Sinaps is a mobile skill sharing app that connects tech professionals who have complimentary skill sets.
The world of technological skills is ever-evolving, and learning a new skillset outside of one’s particular strengths can be time consuming, expensive, and inefficient depending on individual needs and goals. University degrees, bootcamps and online courses may be out of the question for working professionals, especially those who need to hone in on a particular skill rather than committing to months or years of time and money.
Complimentary skill sets abound in the technology’s booming workforce, but without a matchmaker, people will default to popular methods, taking unnecessary time out of their lives to learn more than they need. How can we streamline the matchmaking process to inspire the exchange of useful skills based on complimentary goals and know-how?
Streamline the exchange of digital skills in a rapidly changing market
Rather than building a well-defined structure for the app based on its presumed role, I started by approaching the problem space in a holistic and open-minded way. Market and user research occupied key roles in the early ideation and user testing.
To carve out the app’s niche, I had to examine existing skill-sharing apps in relation to contemporary learning methodologies such as bootcamps and online courses, and figure out how professionals with diverse needs and skill sets might meet up and teach each other as fruitfully and enjoyably as possible.
I used a lean design process, including sketching, prototyping and user feedback at every step. This allowed for an iterative design that was responsive at all levels of development.
Irrelevant content and disorganized communication are the biggest hurdles
By looking through positive and negative reviews of three major skill sharing avenues - Craigslist, Tibba and Simbi - as well as interviewing five full-time tech professionals, I was able to identify major paint points and consolidate them into two primary personas: