Why I rebuilt Divvy from the ground up months in

by Divvy


Obsession: an idea or thought that continually preoccupies or intrudes on a person’s mind.

Google search for the word obsession

No matter how far I step back or try to stop, Divvy is an idea.. that continually preoccupies my mind. In other words, I physically cannot stop myself from changing, tweaking and improving its design. Sure I work on all the other stuff too (except development), but for some reason I am never satisfied with how it looks or how it works. But now I think I’ve cracked it. 

I took a trip into Intercom’s Dublin office today to have a chat with Brian Donoghue one of their project managers about UX. After chatting with Brian about Intercom’s workflow and the Jobs To Be Done framework, I left feeling kind of bad about the lack of thought process that went into building the Divvy UI.

To top it all off, I was on a call with Jaron Ray Hinds and his developer Rich from GroLab.LA, and as I was going through the prototype with them I found myself trying to explain what everything does and then making excuses for some clearly bad UX components that I never noticed. 

Clearly a UX overhaul needed to be put in place, here's a comparison of the evolution of the list page:

Here's my evening from whiteboard to design...


20:05 Rubbing out contents of whiteboard

20:06 Sketching out how content would be laid out in blocks in the new design concept rather than verticle cards. 

20:30 Taking to Sketch and mocking up the screens I had so far. 

21:00 Procrastinating and watching Brittany Metz and Derek Fidler’s Blab on the design of Blab, and designing various joke icons like the one below. 

Owlface, the new protagonist of your emoji nightmares

22:00 Sketched some more, eat some food, drank some coffee and got back to it. 

23:00 Blab time, I wanted to get peoples opinion on what good design is for them, luckily Blab being the awesome community it is, one of their product team guys jumped in, Derek Fidler. I showed him my low fidelity mockups, we talked and he gave me some seriously actionable insight. One of the best things he pointed out to me was, that the average user is going to get turned off by the power user settings when inputting an item, so turn them off so people don’t feel obligated to fill them in and get turned off. 

03:22 I am finishing this blog post after burning through a ton of podcasts, redesigning every little detail of the app and getting 4 screens and prototyped.  

Here's a clickable prototype of the new design

Let me know what you think of the interface, shoot me a DM @david_diam :)