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The first and only coming-soon app that supports self-employed women to succeed

A tool that helps with productivity, making connection, and tracking your health habits

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I worked closely with the founder and a game developer on a 6-month contract. My role involved interviewing self- employed women, extrapolating data into themes, wireframing concepts and  prototyping.  The objective was to build an interactive prototype for usability testing. Since the app is soon to be launched, I will only be showing the process of the community development.

Project Type: Contract

My Role: UX/UI Designer, UX Researcher

Duration: 6 months

Tools Used: Figma

Secondary research

Female entrepreneurs are starting a business at record rates, however, women face many obstacles at work, at home and in private. 


The gender pay gap increases in self-employment. For every dollar a man makes, a self-employed woman makes just over half - for the same work.  

Statistics 📊

Self-employed women have 3x greater risk of being affected by poor mental health 

Obstacles 💰

Entrepreneurial women experience four big obstacles to growing their business which are feelings of being overwhelmed, isolated, gender obstacles, and funding

Our goal is to build an app that helps women improve their productivity, help with stress resilience, and improve women's mental and emotional health.


I used the method, empathy mapping to help me guide questions in figuring out what their pains and gains are.

Pains 😖

- Women used Facebook to connect but overwhelmed by numerous groups

- Feelings of isolation in rural areas especially when there are lack of access for real-time connections

- Online meetings weren't the same in person

Gains  😊

- Seeking genuine & authentic connections

- Online platform catered to connecting with other self-employed women 


After hearing women speak about their successes and failures, the one thing that stood out the most was that the women needed to connect with someone who was on the same path in their entrepreneurial journey.

user flow

A user flow was created to help the team visualize the proposed sequence of steps the user would encounter when interacting with the application

1. User taps Accountability Buddy

2. User taps on chat icon

3. User sends a message to an Accountability Buddy

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Mid-fi Wireframes
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As a team, we decided to include these four features to start. We noticed that women connect in different ways, whether it is communicating with groups or 1:1 interactions with someone.


Next was to build out the wireframes for the features, I started with events and took inspiration from IRL app because of their clean and simple navigation.


The design of Groups was inspired by Facebook because of it's familiarity 


My intentions behind the Counseling section was to provide an easy way to search for specific therapist or health professional.

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Discover Wireframe.png
Counseling Wireframe.png
Accountability Buddy Wireframe1.png
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Accountability Buddy

This section was inspired by Tinder because of it's intuitive design of the swiping feature. I added another screen for basic information on the profile.

Usability Testing

While interviewing these women, I found that many of them were looking for an accountable friend, particularly one that they can relate to and that is on the same entrepreneurial journey as them.  After listening to suggestions, we made improvements to how it would be more beneficial and easier to connect with other self-employed women.


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In a group of 22 women in our usability testing round two, 16 self-employed women chose to check out accountability buddy first because it's something that is not offered on other platforms. They also mentioned that they would like to have an accountability partner. We decided to spend more time in this feature.

accountability Buddy

When asked which of the 4 features they would be most interested in checking out, they were most curious about checking out Accountability Buddy. Why? Most women felt that they did not know anyone else who were going through the same struggles. Especially for those who lived in rural areas. Below are the indications that the women suggested on changing.

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Profile picture is too large, need to have more capturing information 

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Include what the user is looking for in accountability buddy

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two screens into one

After iterations and user testing, we found that there was an easier way to display all the information on one screen. We added "Style" and "Accountability Level" headings to give the user a sense of what their potential match was looking for in an accountability buddy.


For the community screen, we used stock images but we decided to have graphics instead. The reasoning behind this was that graphics have more of a powerful image than the stock images. We wanted the images to be relatable but abstract in regards to something that is not too literal.

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adding UI elements

After completing wireframes the following steps were to add in UI elements to other community feature screens. Shown below are the Events and the Counseling features.

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For women who wanted to make connections in groups we included events, where women can network, interact and meet other entrepreneur women.


We included a video introduction so that users were able to get to know the health professional beforehand


Research participants wanted to see reviews before booking a session, we included a swiping feature to look at the reviews

Learning outcomes

User Research 👩🏻‍💻

I learned to not always rely on the scripted questions while interviewing the women. Eventually, I was able to ask follow-up questions, such as “How” and “Why” questions and use the script as a guide. This made the interview run smooth, easy and natural.

Getting to Know the Community 👥

Before this project, I did not know many entrepreneurial women. I had the opportunity to speak to the women and learn what setting up a business entails. I was fortunate to get a glimpse of what an entrepreneurial journey was like.

Next Steps

At this point, resurgo is in development and the mobile application is expected to launch in 2023.  

Laurel Ann Stark

Founder of resurgo

"I received more than one unsolicited set of compliments on Esther's communication skills. In addition to the design process being pleasant, we have an absolutely stunning, well-thought-out, and functioning prototype as a direct result of Esther's skill, dedication, and expertise. I would not hesitate to recommend Esther to anyone seeking a UX designer."

Artwork done by Eli nakatsuka
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