Way back in May I blogged about working for free, in return for charitable donations to charities of my choice.

Talentpool Recruitment in Sydney responded with a brief of work to redesign their website. Since then, we have had a kick-off meeting to determine the projects goals. But to get things started I fleshed out a research plan to get the project underway.

Identifying the 3 sectors

We’ve identified the 3 sectors that the project will need to focus on:

  • Talent (Designers, Developers)
  • Hiring Businesses (Managers, Directors)
  • Other Recruiters (Other agents)

We started with a basic problem statement “How can recruiters better serve these 3 sectors”.

A refreshing project

This is such an unusual project for me, as there’s a real sense that we are doing something somewhat different. Usually there’s a client screaming somewhere in the background, that needs to be managed. But because this is a charitable project, and I am super busy with the NSW Department of Justice at the moment, I can really only offer 8-10 hours a month – there’s a really nice understanding and balance with the guys.

Another one of my side-projects, SydneyXD.com is taking shape, and we’re doing some quantitative research soon. Early stage research has highlighted that emerging user experience and service design talent are struggling to get a break and find mentors, and get experience. When I mentioned this to Talentpools’ Johanna Peirce, she straight away introduced me to super cool dude, Brendon Boulous, who is going to shadow me at my interviews, and workshops.

Brendon is new to the industry so I figured it’s a good opportunity for me to get to know Brendon and help him, but it’s also a good opportunity for Talentpool to get involved with helping emerging talent break into the industry.

We have a few interviews locked in over the next week or two, so will update you with our findings in due course.

Here’s some of my favourite design tools that I have been using recently. You may know them already, but wanted to share anyway…

service design smaply

Mind Meister

This is an (oldie but goodie) awesome tool for brainstorming, tracking ideas etc. If you want to sign up, you can use this code (I get a discount on my monthly subscription for each member that signs up #winning!).



Persona, and customer journey mapping tool. From the guys who brought us This is Service Design Thinking book. I’m actually working with the guys with some testing of their latest release, and it is awesome. Well worth the investment if you or your organisation are doing some serious service designing.


Flinto for Mac

I loved this application when it was browser based, but now it’s native and much more advanced. Let the good times roll!


Principle for Mac (by Facebook)

Awesome prototyping tool!



Oh man, this simple little hack makes me (and my OCD!) super happy.

  1. Click the little cog in the upper right of the screen.
  2. Click “settings”
  3. Click the “Labs” tab.
  4. Search for “Right-side chat” by Emily C.
  5. Click the radio button beside “Enable”
  6. Click “Save Changes” at the top or the bottom.