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Future Forward User Design

Improving product design with a chatbot solution





Worked with multidisciplinary team on a fast-paced project to develop and pitch a new concept, the re-vamp of a mortgage application process. Defined narratives around people serviced by the mortgage application to illustrate pain points and aligned design with concrete research on trends in consumer behaviour and tech advances. Final pitch integrating brand narrative to demonstrate the solution’s efficacy and business fit. Final design integrated a dynamic AI Chabot, taking the process beyond a form into a future-forward design.



Pitch presentation, high fidelity wireframes


Przemek Jalowski, Montserrat Slim, Jenny Whyte 


How do we make our online mortgage application user-friendly?

Brief: "We set out to re-imagine the current Mortgage offering by reaching out directly to Canadians who are in the market for their first, or subsequent Mortgages today. The research aimed to deeply understand who these people are, what their life is like, and what keeps them up at night. We wanted to know what they are seeing in the market today across lending options, what their Mortgage experience has been so far, and how they would have liked it to be if they could change it." 


Ultimately, the process of context inquiry led to some meaningful insights. Only 33% of people end up completing the current online mortgage application process, citing the form as cumbersome, uninspiring and tedious. It was not only about inspiring consumers, but improving process. 


The reframed research question became: 


How do we make our online mortgage application user-friendly and encourage, support and reinforce the savviness of customers who make smart decisions with their money?











The research for this project uncovered consumer pain points, trends in consumer behaviour and envisioned a solution that would satisfy market conditions 5 years out. 


1. Empathy Mapping

What are the customers thinking, seeing, feeling, saying, hearing, doing? This data provided valuable insights as to what the market segments want, need and aren't getting currently. Painpoints in application process were used to guide design. 

2. Industry Guideline Research

The regulations guiding mortgage acquisitions needed to be carefully understood and considered in order to ensure the user flows reflected the standards and regulations.  

3. Consumer Behaviour and Market Trends

The projected design timeline for implementation was at least 3 years out. The market trends currently defining and evolving customer interaction with online products were considered in order to pitch a concept that aligned with the trends and signals we are currently seeing. 

4. Branding Fit

Key brand concepts were used to define concept design. The concept and design needed to be, fresh, simple, non-judgemental and encourage ways to make the consumer better. 

5. Prototyping & Wireframing

Once consumer needs were considered and the design goals were defined, a process of prototyping using wireframes continued to refine the concept for the final pitch.






The design outcomes aligned to band features, inclusive design principles and were forged with deep empathy of customer. 

Be Fresh.  

Chatbots are fresh, interactive and future forward.​


The chatbot serves to both educate the client with 'more information' feature and brings a fun 'human-touch' to a rather tedious process. 


Our chatbot solution employs both a utilitarian and an informational chatbot style. It brings the client closer to understanding the process giving options for education, and using conversation as a framework for collecting the data it needs.  This core feature brings a human touch to digital information gathering and makes this form easy to use and innovative.


Make it Simple.  

The process is accurate, informative and only shows information relevant to user needs. 

The design was sleek and offer access to additional tools and information through chatbot interaction, but was visually straightforward. 


Our process design is both proactive and informative, giving access to tools the user didn’t even know they needed. We created a flow that gives the users the right access to information at the right time, making the process relevant and encouraging the user to explore the details of their options in order to make decisions that work best for them.


No Judgement.  

The process and features were designed with inclusivity in mind.  

The effort it takes to complete a form such as this varies depending on who you are and what your life is like. 


We defined this process up to fit the lives of real users. Sometimes we start things, and we don’t have time to finish. Sometimes we don’t know the answer to questions that seem simple. Sometimes we need someone to make our lists for us. Sometimes we just need some human help. Our bot doesn’t judge, but rather provides options for the user to fill out the form on their own terms, but help is always there to lead the way if needed.


Make me Better. 

Our process was developed with empathy for the user and founded in the insight, we all want to do better but could use a little help along the way. 

Our process is designed to make the user smarter. By using a chatbot we are taking advantage of an AI to create a process that relieves the burden from the applicant. We offer tools which connect users to information that can help make them savvy in their choices and ultimately encourage habits and behaviours which will grow their bank account.


Pitch presentation occurred in front of 40 c-suite executives and chosen as the best example of a future-forward user design.  


Want to discuss how user research can help your product launch? 

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