Group 8

Jell is a desktop and mobile standup meeting alterantive for remote teams. The founders of Jell were working at a software company that was struggling with the challenges of a growing team. They started working on Jell as a side-project to help improve communication and align teams.

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Understanding the Product

The usability test was conducted by a team of 4 and we needed to understand who the product was made for and what does it help them accomplish. We set up a Hangouts meeting with Jon Izquierdo, the UX Designer at Jell, to get our questions answered.

  • Jell aims at aligning teams separated by distance and time zone.
  • It wants to aid collaborating with different development cultures. 
  • Tools in Jell help cut the mess of emails and meetings that plague most teams today.
  • Jell wants teams to focus on work that matters most.

Expert Evaluation Insights

The team evaluated the web tool by performing a Cognitive Walkthrough and Heuristic Evaluation individually and then comparing the results to identify the major issues with the tool.

  • The terms 'Status', 'Plans' and 'To-do' did not mean what they usually mean. For us, Plans meant something in the future, To-do meant today's tasks, we were unclear of the relation between Plans and Status.
  • The bifurcation of Individual and Organizational Goals were confusing.
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  • Deadlines were not customizable.
  • System feedback was inconsistent for similar actions, like entering and saving information, in different places.
  • Onboarding for a new user was lacking which makes the tool's labels and functions hard to understand right away.


  • The tool was tested with 10 participants, 6 female and 4 male.

  • Experience working in teams
    - Less (1-3 times): 2
    - Occasionally: 6
    - Regularly: 2

  • Experience with similar applications
    - Have used similar application: 4 (Slack, WebEx, Visual Studio, Asana, Basecamp)
    - Never used any such application : 6

  • Teamwork type experience
    - Same location as team members: 7
    - Working remotely with teams members: 3

  • Participants were mostly graduate students studying Biology, Law, MBA, Bio-Health Informatics, we also had 2 participants who had previous experience working as the software engineer in the team and 1 participant currently working in a product team.


The participants were asked to recall the last/current project they were/are working on with a group and complete the tasks using those details to fill into Jell. The test started from


Task 1 Sign up for an account with Jell and set a goal for your project.
Task 2 Set a deadline for your goal.
Task 3 Write down the tasks you wish to accomplish today.
Task 4 Write down what you wish to accomplish in the near future.

A pilot test was conducted to ensure that the tasks themselves were easy to understand or if they needed to be explained more in detail or need more context.

Data Collected

  • Completion rate of each task
  • Task time for each task
  • Post-test questionnaire
  • Comments and feedbacks from the participants


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  • Majority of the participants were able to complete all the tasks, without any prompting, under 4 mins.

  • Amongst the participants who couldn't complete the tasks, different participants couldn't complete different tasks indicating that background and experience using similar apps did not have much effect.

Task 1
Setting a Goal

Task 2 
Setting a Deadline

“It should be under Goals... Yes! under Goals... No, it is not Goals... Frustrating... I think it is Goals.” - P8

8 out of 10 participants completed the task but they experienced a lot of frustration while doing it because of the lack of guidelines and multiple Goal tabs for individual and organization goals that did not have clear differentiation

"What is Q1, Q2, Q3, Q4? Why can't I just set a date with like a calendar pop-up?" - P5

This was the easiest task since it went along the flow of setting a goal but participants expressed their frustration when they weren't able to customize their metrics for completion or deadline date. 

Task 3
Writing what to accompish today

Task 4
Writing what to accomplish in near future

"Okay, so I think that means my to-do? I'll add this under to-do"

7 out of 10 participants completed this task but most participants first added their tasks to To-do first and then changed it to plans after trying to complete Task 4 and realizing that Plans was the right option.

"Oh wait! It says Post your status, but how is that related to what I'm planning to do? Shouldn't that be what I already did?"

Even with task 4, 7 out of 10 participants completed this task but a different 3 participants didn't complete it. The terminologies used confused participants even though eventually they ended up filling the right information under the right tab.

Post-test Questionnaire Results

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Major Issues

High Priority

1. Confusion with “Plans”, “Goals”, and “To­-do”

Nearly half of the participants selected a wrong function when they were supposed to add a plan or a to­do. The confusion was present not only between “plans” and “to­do” but also between  “plans”  and  “goals”. Since this is part of the main tasks on Jell, it was ranked as a high-priority issue.

Participants Suggested
Alternative  names  for  “Goals”,  “Plans”, and  “To-­do”

  • “Goals”  to  “Objective”  and  “Plans”  to  “Tasks”
  • Combine “Goals” and “Plans” into one feature and distinguish them as “Long-­term”  and  “Short­term”  (2  participants  on  combining  those  features)
  • “Plan”  to  “To-­do”  and  “To-­do”  to  “Schedule”

Displaying  a  brief  description  of  the  terms  beside  their  headings or as  you  hover  over  them.

2. Lack of feedback

While the system was providing feedback after submitting a form or when having a problem, many participants did not notice the feedback or complained that they did not receive any feedback. The success messages disappear quickly after displaying and the participants did not consider some system actions as feedback. On the other hand, one person was very satisfied with feedback from the  system. Lack of feedback even led to loss of data, when participants were adding to either “Plans” or “To-­do”, as the data  does  not  save  automatically  for  those  two  functions and so it was ranked as high priority.

