Human-Centered Design Portfolio
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App Design for Working Mom

Imagine you are a full-time working mom of two kids, one is a 2-year-old and the second is 1-week-old. Every morning, you wake up at 6am to prepare food for them and await the baby-sitter before you start your work day. At 5pm, you come back home, start breast feeding and prepare food for the older one.

Besides that, your baby spends his days and nights eating about every two hours, and just when you’re about to drift off to sleep for the third time each night, you’ll hear the cry of your hungry newborn waking you up again. You feel exhausted, hormonal and grumpy, but still you have to think about what food to prepare for them tomorrow, again and again.

Sounds like a nightmare, right?

That's the beginning of this project. It's work for a startup with a focus on working moms.




Kideat is an app assisting working moms to better prepare food for their babies. Based on different growth stages, the app gives working moms systematic and authoritative guidance about food selection. It also allows them to search for recipes, make weekly meal plans, keep records of babies’ appetites and do online shopping more easily.



  • User Research
  • UX Design
  • Visual Design
  • Prototyping
  • Usability Testing




8 Weeks


The Challenge


 According to a report from U.S. Department of Labor, about 54% of women go back to work after having a baby. Among them, 37% of moms work full time and 17% work part time. However, 67% of working moms feel guilty and anxious about their new lives and worry about the daily care for their babies.

So how can we help working moms to strike a better balance between work and family?

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The Solution

To combat the challenge, I present Kideat, an app for working moms to better prepare food for their babies. By conducting user research and interviews, I tried to understand their pain points and challenges. Through Affinity Mapping and Feature Prioritization, I narrowed down to "food choice" as the MVP.

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To understand the problems from a user's perspective, I interviewed 14 working moms, each with unique situations of their own. 10 of them are new moms while 4 of them have two kids.

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In order to understand their challenges and pain points, I asked several questions, like what do you care about most in your daily life? How do you stay organized and on schedule if there is a conflict between kids and work? Have you ever felt lonely or anxious? 



Based on their answers, I conducted Affinity Mapping to divide the problems into groups for further analysis.



1. Working moms care most about the basic needs for their babies, such as breastfeeding, food, sleep, growth.

Most new moms don't know much about taking care of a newborn. They feel they are not well prepared for the changes in their lives and hard to adapt to new challenges. The most urgent thing they need to deal with quickly are the basic needs for their babies, such as how to breastfeeding, which types of food to prepare and how to get more sleep and so on.

2. Current online information and services are fragmented and not systematic.

For working moms, they hope to get authoritative and trustworthy information as quickly as they can instead of having to research throughmultiple websites since their time is very limited. However, most of the online information is fragmented and not systematic. They feel frustrated about the information gathering process, which can be quite time consuming. 

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3. Most of them feel lonely or anxious with very limited support from their husbands and families.

Adjusting new roles as parents adds an unbelievable amount of stress to even the strongest relationship. Many new moms feel that their husband doesn't understand just how challenging it is to care for a baby around the clock. They may resent having to take on most of the household duties and baby-care chores that was originally thought to be evenly split. Men, meanwhile, feel more pressure than ever to succeed at their job and provide financially for their family.

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With these initial research insights, I further defined the design goal:

How might we provide more systematic and authoritative guidance of the basic needs for working moms?



Still, basic needs is too broad to ideate at the beginning stage. I tried to break it down into five groups: Education, Household Service, Food, Health Care and Weekend Activities.


But, which one to choose as the MVP? I conducted Feature Prioritization in order to find out the most urgent need.


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From the above chart, it's easy to find out that most of the answers about food fall into the category "High Impact - Expected", so...

 I decided to focus on food choice and customized recipes as the Minimal Viable Product.





I created three personas based on the affinity diagram and problem statement I aligned above. Each of them has their specific pain points and needs.



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Food choice is very different based on the growth stages of babies.

With the focus on food choice, customized recipes and nutrition balance, I did some researches to get a better understanding of baby food. I found that food choice is very different based on the growth stages of babies, which should be considered carefully. I summarized the information in the following diagram:

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Based on the research, I structured the food information in 5 different age groups: 0 - 3 Months, 4 - 6 Months, 7 - 9 Months, 10 - 12 Months and 12+ Months.






Based on the insights from user research, ideation and low-fidelity prototype, I combined them into wireframe presenting the desired features: Breastfeeding, Recipe and Mealplan.

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  1. The “login in” page should separate the information of mom from baby since it’s not easy for them to notice the baby’s information.
  2. She doesn’t clear about how the “Week by Week Meal plan” works, especially she doesn’t understand what the numbers mean.
  3. The prepared customized meal plan cards seem the most popular feature, but it could be clearer. Working moms can easily swipe left and right to check recipes everyday.
  4. The “navigation” function is a major problem based on the usability test; the “hamburger” button at the bottom is not clear enough to them.
  5. The “Tools” page for “Pumping” is not necessary since tools are packed together by hospital at the very beginning and covered by insurance.
  6. Moms normally won’t buy fruits and vege through online shopping, they still prefer to go to supermarket to buy them. 


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   Put yourself in users' shoes?

1. Before the user interview, I thought most working moms consider raising kids will impact their career development; however, I found that most moms prioritize family over work and they believe that promotion is just a matter of time.
2. Before the user interview, I thought the biggest problem for working moms is how to balance work and family;  however, I found most of them are doing pretty good in this aspect. Their major problem is how to acquire effective information in limited time, especially for new moms who don’t have any previous experience.
3. Before the affinity mapping process, I thought education and healthcare are the two major concerns among working moms; however I found the food choice is their most urgent and difficult challenge to tackle.

What I learned from the design process?

I studied Architecture before and there is a saying“Less is more”. I found it can also be applied to the UX design world. At the beginning, I put many functions in the app including education, healthcare, household service, weekend activity, maternal community and so on. Then I got overwhelmed and felt hard to carry on. I went back to review the user interviews and affinity mapping and found that “food choice” has the most votes, then I decided to take it as my MVP.

What can be done in the future?

I will add more features in the future, such as education information and weekend activities; also, I found building a community for working moms is a good idea. Then they can share their knowledge and experience as well as meeting new friends. 

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