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Optum – Fintech Solutions in Healthcare

Project Info

Duration: Jul 2022 – Present

Company: Optum, Inc. / UnitedHealth Group

Team: Optum Financial UXD

Role: Lead UX / UI Designer & researcher

Tools: Figma/Figjam, Procreate, Otter, UserTesting, Dovetail, Jira & AHA

Note: Due to the proprietary nature of the products developed in my time at Optum, Inc., I will not provide a detailed case study. The designs shown are either already currently public-facing, already in production, or have been edited to remove sensitive or specific details. Please contact me with any questions or concerns.

Optum, Inc. is a leading health solution and care delivery organization. As a subsidiary of Fortune 5 UnitedHealth Group, the work is complex but the mission always remains clear: create a healthier world, with patients and providers at its center. As part of the Optum Financial UX Design team, I am tasked with developing, structuring, designing and researching for various solutions at the intersection of healthcare & fintech.

Understanding the Problem or Feature

Before any pixels make their way into Figma, I strive to understand the problem or feature(s) the business has prioritized for UX. I read through the acceptance criteria, and ask questions based on current state, or using any research findings provided.

I collaborate closely with Stakeholders, Product and Development teams to understand our hopes, dreams, tech limitations & legal obligations. We discuss the roadmap, and where it might fit in the overall sprint timeline. In my tenure, some projects I’ve worked have taken many months, or some have taken less than a week. 

Research & Actionable Insights

If research findings or personas are not available for our specific users, depending on the feature or timeline, I will either source a UX researcher within the company to help… or I will take initiative to write a high-level research plan, interview and/or setup usability testing to see what insightful nuggets of information I can find.

I often use Dovetail to help synthesize both qualitative and quantitative data to present to stakeholders which helps inform the direction UX should go in.

Write User Stories & Create Task Flows

Writing user stories and creating task flows is the core to my UX design process. Without these mini “road maps”… I am driving in the dark. They help discover edge case scenarios, areas we need error notifications & signifiers, and help eliminate “trap loops”. These flows can prove or invalidate how the user moves through the product in the most intuitive way.

I love to keep a project-specific Figjam file dedicated to being a “task flow playground”. It is interesting to see over the lifespan of UX involvement how the design of each flow is different, yet similar.

Sketching & Lo-Fidelity Wire-framing

Once research, user stories and task flows are documented – I use Procreate on the iPad to sketch and iterate. Sketching allows for rapid iteration without investing too much time, and they often serve as a visual aid to get early feedback from stakeholders.

Hi-Fidelity Design & Prototyping

There is a well established DPL (design pattern library) of components and elements used by the Development teams company-wide which often helps once arriving to the phase of creating hi-fidelity screens and prototypes. I use prototypes as early as possible, and maintain a project-specific prototype “links page” which all stakeholders can bookmark to keep up with the latest iterations and our designed future state.

Final Deliverables and Lessons Learned

By working closely with stakeholders, fielding questions from Development and QA, and participating in weekly UX design team critique sessions, I am able to minimize post-launch revisions and maximize results. I’ve learned a lot about communicating UX design intentions, presenting clearly, and ensuring everyone knows they have a safe space to discuss thoughts, ideas and feedback with me. I prioritize cultivating a great relationship with the Development team and often brainstorm with them on how to make everyone’s tasks easier.

I’ve grown so much as a lead designer on the Optum Financial UXD team, and am looking forward to creating many more delightful experiences for our users. ❤️

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