframes was done to improve the previous version, sprint-after-sprint. We iterated always on the real product, testing and validating as we moved along. By the time we received marching orders to redesign, the old version was already half-way there.
People at Best Buy said
Alfonso has been a joy to work with. His intense passion for UX has helped to drive our group forward. The vast experience that he’s brought to our team has been invaluable in helping us elevate our work to new levels. He’s also shown a great blend of creativity and work ethic in driving our clearance digital experiences and several internal systems forward. On top of that, he’s driven some quick turn concept work that’s helped us better communicate with the business. His talent and experience have made him an invaluable member of our UX team.Greg Bro Managed me at Best Buy & worked with me at Slalom
Alfonso is an inspirational UX/Ix Designer with strong work ethic. I have learned a lot about LeanUX, design, usability, and the creative process from working with him. He pulls from a mix of instinct, user intuition, and keen eye for what works. I’m sure we will see many great things come from Alfonso in the future, he is a rock star!Evelyn Quinn Product Leader
Alfonso is the real deal: a UX designer who actually listens to users and crafts experiences that cater to their needs, an Agile collaborator who moves fast and enhances the work of everyone on his team, and a hilarious motherf***er who’s a joy to work with. I’ve personally partnered with him on projects ranging from micro-interactions to enterprise-scale content management systems, and I can tell you: if you want a creator who can think big without missing the details, you’re going to want Alfonso on your team.Nathan McIntyre UX Architect, Best Buy