Providing consistent and easy to perceive system feedback, either have submit buttons everywhere or just have users press the enter key and show changes in the UI to indicate that the action has been completed. 

3. Confusion with navigation

Some participants were struggling with finding out where they can find a certain function, and they were clicking every menu available in Jell. One participant also stated that it is hard to know what functions they would be able to perform under each menu and the participant would like to have it laid out as sidebars. "It appeared good, design, layout  is  good  but  functionality  is  confusing.”


  • Providing  breadcrumb  navigation
  • Most users do not have just one team, providing a better visual representation of the teams they belong to would be beneficial, for example, the user being the central node connected to different team nodes  which  have  teammate  nodes  inside  them
  • Providing a more intuitive method for changing between organizations, for example, they could be listed out instead of being hidden under a drop­down menu without any specific labels indicating  that  it  is  a  drop­down  menu  for  organizations.
  • Removing unnecessary tabs that create more chances of the user clicking on them and wandering through the website, like the two goal tabs.

Medium Priority

4. Confusion with team goal and individual goal

Participants entered a team goal when they were supposed to enter an individual goal because they thought it was an individual goal. They also had problem finding out where they can add or view an individual goal.

Integrate all goals under one page, preferably the home page and have clear demarkation for which goal stands for what, with appropriate subheadings, tags or colours.

5. Lack of customizability of deadline or metrics

Some participants did not understand a quarter system. On the other hand, the participants who have worked or are working as developers did not have any problem with setting a deadline by a quarter. For metrics for measuring success of a goal, some participants did not understand how to set such criteria with numbers. They did not  understand  what  the  numbers  represented.

Participants Suggested 
Alternative  way  of  setting  a  deadline  in  “goals”

  • By  a  time
  • By  a  day  (6  participants)
  • By  a  month(3  participants)

Since Jell also wants to cater to non-working professionals doing team work, avoiding industry jargons and using widely accepted practices like setting deadline by the date, month and year would help all users.

Low Priority

6. Missing "Goals" in Home Page

Some participants did not realize they can add goals in the home screen because they did not scroll enough to see the  whole  page.

Keeping all important information above the fold.


User Feedback and Suggestions

What They Liked About Jell

  • Simple  and  straightforward  interface
  • Jell  does  not  contain  unnecessary  information
  • Clear  display  of  where  the  user  currently  is  in  the  website
  • The feature to move tasks based on priority, which cannot be done in other applications that they have used
  • Ease  of  entering  information
    “In another application that I used, it took an hour from my work time to just enter all the information onto the application”

What They Disliked About Jell

  • Difficulty  navigating  the  website.
    “It  seems  easy  to  use,  but  its  logic  is  not  clear.” 
  • Confusion with menu names, like the name of “Move” icon: the participant would have preferred “up” or “down” based on the location of the text box the participant would  like  to  move. In general, menu names required explanation to be understood.
  • Lack  of  control  over  the  contents  being  displayed.
  • The text box on suggested first steps at right side looks like an advertisement.
  • The  suggested  first  step  cannot  be  restored  once  a  user  removes  it by clicking the cross button.
  • Lack  of  features  they  would  like  to  use like  to  chat  with  team  members.
  • A participant stated the participant would like to see “To­-Do” in personal page.
  • Lack  of  guidance  and  feedback
    - The participant could effortlessly add the goal but the participant was confused if it was saved and added a goal once more."
    - The  participant  felt  the  website  did  not  give  enough  instructions
  • UI  design  being too  simple
    - While some participants liked the UI design for its simplicity, some participants  disliked  it  as  being  “plain.”

Suggestions  on  existing  features

  • On  hover,  displaying  information  on  what  those  menus  do.  (2  participants)
  • Setting  a  deadline  for  “Plans”  and  “To-do”  as  well.
  • A  calendar  overview  for  “Goals.”
  • Setting  a  color  for  each  goal.
  • Provide  a  percentage  option  for  success  measure  metric.
  • Show  both  Team  goal  and  individual  goal  on  Home  screen.

Suggestions  on  additional  features  they  would  like  to  use

  • Chat  with  team  members.  (2  participants)
  • File  uploading  and  sharing.  (3  participants)
  • A questionnaire which would take the user through the requirements and plans  for  project.
  • A  map  showing  all  the  projects  the  user  is  connected  to.


We were unable to test team collaboration

Jell is a team reporting tool, so it is essentially an app that relies on different users interacting with it simultaneously. Unfortunately, we could not test this aspect of the application since we did not find a group ready to spare some time for it. We were only able  to  test  users  running  through  the  system  individually.

No current users as participants

We only tested first-­time users so we got the general first ­impression of Jell and how users navigate through it the first­ time they use it. However, we didn’t test what current users are doing with Jell,  and  if  they  have  any  trouble  using  it.

No Project Managers as participants

Project Managers are a significant target audience for Jell and their functionalities are different. Unfortunately, we were only able to recruit participants who have experience working in teams in an organization and graduate/undergraduate  students.


As we communicated the findings to the designer, changes were already being made even as we were conducting usability tests.

  • The new version of Jell includes Slack, Jira, Trello, Github and G Suite integration
  • Several menu tabs were removed and only the important ones were retained making navigation extremely simple
  • Jell lets users set schedules and deadlines for standups
  • They added clear buttons like "Post" to ensure that an action has been completed

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